New GPUs Showcased at Intel’s Innovation Developer Event

Intel announced the consumer GPU brand Arc last year, which the company now says will begin delivering in Q4. The Arc A770 Limited Edition desktop gaming card will be available October 12, starting at $329, “the sweet spot of desktop graphics,” according to CEO Pat Gelsinger, who said the GPU “delivers 65 percent better peak performance versus competition on ray tracing.” Intel says other new GPU models, including the Arc Pro A30M for mobile unveiled last month at SIGGRAPH, will also come to market by the end of the year. The new GPUs feature built-in ray tracing hardware, machine learning capabilities and industry-first AV1 hardware encoding acceleration. Continue reading New GPUs Showcased at Intel’s Innovation Developer Event

NBA and Microsoft Team on New DTC Mobile Streaming App

The NBA becomes the latest sports league to court digital viewers, launching an app for streaming, personalization and socializing. The app is free to download, and NBA League Pass will be integrated into the app, with promotional pricing of $14.99 per month ($99.99 per season) for a standard package and $19.99 per month ($129.99 per season) for a premium subscription. The NBA App is a product of NBA Digital, the league’s joint venture with Turner Sports, and was built in partnership with Microsoft, the NBA’s cloud and artificial intelligence partner. Continue reading NBA and Microsoft Team on New DTC Mobile Streaming App

Nvidia Introduces AI-Powered GPUs and Cloud LLM Services

“Computing is advancing at incredible speeds. Acceleration is propelling this rocket, and it’s fuel is AI,” Nvidia founder and CEO Jensen Huang said in his 2022 GTC conference keynote, announcing two new AI services: the Nvidia NeMo large language model service, which helps customize LLMs, and the Nvidia BioNeMo LLM service, aimed at bio researchers. Nvidia also unveiled its GeForce RTX 40 Series GPUs, shipping Q4. Powered by the company’s new architecture, Ada Lovelace, the two new models — GeForce RTX 4090 and GeForce RTX 4080 — offer better ray tracing performance and AI-based neural graphics. Continue reading Nvidia Introduces AI-Powered GPUs and Cloud LLM Services

Adobe Will Purchase Digital Design Rival Figma for $20 Billion

Adobe announced it plans to purchase rival digital design suite Figma for $20 billion in cash and stock. The news was disclosed as part of its Q3 earnings report, which saw revenue of $4.43 billion, exceeding analysts’ expectations. Despite the healthy cashflow, Adobe says it may have to finance part of the deal, which will have to clear regulatory hurdles in a very pro-competition environment. Founded in 2011, Figma released its first product in 2015, leveraging the WebGL API to create real-time collaborative tools for web-based design teams “working together beyond company walls.” Figma lists Airbnb, Conde Nast and Github among its users. Continue reading Adobe Will Purchase Digital Design Rival Figma for $20 Billion

GoPro Unveils 3 New Models of Hero11 Black Action Camera

GoPro’s latest action camera, the Hero11 Black, which comes with an improved 1/1.9 sensor that offers impressive flexibility in “Full Frame” mode, which lets you shoot once, then output video at multiple aspect ratios (4K, 16:9 for YouTube; 9:16 for TikTok) with different framing but no loss in image quality. Video resolution tops out at to 5.3K at 60fps, with still grabs of 24.7 MP and 27 MP photos. Other new features include 10-bit color, an 8:7 aspect ratio (to complement the existing 16:9 and 4:3) and HyperSmooth 5.0, a notably improved iteration of GoPro’s image stabilization. Continue reading GoPro Unveils 3 New Models of Hero11 Black Action Camera

Aalyria: Google Spinout Plans to Deliver High-Speed Internet

Google’s Project Loon, a plan to use balloons to beam broadband Internet to unserved areas, was shut down in 2021 after eight years, but Loon’s core technologies have propelled a spinout, Aalyria, which is developing advanced networking and laser communications that far exceed anything available today, extending connectivity where there is no infrastructure “at an exponentially greater scale and speed,” according to the company. Aalyria’s first commercial client is the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU), a division of the U.S. Department of Defense that awarded an $8 million contract to develop high-speed Internet in space. Continue reading Aalyria: Google Spinout Plans to Deliver High-Speed Internet

Netflix Cutting Costs in Areas Such as Cloud, Staffing, Perks

Netflix, which said it lost almost one million subscribers in Q2, has been aggressively cutting costs, implementing a variety of measures that range from scaling back its real estate footprint to trimming cloud computing. While the streaming giant says the cuts have not significantly impacted content spending, it has laid off more than 400 employees in 2022 and has begun hiring more junior staff, according to reports. Macroeconomic trends have made belt-tightening common across the industry, but at Netflix it stands in stark contrast to years of explosive growth and free spending. Continue reading Netflix Cutting Costs in Areas Such as Cloud, Staffing, Perks

