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AMD to Supply Only a Few Thousand Radeon RX 6700 XT GPUs for Europe at Launch

The global supply chain of graphics cards is currently not very well equipped to handle the massive demand that exists for the latest generation of GPUs. Just like we have seen with the launch of NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3000 series Ampere, and AMD Radeon RX 6000 series Big Navi SKUs, the latest generation graphics cards are experiencing massive demand. And manufacturers of these GPUs are not very well equipped to handle it all, so there is a huge scarce for GPUs in the global market. With AMD's recent announcement of the Radeon RX 6700 XT graphics card, things are not looking any better, and the availability of this GPU could be very tight at launch.

According to information obtained by Igor's Lab, AMD could supply only a few thousand Radeon RX 6700 XT GPUs for Europe as a whole. To be precise, Igor's Lab notes that "If you condense the information of various board partners and distributors to a trend, then there are, depending on the manufacturer and model, only a few pieces (for Germany) to a few thousand for the EU as a whole." This could be a very bad indication of AMD's supply of these new GPUs globally, not just for Europe. The company is currently relying on the overbooked TSMC, which can only produce a limited amount of chips at the time, and we don't know how much capacity AMD allocated for the new chip.

SiPearl to Manufacture its 72-Core Rhea HPC SoC at TSMC Facilities

SiPearl has this week announced their collaboration with Open-Silicon Research, the India-based entity of OpenFive, to produce the next-generation SoC designed for HPC purposes. SiPearl is a part of the European Processor Initiative (EPI) team and is responsible for designing the SoC itself that is supposed to be a base for the European exascale supercomputer. In the partnership with Open-Silicon Research, SiPearl expects to get a service that will integrate all the IP blocks and help with the tape out of the chip once it is done. There is a deadline set for the year 2023, however, both companies expect the chip to get shipped by Q4 of 2022.

When it comes to details of the SoC, it is called Rhea and it will be a 72-core Arm ISA based processor with Neoverse Zeus cores interconnected by a mesh. There are going to be 68 mesh network L3 cache slices in between all of the cores. All of that will be manufactured using TSMC's 6 nm extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUV) technology for silicon manufacturing. The Rhea SoC design will utilize 2.5D packaging with many IP blocks stitched together and HBM2E memory present on the die. It is unknown exactly what configuration of HBM2E is going to be present. The system will also see support for DDR5 memory and thus enable two-level system memory by combining HBM and DDR. We are excited to see how the final product looks like and now we wait for more updates on the project.

Epic Games Files EU Antitrust Complaint Against Apple

Epic Games today announced it has filed an antitrust complaint against Apple in the European Union (EU), expanding the company's fight to advance fairer digital platform practices for developers and consumers. The complaint, filed with the European Commission's Directorate-General for Competition, alleges that through a series of carefully designed anti-competitive restrictions, Apple has not just harmed but completely eliminated competition in app distribution and payment processes. Apple uses its control of the iOS ecosystem to benefit itself while blocking competitors and its conduct is an abuse of a dominant position and in breach of EU competition law.

The complaint complements legal processes already underway in both the US and Australia, as well as Epic's recent filing before the UK's Competition Appeal Tribunal. "What's at stake here is the very future of mobile platforms." Epic Games founder and CEO Tim Sweeney said today. "Consumers have the right to install apps from sources of their choosing and developers have the right to compete in a fair marketplace. We will not stand idly by and allow Apple to use its platform dominance to control what should be a level digital playing field. It's bad for consumers, who are paying inflated prices due to the complete lack of competition among stores and in-app payment processing. And it's bad for developers, whose very livelihoods often hinge on Apple's complete discretion as to who to allow on the iOS platform, and on which terms."

NVIDIA Faces Challenges: Qualcomm, Google, and Microsoft Protest Arm Acquisition

In September of last year, NVIDIA has officially announced that the current industry rumor about its big acquisition was true. The company has announced that it is acquiring Arm Limited from the Softbank Group. Paying as much as $40 billion for the purchase, NVIDIA is gaining access to the complete company, along with its extensive portfolio of IP and knowledge. That means that NVIDIA is not essentially a holder of the Arm ISA, which is the most dominant ISA within mobile processors. Such a deal, however, is a bit hard to process without some troubles popping up along the way. As Arm held a neutral position as IP provider, NVIDIA is expected to remain as such, and the company even promised to stay true to that.

