News Posts matching #COVID-19

Return to Keyword Browsing

BioWare & EA Cancel Development of Anthem NEXT

In the spirit of transparency and closure we wanted to share that we've made the difficult decision to stop our new development work on Anthem (aka Anthem NEXT). We will, however, continue to keep the Anthem live service running as it exists today. Since Anthem's launch, the team has been working hard to continually improve the game, releasing multiple updates that brought with them a variety of improvements and introduced new content to play. Towards the end of 2019 we expanded on that effort and started working on a more fundamental restructure of the game.

During the development we've provided updates revealing some of the team's work through blog posts and conversations with you on social media and it's been inspiring for us to see the positive reactions and feedback. I've been incredibly proud of the work the team has been doing, and excited to see and play each new build of the experience.

Unity Releases 2020 Gaming Benchmark Report

Unity, the world's leading platform for creating and operating real-time 3D (RT3D) content, today released the 2021 Gaming Report: Unity Insights from 2020 and Predicted Trends for 2021, which provides a comprehensive look at how gaming changed for both players and creators one year into the pandemic. With more than 2.8 billion monthly active consumers of content created or operated with Unity solutions, this report represents the largest dataset on COVID-19's impact on gaming. For a free copy of Unity's 2021 Gaming Report, please visit this page.

"It's still too early to tell if changed habits will become the new norm once the pandemic is over, but given our understanding of past player behavior changes, it would be surprising to see many players revert," said Ingrid Lestiyo, Senior VP and General Manager, Operate Solutions, Unity. "In a year where online entertainment content - more than ever - became the cornerstone of social connections for so many when seeking a semblance of normalcy, Unity Operate Solutions was there to provide reliable, scalable solutions that helped keep the experiences connected and players engaged. Our amazing creators are here for that reason, and our mission is to enable them to focus on, and produce more, content with the technology we provide. While the nature of work may have changed for many game studios over the last year, the tools that help to power their success continued to deliver results that kept players happy, and revenue for developers of all sizes growing."

Intel Apparently Discounting 10th-Gen CPUs in Bid to Claw Market from AMD

Intel has apparently begun discounting its desktop CPUs, perhaps in a bid to try and maintain market share earning momentum the company garnered in the last few months. As AMD struggles to keep up with consumer demand for its latest Ryzen 5000 series, Intel looks to be capitalizing on its vertical integration (as well as the fact that Intel owns its own fabs and fabricates in a more than mature 14 nm process). A interesting move by the blue giant, who has generally opted out of a price reduction strategy - a move that might make Intel look on the back foot, and as an alternative budget brand, to the incommensurately smaller AMD.

Various retailers have been carrying Intel inventory with much reduced prices over their official MSRP. Amazon, for example, is offering the Intel Core i7-10700K for $344, down from its average pricing of $383. In the same retailer, the iGPU-less i7-10700F processor is down from $315 one month ago to just $229. Odds are that this is an Intel decision because if one considers the amount of demand on PC products and components due to COVID-19, it's very likely that consumers who can't get an AMD 5000-series CPU will still choose to purchase hardware - even if it has to be from Intel. So retailers eschewing part of their profits at a time like this seems slightly off-character.

SK hynix Inc. Reports Fiscal Year 2020 and Fourth Quarter Results

SK hynix Inc. today announced financial results for its fiscal year 2020 ended on December 31, 2020. The consolidated revenue of fiscal year 2020 was 31.9 trillion won while the operating profit amounted to 5.013 trillion won, and the net income 4.759 trillion won. Operating margin of for the year was 16%, and net margin was 15%.

"Due to the global pandemic and the intensifying trade disputes last year, the memory market showed sluggish trend," said Kevin (Jongwon) Noh, Executive Vice President and Head of Corporate Center (CFO) at SK hynix. "In the meantime, the Company stably mass-produced its main products such as 1Znm DRAM and 128-layer NAND Flash." Noh also explained, "The Company expanded its server market share based on its quality competitiveness, which resulted in an increase in the revenue and the operating profit by 18% and 84%, respectively, compared to the previous year."

