Intel's Steve Long acknowledges the economic uncertainty caused by the coronavirus pandemic, while at the same time observing that the number of PCs per household is rising, along with the ranks of first-time PC buyers. "For the client business, I think equally it's underscored the resiliency of our category," he says.
Applied Materials, KLA-Tencor, Lam Research and other US vendors of semiconductor equipment hold a market share of nearly 50%, presenting a challenge to China's effort to become more self-sufficient in producing microchips, VLSI Research notes. "The reason why domestic firms can't produce high-end chips is not due to technological obstacles but lack of customers," says Xiang Ligang, director-general of the Information Consumption Alliance.
Researchers at the Beijing Institute of Carbon-based Integrated Circuits report making improvements in carbon-based semiconductor materials. "Carbon-based semiconductors have the advantages of lower costs, lower power consumption and higher efficiency," says Peking University Professor Peng Lianmao, the carbon-based microchip project leader.
Arm brought out the Cortex-X1 CPU, Cortex-A78 CPU, Mali-G78 graphics processing unit and Ethos-N78 neural network processor core for use in smartphone chip designs. Meanwhile, Arm is expanding its collaboration with Cadence Design Systems on developing mobile devices with the Arm Cortex -A78 and Cortex-X1 CPUs.
Qualcomm predicts all-in-one 5G-based mixed-reality viewers will emerge within the next four years. Stand-alone XR glasses will become available in the next decade, the chip design company says.
While more companies are now offering chiplets, the market is constrained by a lack of industry standards and ecosystem issues, among other factors, Mark LaPedus writes. "If you are going to stitch together several pieces of silicon, you need to have a lot of detailed information about each of those chips, their architectures and the physical and logical interfaces on those chips," says Eelco Bergman of ASE.
The UK's National Security Centre said it was again looking at whether using networking equipment from Huawei Technologies would compromise national security, given the US position on the embattled Chinese company. "More suppliers means greater competition, innovation and network reliability, and crucially ensures consumers have access to the best possible technology," said Victor Zhang, Huawei's top UK executive, noting that delaying the 5G rollout due to concerns about security would cost the British economy about $8.6 billion.
Huawei Technologies has reportedly asked that Samsung Electronics and SK Hynix keep supplying the Chinese company with memory chips in light of the new export controls instituted by the US government, according to the Korea Economic Daily. Huawei reportedly spends about $8 billion a year for memories from the Korean chipmakers.
An international research team reports the development of a biodegradable motion sensor that could be implanted in the human body. The sensor uses triboelectric nanogenerators instead of a battery as a power source.
Samsung Electronics brought out the Exynos 880 mobile processor, aimed at use in mid-range smartphones. The chip is designed to provide such phones with 5G cellular communications capabilities, along with improved gaming performance.
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