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The time has come: TSMC has announced that its "16nm [chips] smoothly entered volume production as expected". The Taiwanese chipmaker told investors that it had started 16nm volume production after a report said that Apple was reducing the amount of orders it was sending TSMC's way.
Instead of Apple going to TSMC, the iPhone giant would instead send the orders to its largest rival; Samsung, as well as GlobalFoundries. The first production runs of the 16nm node will be for Apple's SoCs according to the latest rumors, while other companies are waiting in line. This includes NVIDIA, LG, Freescale Semiconductor, Avago, LG, and MediaTek. AMD is reportedly not on the list, but this could be wrong, with the company reportedly preparing its Zen CPU architecture, as well as its Arctic Islands GPU architecture that will be made on the 16nm process.
TSMC has also teased that it will soon begin ramping up "an enhanced version of 16nm chips, or 16 FinFET+ chips, in the third quarter and that production would reach a high volume in the same quarter". This is what NVIDIA is waiting for, especially for its gigantic and surely super-powered next-gen Pascal-based GP100 GPU. NVIDIA's GP100 chip is absolutely mammoth, with a rumored 17 billion transistors and up to 32GB of HBM2.
It's not a secret that HTC is struggling right now, but the Taiwanese smartphone manufacturer has just announced that it will be culling 15% of its workforce after continued struggles with sales.
The company just released its Q2 results, with a forecast for Q3 that is even worse than the previous three months. Cher Wang, CEO of HTC, said: "Now, as we diversify beyond smartphones, we need a flexible and dynamic organization to ensure we can take advantage of all of the exciting opportunities in the connected lifestyle space".
Personally, I think HTC has a future in VR headsets if it can successfully launch and sell considerable units of its upcoming Vive headset, something it collaborated with Valve on. But, it's a risk, as anything is, and HTC isn't in the position for more continued losses.
StumbleUpon has failed to secure itself additional funding, which will see the company laying off 70% of its workforce, cutting numbers from 100 to around 30 employees.
Employees were reportedly made aware of the changes last week, with those that are looking at the door to be finishing up this week. The ones that are sticking around, are mostly sales and engineering, according to VentureBeat. Their source has said that it's hard for StumbleUpon to compete against the onslaught of social networks.
A new report from PageFair says that there has been a 41% spike in the use of ad blockers over the last 12 months, something that will cost the industry around $21.8 billion in lost advertising revenue in 2015 alone.
The report warns that ad-blocking software is a large threat to the future of free content on the web, with PageFair's 'The cost of ad blocking' study saying that close to 200 million monthly Internet users are now using ad-blocking browser extensions. The report continued, saying that sites targeting "young, technically savvy, or more male audiences" are the ones that are most effected when it comes to ad blockers.
In the United States, around 45 million monthly active users use ad-blocking software, but that pales in comparison to Europe's 77 million users. Greece tops them all with 36.7% of the Internet population using ad-blocking software of some sort. Co-founder and Chief Executive of PageFair, Sean Blanchfield said: "It is tragic that ad block users are inadvertently inflicting multi-billion dollar losses on the very websites they most enjoy. With ad blocking going mobile, there's an eminent threat that the business model that has supported the open web for two decades is going to collapse".
Google has filed paperwork with the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) in its plan to rebrand the public holding company as Alphabet Inc. The decision was made as Google looks to create a new operating structure, but that doesn't mean Google's businesses will suddenly disappear.
Services such as its search, maps, apps, YouTube, ads and Android will be listed as "Google business" under Alphabet. However, the company has branched out into a number of other business ventures, which will be better organized under Alphabet.
Expect the changes to be rolled out over the next few months, as current Google investors should be able to receive a detailed outlook how each business is operating.
It looks as though things have gone from bad to worse with Taiwanese smartphone maker HTC, with investors effectively saying HTC's "brand, factories and buildings were worthless", reports Bloomberg.
HTC's market price fell to $1.5 billion on Monday, below the $1.5 billion it had in cash at the end of June. Calvin Huang at Sinopac Financial Holdings Co. in Taipei told Bloomberg: "HTC's cash is the only asset of value to shareholders. Most of the other assets shouldn't be considered in their valuation because there's more write-offs to come and the brand has no value".
Q3 2015 isn't shaping up to be too good for HTC either, with the Taiwanese company forecasting 48% below analysts' estimations, after a 35% cut to projected revenues in the preceding period. There's one massive looming question I have: what about Vive? HTC's VR headset that it collaborated on with Valve, which could be the most exciting product HTC has ever made.
Tesla Motors might have one of the most exciting cars on the market with its Model S electric car, but the company lost a huge $359 million on the Model S last quarter alone.
$359 million over a three-month period is a hefty $4000 per car sold, with the company aiming to cut its production targets for the rest of this year, and into 2016. Elon Musk has even been tempted of raising more capital and also didn't rule out selling more stock. Tesla shares fell 9% on Thursday, and another 2% on Friday as investors begin to "weighed the risks of Musk's ambitious plans for expanding Tesla's auto and energy-storage businesses", reports Business Insider.
We all know HTC has been struggling for the last couple of years, but the company is on the precipice of releasing one of the most exciting products it has ever launched: Vive. But, that doesn't mean it's going to be a massive seller for the company, with plans on some extreme cuts to HTC's core business.
The Taiwanese giant has said that the next step to try and secure the future is to have layoffs, cost cutbacks, and a reduction of how many smartphone models it offers to consumers. Chief Financial Officer Chialin Chang talked with Reuters recently, saying that "the cuts will be across the board" and that "they will be significant". No exact number has been discussed, but we should expect to see it before Q2 2016.
NVIDIA has just posted its Q2 2015 financial results, beating analysts' expectations by a considerable amount. Analysts pegged NVIDIA to have revenues decline by 8%, but NVIDIA had an increase of 4.5% in revenues instead.
The increased revenues were thanks to strong GeForce sales, surely led by the super-impressive GeForce GTX 900 series of video cards. The company is expecting sales to drop in Q3, while NVIDIA's gaming revenue increased 59% thanks to big GeForce numbers. Wedbush Securities analyst Betsy Van Hees said: "The near term story continues to be PC gaming. That is the key driver for them and they continue to dominate in that area".
Another area where NVIDIA is working hard is in the automotive sector, where the company has said that there are 8 million cars on the road using their technology and that they're working with over 50 companies for its DRIVE chip, allowing self-driving cars.
All of this happened before Apple Music even launched, and revealed how powerful the 25-year-old is in the music industry. Swift recently praised Apple while criticizing Spotify:
"Apple treated me like I was a voice of a creative community that they actually cared about," Swift said in the September issue of Vanity Fair. "And I found it really ironic that the multi-billion-dollar company reacted to criticism with humility, and the start-up with no cash flow reacted to criticism like a corporate machine."