Gabe Newell Confirms That Valve Has Multiple Games In Development

Gabe Newell who is currently residing in New Zealand has recently confirmed in a new interview that his company Valve "definitely has games in development that they're going to be announcing". With the positive release of Half-Life: Alyx the company plans to create further single-player games and Gabe noted that there is a lot of momentum within Valve to do so.

Gabe Newell has been living with his family in New Zealand since early 2020 when they decided to stay in the country after a holiday due to the countries successful management of COVID-19. He has now been granted New Zealand residency in principle and is actively considering transferring Valve operations and major events to the country. This includes hosting the companies DOTA 2 and CS:GO annual esports tournaments which had to be canceled in 2020 and "strong interest" from employees for relocation.

Shipped Pre-built PC Systems See 13% Rise in Sales in 2020 Compared to 2019

The International Data Corporation (IDC) has revealed PC shipping growth numbers for 2020 - counting desktops, notebooks (including Chromebooks) and workstations (but excluding laptops and servers), and the results are clear. In a currently-pandemic world, and with the urge and necessity for teleworking efforts so as to reduce personal exposure to risk environments, we've seen an unprecedented demand for technological components. Whether in shortages for the latest "comfort" technologies such as dedicated graphics cards, latest-gen consoles, or even webcams, it's been clear that citizens of the world have been increasingly investing their money in technological devices. This need - either for work, for bridging social distances through the Internet, or for entertainment - has led the pre-built PC ecosystem shipments to increase as much as 13% in 2020 - and a global shipment number set at 302.6 million units.

This year-over-year (YoY) increase is bolstered, mainly, by rises in sales throughout Q4 of 2020, where global PC shipments achieved an outstanding 26% increase from Q4 2019 - in the fourth quarter of 2020 alone, 91.6 million units were shipped. In that particular quarter, Lenovo led the top three vendors with a 25.2% share of the sales, followed by HP (20.9%) and Dell (17.2%). Apple appears in fourth place with a mere 8% market share, but shows the strongest growth among the top 5 sellers, at 49.2% YoY - and that's with Apple's comparatively small product portfolio when put against any of the other top three vendors.

DisplayPort 2.0 Implementations Delayed, Will Surface Late 2021

DisplayPort 2.0 was supposed to see its implementation beginning by the end of 2020, but that time has come and gone without a single DisplayPort 2.0-touting product on sight. According to VESA, the rollout has been delayed mostly due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which prevented the standards body to perform its PlugTest events, where engineers and hardware developers convene to discuss, tinker, and decide on the standard's implementation. VESA held multiple of these events per year, but none in 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic; thus, the delay we are now witnessing surged.

VESA plans to have their first 2021 PlugTest event in Spring of this year, however, and aims to see products on the shelves later, and likely not before 2H 2020. The standards body said that there are, indeed, DisplayPort 2.0 monitors currently in-development, but that these too have been affected by the lack of PlugTests. DisplayPort 2.0 is an update to the current 1.4 implementation, and currently, there are no launched products (monitors, graphics cards, etc) that can make use of the new version. The new standard will technically support up to 80 Gbps max, nearly three times the currently available bandwidth in the DisplayPort 1.4 spec. DisplayPort Alt Mode 2.0 also brings most of these capabilities to USB Type-C connectors via the USB 4.0 revision.

Noctua Passive Heatsink Launch Postponed According to 2021 Roadmap

Noctua has recently updated their 2021 product roadmap pushing a number of products back one quarter including their passive CPU cooler. The passive CPU cooler, black NF-A12x25 fans, black NH-U12A, and NH-U12A heatsinks have all been delayed from Q1 2021 to Q2 2021 the only product which remains on track for a Q1 2021 release is the redux line CPU cooler. The release of white Noctua fans has also been pushed from Q2 2021 until Q3 2021, products expected to release in Q3 and Q4 2021 remain on track. These new delays are likely due to the return of COVID-19 lockdowns and are only estimates which are subject to change.

