Items tagged with SoC

Samsung is warning today that its coming financial results will be disappointing as prices for chips and LCDs have fallen as smartphone sales continue to slow. Samsung and Apple have both experienced sales slowdowns as they continue to push prices of smartphones higher in the face of lengthening upgrade cycles. Samsung has stated that there is a "widening price fall among major products" and a "weakening overall demand." Samsung rarely admits that its figures will miss goals; the early admission that earnings will fall sort have some fearing that the shortfall will be significant. The smartphone industry saw a 7% sales decline overall during Q4 2018, which marked the fifth consecutive decline... Read more...
Samsung has been fighting with former employees and their families for over a decade after some of those workers became ill or died due to unsafe working conditions inside its chip and display manufacturing facilities. These types of facilities are used by Samsung to make displays and semiconductors, like the Exynos 9810, that debuted earlier this year. Some of the workers that were employed at these factories contracted severe diseases such as leukemia and brain tumors. After many years of fights between these former employees and their families, Samsung has issued an official apology. The apology comes after Samsung and family members agreed to accept compensation terms that were suggested... Read more...
AMD's desktop class Ryzen 2000 series and upcoming Ryzen Threadripper WX series processors aren't the only Zen-flavored chips on the company's docket. The company announced today that it has a new semi-custom SoC that's available to customers that will allow them to design powerful gaming systems targeted for their respective markets. More specifically, these SoCs will initially go into gaming PCs and dedicated gaming consoles that will be released by Chinese firm Zhongshan Subor. The specs are relatively beefy, as it combines the brawn of Ryzen with the graphics prowess of Vega. Getting down to the specifications, the SoC features a 4-core/8-thread Ryzen (first-generation... Read more...
With some smartphone vendors deciding for the rest of us that we don't need a headphone jack, the time for fast progression on the wireless audio front is needed now. Wireless audio isn't anything new, of course, but it's a technology that's extremely hard to get right. A good wireless solution needs to have decent battery-life, a stable connection, and of course, good audio quality. Again, wireless audio isn't anything new, but when Apple released its wireless AirPods earbuds (and removed the headphone jack from its iPhone at the same time), it seemed to spur every other vendor to begin taking wireless earbuds seriously. Apple has done well, based on the number of AirPods you'll see in use in... Read more...
A handful of Apple engineers fell from Cupertino's tree and into Google's hands earlier this year, and apparently 2017 wasn't about to end without another notable move taking place. Talented engineers commonly move around the industry, so many employer changes are uneventful, but when the person involved in a move is a top chip designer at a major player like Apple, things become a little more interesting. The man in Google's crosshair this go-around is experienced chip designer John Bruno, whose tenure at Apple lasted five-and-a-half years. Before that, Bruno spent over eight years at AMD, working on northbridges and their IGPs in his earlier days, and then moving on to deliver the Comal platform... Read more...
With Intel finding itself inside most of the world's consumer PCs and enterprise servers, it's begun making a massive push on making sure its chips wind up in all other devices - those that most of us regular folk don't think about. We're talking "edge devices" and "fog computing" hardware. "Edge devices" are those that connect all of our devices, so they can include routers, switches, and so forth. "Fog computing", by contrast, acts as decentralized resource management. An example of fog computing can be seen in Windows 10, which has the ability to serve updates to other PCs in a household or business. It's "fog" because it hovers around the given area, rather than "cloud", which would require... Read more...
Sometimes, it's best to accept the fact that you can't do everything yourself, and where microprocessors are concerned, that can be critical. Sometimes there's just no sense in reinventing the wheel. However, Samsung has been driving to build in-house graphics IP for its Exynos mobile chipsets for quite some time. According to new rumors, though, the Korean company has put that idea on hold, and is instead considering licensing GPU IP from other major players like AMD and / or NVIDIA. According to industry sources at SamMobile, Samsung is in talks with both AMD and NVIDIA to license their respective technologies, although it's unclear at this point if deals... Read more...
