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Qualcomm has a plan to acquire ARM, and it might just work

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Qualcomm logo HQ Source: Qualcomm

After the failed NVIDIA acquisition, Softbank, the owner of ARM, is still looking to offload a portion of the business to interested parties. Qualcomm appears to be one of those interested parties, and it also has a plan to convince regulators that it would be fair to all of ARM’s partners and other members of the industry.

After the collapse of the $66 billion NVIDIA deal, Softbank decided to go ahead with listing ARM on the New York Stock Exchange, but it raised a lot of concern for industry bodies regarding the company’s future. ARM’s architecture is used in nearly everything today, and it plays an essential role. Its value lies in its patents and designs, valuable to other competing semiconductor manufacturers such as Qualcomm, Samsung, Apple, and NVIDIA.

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Cristiano Amon, Qualcomm’s Chief Executive, told the Financial Times that “[Qualcomm is] an interested party in investing. It’s a very important asset and it’s an asset which is going to be essential to the development of our industry.”

Qualcomm wants to buy a stake in ARM, alongside other competing businesses and create a consortium to keep the business neutral and fair. Qualcomm essentially wants its competitors to line up and invest in ARM, and join the consortium, which could help convince regulators for the deal to go through, eliminating any current concerns about control.

“You’d need to have many companies participating so they have a net effect that Arm is independent.”

Intel, Samsung, TSMC, Broadcom, Qualcomm, Micron and NVIDIA are among the top ten biggest semiconductor companies globally. Suppose these companies could team up and buy a slice of the ARM pie. In that case, it could introduce significant changes in the near future, and it could also convince UK regulators that the future of ARM would be in safe hands, as it would benefit all of the big players in the industry. This also means they’d have to prove that they’d support smaller semiconductor businesses, and still offer similar licensing agreements.

chip shortage Source: CNN

ARM has been considered an impartial actor in the $500 billion global semiconductor industry, and it has licensing deals and partners with most companies around the world. This led to the company becoming one of the most influential businesses in the world, as most chips use ARM architecture and designs.

“Arm has won everywhere because of the collective investment of the entire ecosystem, from companies like Apple and Qualcomm and many others, and that’s because it was an independent, open architecture that everybody could invest in,”

ARM’s business will only grow larger in the near future as the demand for chips will continue to increase. Electric vehicles already use a lot of chips, and more cars and technologies will be digitalized in the future, expanding the reach and ARM’s business significantly. More companies are also moving toward using ARM’s architecture for their processors, simplifying specific processes and accelerating the development. Apple’s latest M1 silicon also relies on the ARM architecture, and it proved to be immensely successful.

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Qualcomm plans to acquire ARM Source: Pocketnow

Qualcomm partnering with other semiconductor giants is a little surprising, given that the company has a massive portfolio of patents and designs. Still, it’s not surprising to see the company eye ARM’s business as it could further expand its reach and influence into other markets.

Suppose Qualcomm can get a few other investors. In that case, the deal has a real chance of passing through regulators, offering the company and its partners better licensing agreements, and reducing the cost of developing new technologies.

Nothing is set in stone at the time of writing this, and we’re yet to see a potential deal materialize in the future. Qualcomm reportedly had not spoken to Softbank about a potential investment, but the news confirms that Qualcomm has intentions to get the movement to a new stage. What’s certain is that Qualcomm is open to discussions with ARM and other competitive chip makers, and that it wants to create a consortium of members to stay neutral. Investing in ARM would benefit all semiconductor manufacturers in the world as it would allow the company to spend more on research and development to make new licensable architectures and designs.

What are your thoughts about Qualcomm’s intentions? Do you think that a consortium would ease the regulators’ concerns? Let us know in the comments!

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First Galaxy Z Flip 4 Color Sells Out

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The entire suite of new Galaxy products has been up for pre-order since Wednesday and we keep checking to see if any of it is selling out. So far, not much has outside of a single online exclusive color of the Galaxy Z Flip 4, while the Fold 4 and both Galaxy Watch 5 watches can still be had with August 26 launch day delivery.

The first color of the Galaxy Z Flip 4 to sellout is the “Navy” colorway. The pre-configured version with navy is listed now as “out of stock,” plus if you try and use the Bespoke tool to capture a Flip 4 entirely in navy, it’ll show there as soldout too. Interestingly, if you Bespoke tool a Flip 4 and only put navy as a single panel, you’ll get a 3-4 weeks estimate.

The only other item with even a slight delay is the goofy burgundy Fold 4, but it appears to be sticking to the advertised 3-4 week delivery. I wouldn’t actually consider it much of a delay.

