Fujitsu Purchase 85% Shares in AMD Operations

AMD have just announced that they are now on a joint venture with electronics giant, Fujitsu. The two companies will be pairing together to provide factories in Penang (Malaysia) and Suzhou (China). Fujitsu will be getting a whopping 85 percent of the joint venture, which is suspected to heavily reduce AMD’s capital expenditure. Approximately 1700 workers at the two factories will become employees of the new venture the companies stated. For AMD, this is all for $371 Million in cash and retain a 15% stake in the new entity.

AMD announced on their investor relations page:

AMD (NASDAQ: AMD) and Nantong Fujitsu Microelectronics Co., Ltd (NFME) (SZSE: TFWD) today announced the signing of a definitive agreement to create a joint venture combining AMD’s high-volume assembly, test, mark, and pack (ATMP) facilities and experienced workforce in Penang, Malaysia and Suzhou, China with NFME’s established outsourced semiconductor assembly and test (OSAT) expertise. Upon close, the new business will leverage the capabilities of 5 facilities and approximately 5,800 employees to offer differentiated ATMP capabilities and scale to service a broad range of customers. The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2016, pending successful completion of regulatory approvals.

The transaction is expected to be closed in the first half of 2016, pending completion of regulatory approvals. The joint venture positioned to take advantage of the increasing demand for semiconductor assembly and test services (SATS).

AMD also state:

According to Gartner Research, the SATS market revenue is expected to be $27.4 billion for 2015, with growth of 1.1 percent. The 2014 through 2019 CAGR for the market is forecast to be 4.6 percent, leading to approximately $34 billion in total estimated market revenue by 2019

  • AMD will contribute to the joint venture:

    • ATMP facilities in Penang, Malaysia and Suzhou, China
    • Approximately 1,700 employees — including the site leadership teams which will continue to provide management and oversight
  • NFME will purchase an 85 percent share of AMD’s Penang and Suzhou operations, and serve as controlling partner for the new combined business.

  • As consideration for the transaction, at close AMD expects to receive approximately $371 million from NFME, record cash of $320 million, net of expenses, and retain 15 percent ownership of its Penang and Suzhou operations.

  • Post close, AMD expects the transaction to be cost neutral with significantly reduced AMD capital expenditures.

  • There are no planned workforce reductions at AMD’s Penang or Suzhou facilities in conjunction with the creation of the joint venture.

I think AMD are back on the radar now, they seemed to be struggling in the market recently and share value was dropping rapidly. This move by Fujitsu has helped AMD get back into the market and will hopefully providing us with some awesome new chips and tech. The company reported that they were down 5% on their gross margin this year, due to an inventory write down of $65 million. Their woes were concentrated on its PC business, with suffered a $181 million loss on $424 million revenue.

AMD have been serving us for 45 years now, they’ve driven some serious innovation in their processors, graphics and visualization technologies, big building blocks for gaming, immersive platforms and data centers.

 

What If You Tried to Print the Entire Internet?

The internet, a whopping network of networks, spanning the entire globe and even some of outerspace. More than 3 billion users are online and by 2016 internet traffic could be at a massive rate of one zettabyte per year. Stuff.co.nz did some amazing mathematics to work out, just how many pages we would need to print the internet; it’s a lot!

How many web pages are there?

In 2007, as part of his master’s thesis at Tilburg University, the Dutch Web consultant Maurice de Kunder developed a statistical method for tracking the number of pages indexed by major search engines. The math and technology behind this tool are pretty complicated – his thesis ran 68 pages, in Dutch – but eight years later, it’s still constantly updating the number of pages in Google and Bing search.

A couple caveats here: Even this figure is an estimate, and it doesn’t capture anything outside the reach of search engines. But for our purposes, de Kunder said, we can assume there are roughly 47 billion pages on the indexed, searchable web.

How many printed pages is the average web page?

Meanwhile, to find how many printed pages each of those 47 billion would be, I needed to visit a representative sample of websites and try to print out each. To arrive at a fair average – one with a 5 per cent margin of error, and a 95 per cent certainty – I’d have to test 385 random sites, as chosen by the so-called Random Website Machine.

This is a fun game you can play at home (!), if you have absolutely nothing else to do: click the “random website” button; hit CTRL+A and CTRL+P; and record the resulting “pages” number in a separate spreadsheet.

There was the site for a Taiwanese Little League (two pages); online stores selling Orthodox icons and horses’ hoof grease (1); the homepage for the Czech national lacrosse league (4). I learned that West Virginia only has one business newspaper, and that Bulgaria’s constitution was adopted in 1991. Also that, in 2000, the BBC called Britney Spears a “teenage pop phenomenon.”

A few of these sites would, of course, take up many printed pages: say, Wikipedia articles or the homepages of chatty personal blogs. But the vast, mundane majority of the websites I visited – the pages of Polish municipal governments, say, or a recipe for “cattle drive chili” – only took up one or two. (We forget that our modern Internet sits atop strata of Geocities pages and long-forgotten forums and sites for dentists offices in, who knows, Kalamazoo.)

