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AMD EMEA component sales manager Neil Spicer spoke with CRN yesterday about the status of its financial affairs and future investments. In line with recent statements about its forthcoming Zen processors (reiterated here), Spicer says the future is looking bright for the graphics division as well, and the company in general.
"From a personal stance, I am confident [we can be profitable]," he says, later noting profitability is imperative next year (AMD has posted losses four quarters in a row now). "I believe we are working with exactly the right customers, and over the last few years we have become much simpler to execute and do business with."
Volkwagen is kind of rolling around in its own spew after a big night out drinking, where it thinks it's okay but needs to lay down and sleep for maybe a week straight. Well, the latest news feels exactly like that.
The troubled automaker is in the middle of the biggest car-related scandal in history, with its emission cheating news making headlines in recent months. Now the company is offering $1,000 in gift cards and other financial incentives to its customers, with $500 in dealership credit to top it off. The 482,000 diesel-powered VW cards also take home a $500 Visa gift card that can be used anywhere, and free roadside assistance for three years.
Audi customers receive help too, where a "goodwill package" is being prepared. Owners will have to visit a specific website to request the items, where you'll need to enter your vehicle's VIN number, and mileage as well as your name and address. Volkswagen is also offering $2,000 trade-in credit and with the announcement from today, owners of affected vehicles will benefit to the tune of around $3,000.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) reiterated its stance on 'Do Not Track' requests last week in response to a petition by advocacy group Consumer Watchdog. That is to say, it supports regulation of privacy practices for Internet service providers, but not for websites, apps, or anything else.
The petition requested 'edge providers' such as Google, Facebook, Netflix, and so on honor Do Not Track requests from browsers. When honored now (rarely, given it's optional and tends to hurt revenue), the sites and services in question do not collect potentially very valuable and arguably intrusive browsing data.
In response, the FCC dismissed the petition, noting the request is "inconsistent with the Commission's [...] scope of the privacy practices it states that it intends to address."
Following last week's acquisition of app maker Mobile Data Labs, Microsoft is about to snap up another company: Secure Islands.
Secure Islands is based in Israel and specializes in protection of business data, wherever it may be stored.
The acquisition is currently subject to regulatory approval. Once complete, Microsoft plans to integrate Secure Islands' technology into its Azure Rights Management Service, which performs the same functions, more or less. The software giant says the goal in doing so is to achieve "a flexible architecture able to meet the most rigorous protection and compliance requirements", and that in combination with its data classification present in Windows and Office 365, it will get there.
A new market research report by MarketsandMarkets predicts the augmented reality aka virtual reality market will be worth $56.8 billion USD by the year 2020.
Based on the trends, growth rates, and the technology itself it analyzed during its research study, the company believes this strong growth will be fueled by demand in aerospace and defense, consumer, automotive, and commercial sectors, as well as the backing of major companies, including Google and Microsoft.
Northern California citizen Tom Dickey has filed a lawsuit on behalf of himself and other AMD customers, alleging that AMD misrepresented the amount of cores present in its Bulldozer CPUs.
Bulldozer CPUs were marketed as having eight cores. And while this is true, Dickey posits the design is such that this was achieved by "stripping away components from two cores and combining what was left to make a single module." In doing so, the cores do not work independently, and therefore cannot perform eight instructions simultaneously and independently, as an eight-core CPU is expected to.
Dickey is suing for "statutory and punitive damages, litigation expenses, pre- and post-judgment interest, as well as other injunctive and declaratory relief."
Microsoft has been on an acquisition spree the past few years and isn't showing signs of stopping anytime soon. Today it scoops up Mobile Data Labs, creators of the Android and iOS app MileIQ, which helps you track your driving miles on the job for deduction or reimbursement purposes.
Corporate Vice President of Outlook and Office 365 Rajesh Jha says Microsoft is "thrilled to welcome Mobile Data Labs to the Microsoft family to work on new ways to improve the productivity to millions more mobile professionals."
Things are far from good for Volkswagen, with the company now admitting that its emissions scandal has breached out of only diesel vehicles being affected, to petrol-based cars, too.
The German company saw environmental tests failing on its diesel cars, after it was found that it had installed software that would make their cars run cleaner during government testing. Volkswagen said in a statement: "During the course of internal investigations irregularities were found when determining type approval CO2 levels".
The company added: "Based on present knowledge around 800,000 vehicles from the Volkswagen Group could be affected. An initial estimate puts the economic risks at approximately $3.04 billion (€2 billion)". This number could rise much higher, and I think it will, as the problems are continuing for the company in the wake of petrol-powered vehicles being thrown into the mix.
Apple only just reported its best quarter ever, with its main rival Samsung posting its Q3 2015 results. The company didn't do as well as Apple, but it did good enough in the quarter to return to an operating profit, after seven straight quarters of decline.
Samsung posted $6.42 billion in operating profit for Q3, up from the $3.6 billion from the same time last year. The company saw its net profit and sales jumping year-over-year, with its net profiting rising from $3.7 billion in Q3 2014 to $4.8 billion in Q3 2015. As for sales, Samsung saw them lift from $41.7 billion this time last year, to $45.6 billion over the last three months.
The company attributes the revenue increase to its semiconductor and display panel businesses while its operating profits increasing $440 million thanks to a weaker exchange rate between South Korea and other important currencies. Samsung reported a "significant" increase in sales of the Galaxy Note 5, Galaxy S6 edge+, Galaxy A and Galaxy J smartphones. The price reduction on its Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6+ smartphones decreased profits in year-on-year profits.
Just how good has Apple's last three months been? Extremely good. The company released their Q4 results from fiscal year 2015, and it has set yet another record: $51.5 billion in revenue. This is up 22% over the same period of 2014, where it was at $42.1 billion.
The company rode the success of the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, while the new iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus haven't been out long enough to impact profits. Next quarter should be a big one, of course. For the last three months, Apple sold a little over 48 million iPhones. This is up from the 39.2 million iPhones it sold in Q4 2014, an increase of 22%.
As for the separation of revenue per product, Apple is controlled by the iPhone. The iPhone made up 62.5% of its revenue, while Mac sales contributed 13.4%, iTunes/software/services pulled in 9.9%, the iPad delivered 8.3% and finally, 'other products' made 5.9%. So the iPhone, is extremely important to the company in terms of revenue, something we all knew, but it's great to see these numbers.