Minecraft Earth Set to be Shut Down in June

Mojang has recently announced that they will be shutting down their Augmented Reality Minecraft Earth mobile free-to-play game on June 30th. This decision comes as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic limiting movement and collaborative play which are vital for the game. Mojang plans to re-allocate its resources and invest in areas more valuable for the Minecraft community. The game will receive one final update today which removes all in-app-purchases and reduces time requirements for in-game tasks. Players who made any purchase in the game will receive a free copy of Minecraft Bedrock Edition.
Mojang
Minecraft Earth was designed around free movement and collaborative play - two things that have become near impossible in the current global situation. As a result, we have made the difficult decision to re-allocate our resources to other areas that provide value to the Minecraft community and to end support for Minecraft Earth in June 2021.

Steam Breaks Another Record with 25 Million Concurrent Players

Steam has started off 2021 by breaking it's concurrent player record with a new peak of 25,416,720 players. This new record comes after the previous peak of 24 million was reached in December. This increase in concurrent players can be attributed to the launch of Cyberpunk 2077 and the COVID-19 lockdowns across the world. Several older titles such as Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Dota 2, and Rust all continue to provide a large number of concurrent players. This record is likely to be broken again as lockdowns continue.

Arm Based Fugaku Supercomputer Retains #1 Top500 Spot

Fugaku—the Arm technology-based supercomputer jointly developed by RIKEN and Fujitsu—was awarded the number one spot on the Top500 list for the second time in a row. This achievement further highlights the rapidly evolving demands of high-performance computing (HPC) that Arm technology uniquely addresses through the unmatched combination of power efficiency, performance, and scalability.

In addition to the great work RIKEN and Fujitsu have done, we're seeing more adoption for Arm-based solutions across our ecosystem. ETRI, the national computing institute of the Republic of Korea, recently announced plans to adopt the upcoming Neoverse V1 (formerly code-named Zeus) CPU design, which feature Arm Scalable Vector Extensions (SVE), for its K-AB21 system. ETRI has set a goal of 16 teraflops per CPU and 1600 teraflops per rack for AB 21 (which stands for 'Artificial Brain 21') while reducing power consumption by 60% compared to its target.

LLNL's New 'Ruby' Supercomputer Taps Intel for COVID-19 Research

Intel today announced that Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) will leverage Intel Xeon Scalable processors in "Ruby," its latest high performance computing cluster. The Ruby system will be used for unclassified programmatic work in support of the National Nuclear Security Administration's (NNSA) stockpile stewardship mission, for researching therapeutic drugs and designer antibodies against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, and for other open science work at LLNL.

Ruby was built in collaboration with Intel, LLNL, Supermicro and Cornelis Networks. The system consists of more than 1,500 nodes, each outfitted with Intel Xeon Scalable processors, and features 192 gigabytes of memory. Ruby will deliver 6 petaflops of peak performance and is expected to rank among the world's top 100 most powerful supercomputers.

Lenovo Delivers Record Results, Fueled by Strong Q2 Growth

Lenovo Group (HKSE: 992) (PINK SHEETS: LNVGY) today announced record Group revenue in the second quarter of US$14.5 billion, up 7% year-on-year and with all businesses showing strong growth. Profit showed even stronger growth, with record pre-tax income of US$470 million, up 52% compared to the same quarter a year earlier, while net income also increased by 53% year-on-year to a record US$310 million. In addition to record quarterly results, Lenovo's financial strength and sustainability has been further validated recently with strong inaugural investment grade ratings from Moody's, Standard & Poor's and Fitch, and a successful global notes offering. Basic earnings per share for the second quarter were 2.59 US cents or 20.08 HK cents. Lenovo's Board of Directors declared an interim dividend of 6.6 HK cents per share.