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Whatever the situation is here, I’ve got to admit that I’m surprised that more of the new Samsung devices aren’t soldout or with extended shipping times. As of right now, all four of the main Flip 4 colors will arrive on time (see here), as will the three main Fold 4 colors (see here) and the Galaxy Watch 5 and Watch 5 Pro in all configurations (see here).

Compare this launch to the Galaxy S22 from earlier in 2022 and they couldn’t have hit differently. Samsung’s dates for the exclusive online colors of the S22 Ultra started slipping almost immediately, which we know first hand because of Tim’s struggles to land one. Within a week, the dates further moved with estimates a full month out or even later.

We’ll keep an eye on shipping times over the next week or so to see how this launch changes. Will the situation start to match the Galaxy S22 launch or are the minor improvements in this year’s foldable line-up not enough to get people to bite? In my first couple of days with the Flip 4, I can tell you that the phone is very much like the Flip 3, but that doesn’t mean I’m not enjoying the hell out of it.



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Telegram’s Big Update is for the Emoji Lovers

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A new update is rolling out to Telegram today and it is all about emoji. If you love emoji, custom emoji, animated emoji, or any other type of emoji, you are in for a special treat.

Telegram announced its new Emoji Platform “where anyone can upload custom packs with unique art styles and characters for Telegram Premium users.” Folks can use these uploaded custom emoji packs in messages or captions, plus premium users are getting access to another 10 emoji packs.

To make it more obvious that all of these new custom and animated emoji are available, you’ll see the sticker shortcut in the message box turn into an emoji shortcut as you type. That shortcut leads to a new emoji panel, where you’ll see suggestions and be able to browse your various packs. To make things (potentially) easier, typing shortcuts like :smile or :lol will give you all of the available options too.

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And finally, custom emoji can be interactive in 1-on-1 chats, so “any user can tap to play synchronized, full-screen effects” from all of the emoji you spam off to friends.

For iOS users, there are new sticker, GIF, and emoji panels “with separate tabs for stickers, GIFs and emoji – just like on the Android, desktop and web apps.”

In other Telegram Premium feature news, users will find a setting that allows them to control who is able to send them voice and video messages. The options now are Everyone, My Contacts, or Nobody.

There are additional controls that will let you choose specific people or groups, and of course, you can always convert audio messages in to text. The settings for all of this are in Settings > Privacy and Security > Voice Messages.

The last new feature for Premium users is an option to “share the experience with friends, family and coworkers by sending them a prepaid subscription for 3, 6 or 12 months – at a discount.” To do so, you can tap on the profile image of someone in a chat, then the 3-dot menu to “Gift Premium.”

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These updates appear to be rolling out right away, as I’ve already seen the update on Android.

// Telegram



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First Early Galaxy Watch 5 Pro Review Arrived

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Of the two new Galaxy Watch 5 models announced, the Galaxy Watch 5 Pro is the one we’re most interested in. Not only is Samsung marketing it as an “outdoors” watch for the active type, they also gave it “Pro” name, as if it packs a number of extra features over the regular model. We don’t have one in for review (we did order one) yet, so we’re doing that thing we often do with Samsung launches – looking elsewhere for early impressions.

Thanks to Ray from DC Rainmaker, one of the best at reviewing sports watches, we have a first early Galaxy Watch 5 Pro review to analyze. He took the watch for a run to test GPS and heartrate accuracy, as well as battery life. The video he posted also compares some features of the Watch 5 Pro to the Watch 5, in case we didn’t do a good enough job of that earlier in the week.

The takeaways from this early and not-at-all-final review, show that the new Compass feature might have some initial issues, GPS accuracy is not bad and performs far better than the Apple Watch Series 7, heartrate accuracy was quite good after a slowish start, and that GPS battery life is probably closer to half of what Samsung is advertising. Daily battery without GPS is likely closer to 2.5 days vs. the 3.5 days advertised. Again, these are all early, first look numbers that could change over the coming weeks with more testing.

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The video also dives into “Pro” features here and laughs a bit at what that even means because there aren’t really any pro features when you compare to other outdoor-focused sports watches. And I would tend to agree with that. In fact, Tim and I were joking earlier in the week about Samsung’s forced “outdoors” push for this watch, when almost nothing about the watch makes it better for outdoors than other Samsung watches except for GPX support and backtracking when navigating. These are not “pro” features and the rest of the watch is just the same as the Watch 5. It’s just silly branding.

Anyways, we’ll have our Watch 5 Pro soon enough and will do out own testing. If you were trying to decide now to get in on this awesome pre-order promo ($50 credit, free Charger Duo, and $240 off trade-in) , give the video below a watch.



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