Microsoft Rolls Out Ampere-Powered ARM-Based Azure VMs

Microsoft’s new Azure Virtual Machines, featuring Ampere Altra ARM–based processors, will be generally available on September 1, debuting in 10 Azure regions and multiple availability zones worldwide. Microsoft says the VMs can also be included in Kubernetes clusters managed using Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS). Engineered to efficiently run scale-out, cloud-native workloads, Microsoft says that since the technology began previewing earlier this year hundreds of customers have tested the ARM-powered VMs “for web and application servers, open-source databases, microservices, Java and .NET applications, gaming, media servers and more.” Continue reading Microsoft Rolls Out Ampere-Powered ARM-Based Azure VMs

AWS Private 5G Lets Firms Build Their Own Mobile Networks

Amazon’s AWS cloud division has launched a new service designed to help companies deploy their own 5G networks. AWS Private 5G is initially available to AWS customers in select U.S. regions, including Ohio, Virginia and Oregon, but the company has plans to expand, including internationally, “in the near future.” Another early launch limitation is that despite its name, the service only currently supports 4G LTE, but plans to support 5G in the future, and either one will “give you a consistent, predictable level of throughput with ultra low latency,” AWS evangelist Jeff Barr said in a blog post. Continue reading AWS Private 5G Lets Firms Build Their Own Mobile Networks

Nvidia Unveils New Tools for AI, the Metaverse at SIGGRAPH

Nvidia founder and CEO Jensen Huang shared his vision for a computer graphics industry transformed by AI, the metaverse and digital humans. “The combination of AI and computer graphics will power the metaverse, the next evolution of the Internet,” Huang told attendees at SIGGRAPH 2022 in Vancouver. To support this transformation, Nvidia unveiled the Avatar Cloud Engine (ACE) and discussed plans to build out the Universal Scene Description (USD) industry standard, which Huang called “the language of the metaverse.” New extensions for Omniverse and graphics workflow optimizations using machine learning were also part of the mix.
Continue reading Nvidia Unveils New Tools for AI, the Metaverse at SIGGRAPH

Google Stadia Adds Party Stream and Resume Live Features

Google is introducing Stadia improvements including Party Stream, which lets players invite up to nine others to participate in a game session directly through the Stadia app, eliminating the need for a third-party intermediary. Friends can be invited to play along or just watch in any combination, limited to a total of 10. Stadia’s Party Stream chat makes voice and emoji reactions available. Party Stream is available beginning this week to desktop users and through the mobile web on Android. Also new, ”resume live stream” lets players switch Stadia games without having to end a live stream. Continue reading Google Stadia Adds Party Stream and Resume Live Features

Tech Firms Seek Energy Alternatives to Power Data Centers

Hotter temperatures are not only wreaking havoc on residential electric bills and power grids, but also on data centers, which are looking for reliable green backup power to prepare for “the new normal” and keep our planet’s collective knowledge accessible online through record heat. Cooling system failures resulting from the UK’s July heatwave resulted in Google Cloud’s London data centers going offline for a day, creating a ripple effect for customers as far off as the U.S. and in the Pacific region. Oracle’s London cloud-based data center was also impacted by what the company called “unseasonal temperatures.” Continue reading Tech Firms Seek Energy Alternatives to Power Data Centers

Amazon Reports Online Sales Are Down While Revenue Is Up

Amazon increased revenue by 7 percent to $121.2 billion in the second quarter, beating analyst expectations and sending the stock soaring 12 percent despite a $2 billion loss. That contrasts with a $7.8 billion profit for the same period last year. The loss was due in part to Amazon’s investment in the electric car company Rivian, whose value has plunged this year. “Despite continued inflationary pressures in fuel, energy, and transportation costs, we’re making progress on the more controllable costs we referenced last quarter, particularly improving the productivity of our fulfillment network,” said Amazon CEO Andy Jassy. Continue reading Amazon Reports Online Sales Are Down While Revenue Is Up

Avid Debuts ‘Media Production in the Cloud’ by Subscription

Avid is moving its workflow to the cloud, providing its popular on-site editing interface to distributed production teams that will now have instant access to assets across platforms, from broadcast and cable to web and social media. Geared towards news and sports operations, the Avid Media Production in the Cloud subscription service offers a secure and convenient way to integrate existing tools and workflows with the power of the cloud “without committing to a forklift overhaul or the need for additional training,” Avid director of solutions marketing, media and cloud Raul Alba said of the rollout. Continue reading Avid Debuts ‘Media Production in the Cloud’ by Subscription

Google’s Ad Growth Slows While Search Exceeds Projections

Alphabet had a rocky second quarter with revenue of $69.69 billion, up 13 percent from the same period in 2021, though net income was down 14.6 percent to $16 billion. It was Alphabet’s slowest growth rate since Q2 2020, when COVID-19 wreaked havoc on the economy. In a contracting 2022 advertising market, Alphabet posted 12 percent ad growth, totaling $56.3 billion for the quarter ended June 30 versus the same period the previous year. Ad growth was down substantially over the 69 percent increase of Q2 2022, but increased nonetheless where others are declining. Continue reading Google’s Ad Growth Slows While Search Exceeds Projections