"Our record results this quarter reflect our ongoing commitment to meeting the needs of the rapidly growing work-, learn-and play-from-home economy. All of our core businesses delivered year-on-year growth, while our Software and Services revenue grew to a new record," said Yuanqing Yang, Lenovo Chairman and CEO. "As the world continues to adjust to the "new normal," we are confident in the long-term growth potential of both devices and cloud infrastructure. We will continue to leverage our core competences of operational excellence and global/local footprint, while accelerating our service-led transformation to better grasp opportunities and drive sustainable growth."

Los Alamos National Laboratory Deploys HPE Cray EX 'Chicoma' Supercomputer Powered by AMD EPYC Processors

Los Alamos National Laboratory has completed the installation of a next-generation high performance computing platform, with aim to enhance its ongoing R&D efforts in support of the nation's response to COVID-19. Named Chicoma, the new platform is poised to demonstrate Hewlett Packard Enterprise's new HPE Cray EX supercomputer architecture for solving complex scientific problems.

"As extensive social and economic impacts from COVID-19 continue to grip the nation, Los Alamos scientists are actively engaged in a number of critical research efforts ranging from therapeutics design to epidemiological modeling," said Irene Qualters, Associate Laboratory Director for Simulation and Computing at Los Alamos. "High Performance Computing is playing a critical role by allowing scientists to model the complex phenomena involved in viral evolution and propagation."

NVIDIA and Atos Team Up to Build World's Fastest AI Supercomputer

NVIDIA today announced that the Italian inter-university consortium CINECA—one of the world's most important supercomputing centers—will use the company's accelerated computing platform to build the world's fastest AI supercomputer.

The new "Leonardo" system, built with Atos, is expected to deliver 10 exaflops of FP16 AI performance to enable advanced AI and HPC converged application use cases. Featuring nearly 14,000 NVIDIA Ampere architecture-based GPUs and NVIDIA Mellanox HDR 200 Gb/s InfiniBand networking, Leonardo will propel Italy as the global leader in AI and high performance computing research and innovation.

NVIDIA Building UK's Most Powerful Supercomputer, Dedicated to AI Research in Healthcare

NVIDIA today announced that it is building the United Kingdom's most powerful supercomputer, which it will make available to U.K. healthcare researchers using AI to solve pressing medical challenges, including those presented by COVID-19.

Expected to come online by year end, the "Cambridge-1" supercomputer will be an NVIDIA DGX SuperPOD system capable of delivering more than 400 petaflops of AI performance and 8 petaflops of Linpack performance, which would rank it No. 29 on the latest TOP500 list of the world's most powerful supercomputers. It will also rank among the world's top 3 most energy-efficient supercomputers on the current Green500 list.

Folding @ Home Bakes in NVIDIA CUDA Support for Increased Performance

GPU Folders make up a huge fraction of the number-crunching power of Folding@home, enabling us to help projects like the COVID Moonshot open science drug discovery project evaluate thousands of molecules per week in their quest to produce a new low-cost patent-free therapy for COVID-19. The COVID Moonshot (@covid_moonshot) is using the number-crunching power of Folding@home to evaluate thousands of molecules per week, synthesizing hundreds of these molecules in their quest to develop a patent-free drug for COVID-19 that could be taken as a simple 2x/day pill.

As of today, your folding GPUs just got a big powerup! Thanks to NVIDIA engineers, our Folding@home GPU cores—based on the open source OpenMM toolkit—are now CUDA-enabled, allowing you to run GPU projects significantly faster. Typical GPUs will see 15-30% speedups on most Folding@home projects, drastically increasing both science throughput and points per day (PPD) these GPUs will generate.

Editor's Note:TechPowerUp features a strong community surrounding the Folding @ Home project. Remember to fold aggregated to the TPU team, if you so wish: we're currently 44# in the world, but have plans for complete world domination. You just have to input 50711 as your team ID. This is a way to donate efforts to cure various diseases affecting humanity that's at the reach of a few computer clicks - and the associated power cost with these computations.