However, not everything is going as planned. Before completing the acquisition process, NVIDIA must first comply with regulators from all around the world, including the US, UK, EU, and China. If any objections raise within those regions, they are to be interrogated. Today, Google, Microsoft, and Qualcomm have objected that NVIDIA's Arm acquisition is hurting the market and are urging antitrust officials to intervene. Mentioned companies believe that NVIDIA's move is hurting the market and the company could limit its competitors from accessing the IP, thus breaking Arm's neutral position as an IP provider. NVIDIA has made statements that Arm will remain in such a position, however, the skepticism of the mentioned companies is slowing the merger. Now all that remains is to see how the conflicted companies solve their worries.

EU Signs Declaration for 2 nm Node and Custom Processor Development

European Union has today processed a declaration that was signed by 17 member states about the development of a 2 nm semiconductor node and an advanced low-power processor. The declaration signed today proposes that the EU puts away 145 billion Euros for the development of the technologies needed to manufacture a 2 nm semiconductor manufacturing process, along with the development of a custom, low-power embedded processor designed for industrial applications. The 17 member countries include Belgium, France, Germany, Croatia, Estonia, Italy, Greece, Malta, Spain, The Netherlands, Portugal, Austria, Slovenia, Slovakia, Romania, Finland, and Cyprus. All of the countries listed are going to join the development of these technologies and will have the funds to do it over the next 2-3 years.
EU Declaration
To ensure Europe's technology sovereignty and competitiveness, as well as our capacity to address key environmental and societal challenges and new emerging mass markets, we need to strengthen Europe's capacity to develop the next generation of processors and semiconductors. This includes chips and embedded systems that offer the best performance for specific applications across a wide range of sectors as well as leading-edge manufacturing progressively advancing towards 2 nm nodes for processor technology. Using connectivity, where Europe enjoys global lead, as a major use case driver for developing such capacity enables Europe to set the right level of ambition. This will require a collective effort to pool investment and to coordinate actions, by both public and private stakeholders.

Intel Xe-HP "NEO Graphics" GPU with 512 EUs Spotted

Intel is preparing to flood the market with its Xe GPU lineup, covering the entire vector from low-end to high-end consumer graphics cards. Just a few days ago, the company has announced its Iris Xe MAX GPU, the first discrete GPU from Intel, aimed at 1080p gamer and content creators. However, that seems to be only the beginning of Intel's GPU plan and just a small piece of the entire lineup. Next year, the company is expected to launch two GPU families - Xe-HP and Xe-HPG. With the former being a data-centric GPU codenamed Arctic Sound, and the latter being a gaming-oriented GPU called DG2. Today, thanks to the GeekBench listing, we have some information on the Xe-HP GPU.

Being listed with 512 EUs (Execution Units), translating into 4096 shading units, the GPU is reportedly a Xe-HP variant codenamed "NEO Graphics". This is not the first time that the NEO graphics has been mentioned. Intel has called a processor Neo graphics before, on its Architecture day when the company was demonstrating the FP32 performance. The new GeekBench leak shows the GPU running at 1.15 GHz clock speed, where at the Architecture day the same GPU ran at 1.3 GHz frequency, indicating that this is only an engineering sample. The GPU ran the GeekBench'es OpenCL test and scored very low 25,475 points. Compared to NVIDIA's GeForce RTX 3070 GPU that scored 140,484, the Intel GPU is at least four times slower. That is possibly due to the non-optimization of the benchmark, which could greatly improve in the future. In the first picture below, this Xe-HP GPU would represent the single-tile design.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX Ampere AIB Cards Listed on Overclockers UK, Official EU/UK Pricing Published

NVIDIA just yesterday made a big announcement and forced everyone to turn their head and check out what are they doing. Today, we are finding the first listings of Add-In-Board (AIB) partner cards and their respective price points. Thanks to the findings of a Reddit user u/slyquick we have information about the pricing of RTX Ampere cards in the UK/EU, specifically on the Overclockers UK website. There are listed several models of AIB cards, covering the whole range of RTX 3070, 3080, and 3090. NVIDIA has officially published the UK/EU pricing of the cards with Founders Edition (FE) GeForce RTX 3070 costing $499 in the US, costing about £469. The OCUK website lists RTX 3070 AIB cards at £449 and the highest costing models are about £499.

Next up comes GeForce RTX 3080, a GPU costing $699 in the US, is being officially listed for £649 by NVIDIA. On the OCUK website pricing starts at £639, and goes as high as £848.99 for ASUS ROG Strix Gaming OC card. The bigger brother of the RTX Ampere lineup - the RTX 3090 - is priced at $1499, while NVIDIA lists it at £1399 for EU/UK pricing. AIB cards are going anywhere from the NVIDIA FE card at £1,399, all the way up to at £1589.99. This is a big markup compared to the FE model, however, AIB cards are known for providing better cooling solutions and better power delivery circuit.