It's been rumored for some time that NVIDIA had lost interest in the mobile phone business, and that's something company co-founder and CEO Jen-Hsun Huang confirmed during his company's presentation at Computex. None of this is much of a surprise, as the company's Tegra SoC hasn't found itself inside of a commercially successful smartphone, but this confirmation is a bit sobering nonetheless. NVIDIA has what it takes to create an incredible smartphone SoC, and has proven that it can even build great devices surrounding those SoCs. But at the end of the day, the ROI for that particular venture is apparently not worth it. NVIDIA's Jen-Hsun Huang showing off SHIELD Android TV When questioned... Read more...
A couple of weeks ago, we had to report on the unfortunate news that Intel would be laying off 11% of its workforce, which equates to roughly 12,000 workers. With this move, Intel assured investors that it would be refocusing its efforts going forward, in effect chopping off what doesn't have a significant return and looking to products that do. This refocusing has led Intel to drop a bomb on their Atom product line. In effect, chips destined for smartphones and tablets are no longer on the roadmap. Instead, resources that were dedicated to the currently-available Sofia chip and upcoming Broxton have been reallocated to "products that deliver higher returns and advance our strategy."... Read more...
AMD reported its first quarter financial results for 2016 earlier today, which continued to show losses and increased expenses in multiple areas. The company showed a net loss of $109 million, a loss per share of $0.14, and a non-GAAP net loss of $96 million, or $0.12 per share. Revenue was $832 million, which was down 13 percent sequentially, and down 19 percent year-over-year. According to the company, the losses and increased expenses were primarily due to lower sales of semi-custom SoCs and client notebook processors, and increased R&D expenses related to new and upcoming products.But slipped into the release was a very interesting blurb about a new licensing deal AMD has struck in a... Read more...
A couple of months ago, chip monolith Qualcomm unveiled that it was developing a platform to help us take our drones to the next level. Aptly-named Snapdragon Flight, this is an all-in-one platform that lets drone creators produce some of the most advanced models we've ever seen, and we're not simply talking about being able to take great video here. At its core, Snapdragon Flight is designed to offer beefy computation on board because drones that use it are meant to be as full-featured as possible. Qualcomm touts the support of 4K video capture with an optical flow camera as well as stereo cameras. What's going to be teased at CES is going to be even more impressive, though: autonomous drone... Read more...
We reported earlier this week on a rumor which claims that Intel's next top-end enthusiast processor will pack an impressive 10 cores, along with a healthy 25MB of L3 cache. Unlike most enthusiast launches we've seen from Intel over the past few years, Broadwell-E will be special in that there will be four models to choose from; the "smallest" being a six-core chip clocked at 3.4GHz. Today, we get to peer into other plans Intel has for the coming year, including what we'll be seeing on the mainstream side. Earlier this summer, Intel released its long-overdue Broadwell desktop processors, which were the 14nm die shrink of Haswell. In September, the company followed-up with Skylake, also a 14nm... Read more...
If you purchased a higher-end smartphone in the past two years, chances are good that it has an SoC under its hood that packs ARM's ARMv8 architecture. It's what made 64-bit mobile processors possible, and with that comes increased performance as well as the ability to utilize lots of memory, among other processing efficiencies. Today, it's not hard to find ARMv8 in even modest smartphones, some of which could cost under $100. But in emerging markets, the architecture has been nonexistent. This is a problem ARM is planning to solve. It plans to do that with its brand new Cortex-A35, a microarchitecture that aims for ultra high efficiency and will target the "next billion smartphone users... Read more...
As demand in certain markets begins to slow, some companies have shifted much of their focus over to the automotive sector. However, expecting immediate success there would be unwise. The automotive market is notoriously tough egg to crack, as long-standing agreements are hard to break, and the decision to bring someone new in isn't taken lightly - we're dealing with machines that could cost someone their life if something went wrong, after all. While some companies have been on top of things, such as NVIDIA, and even Apple (despite nothing having been announced yet), other companies are learning about the benefits of succeeding in this lucrative market a bit late. A good example is Samsung,... Read more...
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