Here’s your daily tech digest, by way of the DGiT Daily newsletter, for Tuesday, July 23, 2019!
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1. Apple’s big bucks for Intel’s 5G tech
Apple is said to be in “advanced talks” to buy Intel’s 5G smartphone modem business, in a move seemingly designed to rid itself from occasional partner/courtroom enemy, Qualcomm.
- Sources close to the deal told the Wall Street Journal that Apple and CEO Tim Cook were offering Intel a sum of a billion dollars, for the intellectual property and staff behind its cellular modem business.
- It’s not like Intel is doing anything with it, after Apple ended up walking away following delays and troubles, which stalled the iPhone getting 5G modems until 2020 at the earliest.
- Intel’s 5G has been sitting about since Apple ditched them and went for a supply deal with Qualcomm back in April. At the time, courtroom legal battles were heating up before a truce was called.
- Apple has approximately $225 billion (with a ‘b’) cash in the bank, give or take a few billion, so picking up the Intel blueprints and patents and staff won’t exactly hurt the bottom line.
What’s next? Not exactly the stuff of Nostradamus
- It’s blindingly clear that Apple wants 5G technology and doesn’t want to pay Qualcomm a cent more than it has to.
- Also, Apple has the silicon chops, so to speak.
- It has a crack in-house chipmaking team which are leaders in the smartphone industry.
- Apple loves self-reliance, and the Qualcomm deal has always seemed a little temporary.
- Apple can eventually recoup what it pays for Intel’s business by dodging Qualcomm royalties.
- The big question: how soon will Apple be able to improve upon Intel’s half-baked modems, and release a home-cooked modem good enough for iPhones?
- Will it ditch Qualcomm, or still need to license patents?
- Or is the real battleground the next next-gen tech, 6G?
2. Honor 9X, Honor 9X Pro launched with Kirin 810 and pop-up cameras (Android Authority).
3. $700 million Equifax fine is still too little, too late (Wired).
4. The iPhone XR accounted for half of all iPhone sales in the U.S. (CIRP – PDF).
5. Microsoft invests $1 billion in Elon Musk’ OpenAI to help Azure do more with AI (TechCrunch).
6. Huawei helped North Korea build wireless network, suggest new reports (The Guardian).
7. Uber tests monthly subscription that combines Eats, rides, JUMP bikes and scooters (TechCrunch). This could be genius if some elements are unlimited.
8. Inside FTC’s 16-month Facebook probe that ended in a $5B fine; Considerations were made for direct liability for Zuckerberg and a bigger fine (Washington Post).
9. Boycotts, bruised egos: How players reacted to ‘Madden NFL 20’ ratings (ESPN).
10. Why online dating can feel like such an existential nightmare (The Atlantic). Mutual friends or family don’t set up people anymore, which makes everything down to the individual taking charge. And that’s hard, argues this piece.
11. The AI of GoldenEye 007 (Gamasutra, discussion on Hacker News).
12. Ford shows off electric F-150 truck by towing a million pounds of train (Ars Technica).
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