AMD COVID-19 HPC Fund Adds 18 Institutions and Five Petaflops of Supercomputer Processing Power to Assist Researchers

AMD today announced a second round of high-performance technology contributions to assist in the global fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. AMD is now contributing high-end computing systems or access to Penguin-On-Demand (POD) cloud-based clusters powered by 2nd Gen AMD EPYC and AMD Radeon Instinct processors to 21 institutions and research facilities conducting COVID-19 research. With 12 petaflops of total supercomputing capacity now awarded, the combined compute capacity donated through the AMD COVID-19 HPC Fund would rank among the fastest supercomputers in the world according to the most recent Top500 list.

"AMD is proud to be working with leading global research institutions to bring the power of high performance computing technology to the fight against the coronavirus pandemic," said Mark Papermaster, executive vice president and chief technology officer, AMD. "These donations of AMD EPYC and Radeon Instinct processors will help researchers not only deepen their understanding of COVID-19, but also help improve our ability to respond to future potential threats to global health."

NVIDIA: GeForce RTX 3080 Reviews Delayed, RTX 3070 Availability Confirmed

NVIDIA in a GeForce community forums post by staff member, announced that reviews of the GeForce RTX 3080 Founders Edition have been delayed to September 16, with the review NDA lifting at 6:00 AM Pacific Time. This NDA was originally slated to be lifted on September 14. According to a Reddit post by an NVIDIA representative "NV-Tim," the delay was in response to certain reviewers requesting more time from NVIDIA as COVID-19 impacted their sampling logistics.

In other news, NVIDIA announced that its $499 (starting) GeForce RTX 3070 graphics card will be available on October 15, 2020. The performance segment graphics card is hotly anticipated by the gaming community as the other two products in the series—RTX 3080 and RTX 3090—are enthusiast segment products. NVIDIA claims that the RTX 3070 beats the RTX 2080 Ti in performance, which means the card should be capable of 1440p high refresh-rate gaming, and 4K UHD gaming at 60 Hz.

COVID-19 Drives Rise in Global Fab Equipment Spending, SEMI Reports

Soaring pandemic-inspired demand for chips that power everything from communications and IT infrastructures to personal computing, gaming and healthcare electronics will drive an 8% increase in global fab equipment spending in 2020 and a 13% increase in 2021, SEMI announced today in its World Fab Forecast report. Rising demand for semiconductors for datacenter infrastructures and server storage along with the buildup of safety stock as U.S.-China trade tensions intensify are also contributing to this year's growth.

The bullish trend for overall fab equipment investments comes as the semiconductor industry recovers from a 9% decline in fab spending in 2019 and navigates a roller-coaster 2020 with actual and projected spending drops in the first and third quarters mixed with second- and fourth-quarter increases. See figure below:

Seagate Updates IronWolf and IronWolf Pro NAS HDD Portfolio with New 18TB HDD and two new SSDs

Seagate Technology, a world leader in data storage and management solutions, today announced the results of a global survey of 3,000 small and medium sized business (SMB) decision-makers. The survey, commissioned by Seagate, reveals that despite economic headwinds, existing SMB IT infrastructure for many SMBs has shown resilience, and a majority of SMBs believe business data will play an important role in their long-term recovery plans. The company also announced an update to its IronWolf and IronWolf Pro Network Attached Storage (NAS) drive lines, aimed at home and small office environments, with new 18 TB capacity HDD and new SATA SSD models. These new drives deliver unrivaled speed, capacity, and stamina to bring reliable, scalable, and consistent performance to NAS solutions.

Despite the rapid and unexpected shift to remote working during the COVID-19 pandemic, existing SMB IT infrastructure proved resilient, according to Seagate research. More than half (54%) of SMB decision-makers reported no difficulty in accessing files or company data remotely, and 61% reported similar productivity levels to when their employees are in the office. 45% of SMB decision-makers reported their company's existing data infrastructure was more resilient than expected during the pandemic. All SMBs included in the study have fewer than 250 employees, and the majority have fewer than 50.