The average site came out to 6.5 printed pages – slightly longer than the Wikipedia page on Lithuania’s performance at the ’92 Olympics. In other words, there’s a 95 percent chance that the average length of all web pages in the world is somewhere between 6.2 and 6.8 printed pages.

The number of pages it would take to print the internet = 305.5 billion.

From here, of course, the experiment gets pretty easy. Multiplying 47 billion by 6.5 gives you 305,500,000,000 pages, approximately. This is, to be clear, just an estimate: There’s some room for error in my page-length average, and the internet’s changing all the time. But it’s still difficult to even contemplate how much material that comes out to: It’s like 212 million copies of Leo Tolstoy’s “War and Peace.”

That is a lot of copies of War and Peace,

Thank you to Stuff for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of Huffingtonpost

Apple To Produce More Than 5 Million Watches in First Run

The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple will produce 5-6 million Apple Watches in their first production run. It’s said that half of this number will be the low-end ‘Apple Watch Sport’, starting at $349. A third of those produced will be the stainless steel “mid-teer” ‘Apple Watch’ and the rest going to the highly expensive 18-karat gold ‘Apple Watch Edition’. It’s also said that the company expects to produce 1 million ‘Edition’ models a month following the launch.

“Orders for Apple Watch Edition – the high-end model featuring 18-karat gold casing – are relatively small in the first quarter but Apple plans to start producing more than one million units per month in the second quarter, the person said. Analysts expect demand for the high-end watches to be strong in China where Apple’s sales are booming.”

It’s worth pointing out that only 1 million Android Wear devices were sold last year – that being the entire year. So with the Apple Watch going on sale in April it will be interesting to see just how strong the demand will really be.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

Mental Millet: 1.62 Million Phone Orders in 72 hours

Chinese phone company and electricity provider Millet have just reported that after 72 hours of continuous operation, they’ve dispatched over 1.62 million total units of their new phone release amounting to a total sales amount of $254.5m USD. This shipping figure doesn’t include their TV orders processed in the same time frame according to technical director Wang Haizhou as announced today to the Chinese public via Weibo. He’s also stated that they will be in constant contact with the courier company, ensuring all users receive their phones as fast and efficiently as possible.

Unfortunately due to this being a Chinese-only brand, it’s quite hard to find any information about the phone, the company or release schedule/information. Comparing this to iPhone sales over the same time period which sat at 10 million devices – 1.62 million by Millet is certainly nothing shabby for a one-country project.

Many users reportedly begun receiving their brand-new Millet phones in the early hours of the 73rd hour onward as Millet’s couriers seem to have been keeping their word. If you’re capable of having a read, here’s their official Weibo release as published by Wang Haizhou.

Information and images courtesy of MyDrivers

Dota2 Makes the Front Page of The New York Times

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again – eSports is becoming mainstream. Whether you agree with video games being classified as a ‘real sport’ or not, there is no denying that through recent developments in the eSports scene, it’s becoming something very big and very real.

We reported recently of Valve’s Dota 2 international tournament being aired on ESPN which was only fitting given it’s massive 10 million dollar prize purse. But now eSports has reached another pinnacle – Dota 2 finds its way to the front page of the New York Times.

The story reported covers the rise of eSports and marks the beginning of a series detailing how computer games are being developed into a serious spectator sport.

Alongside Twitch.tv being recently purchased by Amazon for $970 million, ESPN airing The International finals on cable television and the amazing numbers that video game sales are generating today, we’re extremely keen to see where eSports is headed next.

Do you classify eSports as a real sport? What would change your view?

Image courtesy of Premium Times

Sony’s PlayStation Reported to Outsell Microsoft’s Xbox by 3:1

Sony’s first quarter 2014 financial report is looking very good for the company, having posted a net income of $261 million. The company is said to have sold 3.5 million PS4 and PS3 consoles, a 2.4 million increase compared to the Q1 2013 statistics. Aside from PS3 and PS4 sales, Sony shows its Vita, PSP and Vita TV sales figures separately, having them up from 600,000 units last year to 750,000 units this year.

Sony’s game division also reported a $43 million profit this year, compared to the $164 million operation loss last year. Sony and its PlayStation have had some rough times in recent years, having its PS3 show gradual declines in sales. This means that PS4’s figure could be estimated to be at around 2.4 million yearly increase. The company is said to also note a major increase in revenue from its network services, leading to the conclusion that users have a high rate of using the PS+ subscription with its new PS4 console.

Microsoft is also said to have sold only 1.1 million Xbox units over the same time period, which means that Sony is outselling Microsoft’s consoles at a ratio of 3:1. Though the Xbox is still selling very well, it is no match when comparing it to its PS4 rival. This means that PS3 sales do not look too bright, but Sony is showing signs of another console dominance, similar to the PS2 back in its days.

Thank you Forbes for providing us with this information
Image courtesy of Forbes

ESPN to Air 10 Million USD Dota 2 Gaming Tournament

As released today, Valve has announced ESPN will be showing live coverage of their 10 million dollar electronic sports tournament, simply labeled ‘The International’.