TSMC Owns 50% of All EUV Machines and Has 60% of All EUV Wafer Capacity

TSMC had been working super hard in the past few years and has been investing in lots of new technologies to drive the innovation forward. At TSMC's Technology Symposium held this week was, the company has presented various things like the update on its 12 nm node, as well as future plans for node development. One of the most interesting announcements made this week was TSMC's state and ownership of Extreme Ultra-Violet (EUV) machines. ASML, the maker of these EUV machines used to etch the pattern on silicon, has been the supplier of the Taiwanese company. TSMC has announced that they own an amazing 50% of all EUV machine installations.

What is more important is the capacity that the company achieves with it. It is reported that TSMC achieves 60% of all EUV wafer capacity in the world, which is a massive achievement of what TSMC can do with the equipment. The company right now has only two nodes on EUV in high-volume manufacturing, the 7 nm+ node and 5 nm node (which is going HVM in Q4), however, that is more than any of its competitors. All of the future nodes are to be manufactured using the EUV machines and the smaller nodes require it. As far as the competitors go, only Samsung is currently making EUV silicon on the 7 nm LPP node. Intel is yet to release some products on a 7 nm node of its own, which is the first EUV node from the company.

Raja Koduri Previews "PetaFLOPs Scale" 4-Tile Intel Xe HP GPU

Raja Koduri, Intel's chief architect and senior vice president of Intel's discrete graphics division, has today held a talk at HotChips 32, the latest online conference of 2020, that shows off the latest architectural advancements in the semiconductor industry. So Intel has prepared two talks, one about Ice Lake-SP server CPUs and one about Intel's efforts in the upcoming graphics card launch. So what has Intel been working on the whole time? Raja Koduri took over the talk and has benchmarked the upcoming GPU and recorded how much raw power the GPUs posses, possibly counting in PetaFLOPs.

When Mr. Koduri got to talk, he pulled the 4-tile Xe HP GPU out of his pocket and showed for the first time how the chip looks. And it is one big chip. Featuring 4 tiles, the GPU represents Intel's fastest and biggest variant of Xe HP GPUs. The benchmark Intel ran was made to show off scaling on the Xe architecture and how the increase in the number of tiles results in a scalable increase in performance. Running on a single tile, the GPU managed to develop the performance of 10588 GFLOPs or around 10.588 TeraFLOPs. When there are two tiles, the performance scales almost perfectly at 21161 GFLOPS (21.161 TeraFLOPs) for 1.999X improvement. At four tiles the GPU achieves 3.993 times scaling and scores 41908 GFLOPs resulting in 41.908 TeraFLOPS, all measured in single-precision FP32.
Intel Xe HP GPU Demo Intel Xe HP GPU Demo Intel Xe HP GPU Demo

Samsung Rumored to Make Investment in GlobalFoundries

Today we are in for an interesting rumor. According to industry sources of Coreteks, Samsung is rumored to be preparing investment in GlobalFoundries manufacturing facilities. In the latest ave of Asian foundries getting away from China and getting close to EU and US soils, Samsung is the latest one to join the list. First, let's explain the situation. The Trump administration has been pushing TSMC to drop all orders from Huawei, and TSMC did it. That way, Huawei Technologies has lost a major chip supplier which enabled the company a competitive edge. Now, the company must turn to Chinese manufacturers and it can't use any US-made product.

Given that GlobalFoundries is a company headquartered in the US (Santa Clara, California), the company is an American corporation, which has fabs in the US, as well as in Europe. It is truly a global foundry system. Samsung, a Korean semiconductor manufacturer, has been rumored to invest in GlobalFoundries Dresden fab, located in Germany. The company will help GlobalFoundries expand its power supply capacity from 63 MegaWatts to 100 MegaWatts. The proposed expansion of GlobalFoundries Dresden fab would be funded exclusively by Samsung. So why is Samsung doing this? The answer to this question is pretty simple - to get closer to western markets. Even if GlobalFoundries has foundries all over the world, it is a US company at its core. So Samsung hopes that from this investment, it can get closer to US soil and gain some new customers in the future. After all, Samsung plans to become the world's biggest semiconductor manufacturer by 2030, the position currently held by its rival TSMC. Below you can check out the expansion plan illustrated by Coreteks:

XMG APEX 15 is a Laptop with AMD Ryzen 3950X CPU Inside

Have you ever wondered how a laptop with a desktop CPU that has 16 cores and 32 threads would look like on a laptop? Well, today is your lucky day as XMG, a German laptop maker, has decided to launch a laptop that has AMD's latest and greatest desktop CPU - the Ryzen 3950X 16C/32T monster. The 3950X CPU, while featuring a regular TDP of 105 W, has been configured to 65 W in Eco Mode, and it runs anywhere from 2.6 to 4.2 GHz. The CPU also isn't soldered to the motherboard and there is a full AM4 socket, that is capable of housing any 3000 series desktop CPU.