NAND Flash Revenue Rises 6.5% QoQ in 2Q20 Due to Pandemic-Induced Demand Growth for Cloud Services, Says TrendForce

The NAND Flash industry benefitted from strong demand for PCs and servers in 2Q20 as the COVID-19 pandemic caused a demand surge for cloud services and technologies that are related to working from home, according to TrendForce's latest investigations. This, in turn, kept demand high for SSDs. However, the smartphone and consumer electronics markets had not recovered from the impact of the pandemic. The demand for these products therefore declined compared to the previous quarter. In 2Q20, total NAND Flash bit shipment and ASP both experienced a minor increase of about 3% QoQ, while NAND Flash revenue reached US$14.5 billion, a 6.5% increase QoQ.

Razer Beats Expectations With Record High Revenue and Positive Adjusted EBITDA for 1H 2020

Razer, the leading global lifestyle brand for gamers, announces unaudited financial results for the six months ended 30 June 2020 (1H 2020). "2020 has been a year like no other for all of us around the world. Despite the global market uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Razer has had a spectacular start to the year, driven by dominant brand position, user base expansion and stay-at-home trends," said Min-Liang Tan, Co-Founder and CEO of Razer.

"The global "stay-at-home" situation has boosted user engagement with gaming and esports to record levels. With our gamer/ youth-centric ecosystem of hardware, software and services, Razer is well-positioned to capture the opportunities of these secular trends. The fundamentals of our business remain as solid as ever, thanks to our entrenched brand leadership, compelling offerings across hardware, software and services and strong execution. We are confident that these factors, coupled with our strong operating cost discipline and our strong cash position of over US$500 million, put us in good stead, even during times of challenging global economic conditions," he added.

DRAM Revenue Rises by 15.4% in 2Q20, with Possible Decline in Prices Expected for 3Q20, Says TrendForce

The last cyclical upturn in DRAM contract prices began at the start of 2020 and was led by server DRAM, according to TrendForce's latest investigations. In 2Q20, the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic shocked the global economy, but OEMs maintained or even stepped up procurement of components because they feared disruptions in the supply chain. As a result, DRAM suppliers' bit shipments surpassed expectations for the quarter, in turn widening the overall increase in DRAM ASP and raising the global DRAM revenue by 15.4% QoQ in 2Q20 to US$17.1 billion.

Nevertheless, TrendForce indicates that server OEMs are now carrying a rather high level of DRAM inventory after aggressively stocking up for two consecutive quarters. At the same time, customers of enterprise servers are holding back on procurement because the economic outlook is getting bleaker and more uncertain. Since server DRAM has the unique role of leading cyclical changes, this category is going to be first to experience price drop in the next downturn and thereby pull prices down for other types of DRAM products. As such, TrendForce forecasts at best a flattening of product shipments and decrease in DRAM prices in 3Q20, with DRAM suppliers suffering a decline in profitability.

Apple Hits $2 Trillion Valuation Mark, Just 2 Years After it Hit $1 Trillion

Apple is now valued at two trillion dollars! The tech giant became the world's most valuable company, clocking unfathomable growth in value. "It took Apple 42 years to reach $1 trillion in value. It took it just two more years to get to $2 trillion," writes the New York Times. Almost all of Apple's second trillion dollars in valuation came in just the past 28 weeks, as the world reeled with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Much of Apple's rise is attributable to measures by the U.S. Federal Reserve this March, allaying investor fears as capital markets crashed around the world, as governments clamped down on normal economic activity. Tech stocks have particularly benefited from the measures, as investors find them to be the next new "flight to safety" (a safe investment option in the face of calamity, akin to gold bullion). At $2 trillion, Apple is valued higher than the annual nominal gross domestic product of all but 7 countries (IMF measurement).
Return to Keyword Browsing