The International has been run yearly since 2011, with Valve pitting 1.6 million dollars of funded prize pool in recent times. To help increase this incentive, Valve pitched it to their Dota2 community for further support. For $10 USD, any player can purchase a ‘compendium‘ which delivers $2.50 into the prize pool directly and also give the user a bunch of in-game items, skins and benefits. Doing the math, this means roughly 8.4 million was raised directly from the communities donation, with a ton more going directly to the game manufacturer.

Currently, the International has just finished its playoff stages and has come up with a final eight teams all fighting for the trophy. As according the Valves press release, ESPN are now set get in on the action:

“Valve today announced that coverage of The International Dota 2 Championships will be presented in collaboration with ESPN on its live multi-screen sports network, ESPN3. In addition, an exclusive show previewing the final match will be presented on ESPN2 on Sunday at 8:30 pm Pacific. Live access to ESPN2 is also available on digital platforms via WatchESPN.” Steampowered

Valves Erik Johnson commented on the partnership:

“From the success of the Compendium to the collaboration with ESPN, this year’s International really demonstrates how much competitive gaming has grown to rival traditional sports. We believe the teams have also pushed to a new level of play this year and will further demonstrate the incredible advances made across this tournament since it first began three short years ago.” Steampowered

This is huge news for the eSports community, whom are always pushing for their favorite pastime (or in some cases, occupation) to be pushed into the mainstream-media spotlight. Another positive note is that this years 10 million dollar prize pool is a massive jump to that of 2013, which grossed only 2.8 million in comparison. This may be just the push that eSports needs to make its way into more homes.

Wondering how this 10 million dollar prize pool matches up with ‘regular’ sporting events? Thanks to Tournament.com we’ve had it laid out easily for us.

For those who don’t have the ability to watch on ESPN, Twitch.tv will be running multiple online streams of the finals.

Is there anything else valve have up their sleeve? We’re waiting with twitching anticipation for any further announcements.

Image courtesy of Gosu Gamers

8 Million Concurrent Users on STEAM During Summer Sale

Recently STEAM has reached a new milestone, hitting over 8 million concurrent users during their Summer Sales. With the exact peak being 8.020,813, this was reached during their Summer Sale, Encore Day over the last weekend.

Last December was when STEAM broke the 7 million milestone with November 2012 marking their 6 million figure.

As a whole, STEAM has previously reported a rise to 75 million active users in January 2014 which was an increase from 65 million in October 2013. To put this growth into perspective, the 65 million user mark was reached by a 30% increase in only 12 months!

STEAM has firmly planted itself globally as an industry heavyweight, often being branded by it’s fans with with memes based around it’s sales, Gabe Newell, Half-Life 3 predictions and empty wallets. For those feeling the personal pain of an after-STEAM-Sale hangover, we’ll leave you with this video to ease your pain with a slight chuckle. Unfortunately for those who own and operate ‘conventional’ PC game stores, STEAMs growth can only be seen as a thorn in your side.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yr2GdRBDOmU[/youtube]

Image courtesy of Polygon

Mobile Game Dev Millionaires feel…Guilty?

The New Yorker released an article about the “pressures” that game developers can incur making millions of dollars on cheap games.

Taken from the article is the following quote from Rami Ishmail, a game dev from the Netherlands that developed Ridiculous Fishing which is available on iOS:

Ever since I was a kid I’ve watched my mom wake up at six in the morning, work all day, come home, make my brother and me dinner—maybe shout at me for too much ‘computering,’ ” he said. “My first thought that day was that while I was asleep I’d made more money than she had all year. And I’d done it with a mobile-phone game about shooting fish with a machine gun.

Would you feel guilty? Or would you be pulling off a Scrooge McDuck and swim in all your cash? Tell us what you think.

Thanks to The New Yorker for this interesting piece.

 

BBC Sport App Quick Off the Starting Block

For a large number of us, Sport is less of a hobby but more like a religion and that could be either towards football, golf, rugby, horse racing so on and so forth. In the UK especially and globally, BBC sport has a big presence and its sport pages on-line gets a constant stream of hits day in day out from fanatics wanting to keep up to date with the latest scores, fixtures and up to date news. Due to this, the BBC released a whole new mobile app just over seven weeks ago to give users the freedom to get all their updates in an easy and convenient location.

The app is a spin off following the success of the app that was released for the London 2012 Olympic Games last summer and although it was initially only available to iOS users in the UK to start, three weeks ago it went to the international download stores and just under a week ago it became available to UK Android users as well.

Fresh reports are coming from the BBC that the new app has not only been successful in its initial few weeks of download, but it has sailed right past the point of over 1 million downloads and given traffic to the BBC Sport site in general a huge boom in traffic. The BBC has stated that January just gone was a record month for overall traffic towards their sport sections and with over 42 million unique visitors and 1 billion page views, the record that was set last summer at the 2012 games has been well and truly smashed.

This drive in traffic and rapid rate of downloads goes to prove that there is a rapid shift towards the use of smartphones and tablets as we have been noting for quite a while now and with a 13% year-on-year gain in mobile traffic for the BBC, this number is only set to rise.

The mobile app can be downloaded from the Apple App Store and Google Play