|I'm Rich Stroffolino, and these are the tech headlines for the week that was|
|Apple wasn't officially at CES this year, but definitely made their presence felt. Samsung announced it will offer iTunes Movies and TV shows and support Airplay 2 on its 2019 TV sets starting this spring. It will also come to 2018 Samsung TVs through a firmware update. The iTunes app will support Samsung's Universal Guide, search features and Bixby though Apple told The Verge that Samsung will not be able track usage inside the iTunes app. |
Vizio announced it will add support for Apple's AirPlay 2 and HomeKit to its Smartkit 3.0 TV platform, meaning they now offer Siri, Google Assistant and Alexa voice support.
Sony announced Airplay and HomeKit for its new 8K LCD TV and a 4K OLED TV as part of its Master Series. The Z9g 8K comes in 85 and 98-inch models with support for upscaling of 4K content while the A9G runs 55, 65 and 77 inches. Both models offer support Dolby Vision/Atmos, and run Android TV. No pricing or ship dates were released.
|And if that wasn't enough CES upstaging, Apple CEO Tim Cook appeared on CNBC's Mad Money program to let people know Apple will launch new services this year. The most obvious service for Apple to launch would be a TV service given the billions they've spent on unreleased original programming and having tons of TVs about to support iTunes and AirPlay. He also said he thought people in the future would call health Apple's greatest contribution to humankind implying some kind of health-related service. And he reiterated that the iPhone XR has been the most popular iPhone everyday since launch and the Apple Watch and Airpods bring in more money than the iPod ever did.||https://www.engadget.com/2019/01/09/apple-health-services-2019|
|Google made a number of product and feature enhancements to Assistant. Google promises...again... that Google Assistant is coming to Sonos speakers with the Sonos One and Sonos Beam first in line. It's also coming to the Instant Pot, Dish's Hopper set-top boxes, a Lenovo Smart Clock, and in-car bluetooth devices from JBL and Anker. Google Assistant got some new features too including the ability to check you into flights, book hotels and translate 27 different languages. Finally Assistant Connect is a new lightweight platform developers can use to connect a device to a Google Home without having to build Internet connectivity into the device. Like, for instance, an e-ink screen that can show you your calendar or the weather just by talking to the Google Home.||https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/08/heres-everything-google-announced-at-ces-2019/|
|In chip news, Nvidia unveiled the GeForce RTX 2060, with 240 tensor cores with 52 teraflops of deep learning performance, 6GB of GDDR6 RAM and 5 giga-rays of real-time ray tracing performance. Nvidia claims its 60% faster than the outgoing 1060 GPU. Pricing starts at $349, available January 15th through system builders. Nvidia also announced that Turing architecture RTX GPUs would be available for laptops, including up to the RTX 2080.|
AMD unveiled the 2nd generation of Ryzen laptop chips, build on a 12nm Zen+ architecture. The top end Ryzen 7 3750H offers 4 cores and 8 threads, running at a base 2.3Ghz, with turbo frequencies up to 4Ghz, 10 GPU cores, all running at 35W. Lower power 15W U-series processes will be available as well. The company also launched new A-series processors designed specifically for Chromebooks, with Acer and HP both announcing laptops with the new chips.
AMD also announced the Radeon VII, appropriately named because its the first 7nm GPU marketed to consumers. AMD says it should be about 25% faster than the last model at the same power consumption. The Radeon VII has 60 compute units at speeds up to 1.8 GHz with 16GB of high bandwidth memory. It arrives February 7 for $699.
Intel demonstrated its first Ice Lake 10nm chips based on the Sunny Cove architecture, with Thunderbolt 3, Wi-Fi 6, and DL Boost (deep learning boost). Intel says PC makers will have devices with Ice Lake processors on the shelves by the end of 2019, showing what appeared to be a Dell XPS 2-in-1 demo unit. Intel also announced six new desktop 9th gen chips from the Core i3 up to the Core i9 shipping later this month and said it would bring 9th gen processors to laptops in the H-series sometime in Q2.
|Augmented reality startup Nreal debuted their Light AR sunglasses at CES. Light glasses weight 85-grams, come in bright colored plastic frames, offer a 52-degree field of view and 1080p resolution, and are powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. Light glasses will start shipping in Q2, with mass production beginning in Q3. No price was announced, but is expected to be around $1000. The startup was founded in 2017 by former Magic Leap engineer Xu (shu) Chi, with the goal of creating a consumer focused AR headset.||https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/08/chinas-nreal-raises-15m-to-shrink-augmented-headsets-to-size-of-sunglasses/|
|IBM unveiled the IBM Q System One, a 20-qubit quantum computer. It has improved stability meaning resets that used to take days now take hours. IBM didn't announce sales of the device but it will be availble for use through the cloudl. Companies and research institutes interested in exploring experimental programing on IBM's quantum computers can join the IBM Q Network research community being launched in partnership with Fermilab, ExxonMobile and CERN.||https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/08/ibm-unveils-its-first-commercial-quantum-computer/|
|Samsung announced an event February 20 at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco with a simulaneous keynote in London, and the Wall Street Journal reports the company plans to announce three new Galaxy S10 models: a lower-end Galaxy S10 Lite with a 5.8-inch display, Galaxy S10 with a 6.1-inch display, and Galaxy S10+ with a 6.4-inch display, all for a March release.... and a new foldable smartphone dubbed the "Galaxy Fold".||https://www.macrumors.com/2019/01/10/samsung-galaxy-s10-event-february-20/|
|Xiaomi saw a three-day stock decline down 17 percent, or $6.2 billion in market value. Billions of Xiaomi shares are now unlocked after a six-month lockup period following the company's IPO. Analysts have pointed to China’s slowing smartphone market and increased competition from rival companies like Huawei for the selloff.||https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-01-10/xiaomi-woes-deepen-as-three-day-rout-wipes-6-billion-off-stock|
|Samsung announced an estimated 29 percent drop in quarterly profit for the last quarter of 2018, and it issued commentary along with the guidance for the first time since mobile phone sales dropped in 2014. Samsung blamed unexpected weak demand from data center customers for chips and a “stagnant and fiercely competitive smartphone market” for the change.||https://www.reuters.com/article/us-samsung-elec-results/samsung-electronics-says-fourth-quarter-profit-likely-fell-29-percent-china-demand-weak-idUSKCN1P12C7?feedType=RSS&feedName=technologyNews|
|Not to be left out, LG announced its Q4 profit likely fell 80% year over year and revenue likely fell 7 percent. Thinning profit margins and declining smartphone business are among the likely causes.||https://www.reuters.com/article/us-lg-elec-results/lg-electronics-sees-80-percent-drop-in-fourth-quarter-profit-analysts-point-to-thinning-tv-margins-idUSKCN1P20H5?feedType=RSS&feedName=technologyNews|
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|END OF SHOW|