Besides a powerful CPU, there are options for NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 or RTX 2070 graphics cards, which drive a 15.6-inch Full HD 144 Hz IPS panel equipped with anti-glare technology. The GPUs are a "Max-P incarnation" as XMG calls it, which presumably means that they are designed for maximum performance i.e. possibly higher boost speeds. Additionally, you can configure the laptop with up to 64 GB of DDR4 2666 MHz RAM. This configuration, containing Ryzen 9 3950X, RTX 2070, 32 GB of RAM and 1 TB NVM, costs around 2631 EUR. For more configuration options, you can check out this website. Availability is supposed to be in 6-8 weeks.
XMG APEX 15 XMG APEX 15 XMG APEX 15 XMG APEX 15

Intel Xe Graphics to Feature MCM-like Configurations, up to 512 EU on 500 W TDP

A reportedly leaked Intel slide via DigitalTrends has given us a load of information on Intel's upcoming take on the high performance graphics accelerators market - whether in its server or consumer iterations. Intel's Xe has already been cause for much discussion in a market that has only really seen two real competitors for ages now - the coming of a third player with muscles and brawl such as Intel against the already-established players NVIDIA and AMD would surely spark competition in the segment - and competition is the lifeblood of advancement, as we've recently seen with AMD's Ryzen CPU line.

The leaked slide reveals that Intel will be looking to employ a Multi-Chip-Module (MCM) approach to its high performance "Arctic Sound" graphics architecture. The GPUs will be available in up to 4-tile configuration (the name Intel is giving each module), which will then be joined via Foveros 3D stacking (first employed in Intel Lakefield. This leaked slide shows Intel's approach starting with a 1-tile GPU (with only 96 of its 128 total EUs active) for the entry level market (at 75 W TDP) a-la DG1 SDV (Software Development Vehicle).

Europe Readies its First Prototype of Custom HPC Processor

European Processor Initiative (EPI) is a Europe's project to kickstart a homegrown development of custom processors tailored towards different usage models that the European Union might need. The first task of EPI is to create a custom processor for high-performance computing applications like machine learning, and the chip prototypes are already on their way. The EPI chairman of the board Jean-Marc Denis recently spoke to the Next Platform and confirmed some information regarding the processor design goals and the timeframe of launch.

Supposed to be manufactured on TSMC's 6 nm EUV (TSMC N6 EUV) technology, the EPI processor will tape-out at the end of 2020 or the beginning of 2021, and it is going to be heterogeneous. That means that on its 2.5D die, many different IPs will be present. The processor will use a custom ARM CPU, based on a "Zeus" iteration of Neoverese server core, meant for general-purpose computation tasks like running the OS. When it comes to the special-purpose chips, EPI will incorporate a chip named Titan - a RISC-V based processor that uses vector and tensor processing units to compute AI tasks. The Titan will use every new standard for AI processing, including FP32, FP64, INT8, and bfloat16. The system will use HBM memory allocated to the Titan processor, have DDR5 links for the CPU, and feature PCIe 5.0 for the inner connection.

Intel Gen12 iGPU With 96 Execution Units Rears Its Head in Compubench

Intel's upcoming Gen12 iGPU solutions are being touted as sporting Intel's greatest architecture shift in their integrated graphics technologies in a decade. For one, each Execution unit will be freed of the additional workload of having to guarantee data coherency between register reads and writes - that work is being handed over to a reworked compiler, thus freeing up cycles that could be better spent processing triangles. But of course, there are easier ways to improve a GPU's performance without extensive reworks of their design (as AMD and NVIDIA have shown us time and again) - simply by increasing the number of execution units. And it seems Intel is ready to do just that with their Gen12 as well.

An unidentified Intel Gen12 iGPU was benchmarked in CompuBench, and the report includes interesting tidbits, such as the number of Execution Units - 96, a vast increase over Intel's most powerful iGPU to date, the Iris Pro P580, with its 72 EU - and far, far away from the consumer market's UHD 630 and its 24 EUs. The Gen12 iGPU that was benchmarked increases the EU count by 33% compared to Intel's top performing iGPU - add to that performance increases through the "extensive architecture rework", and we could be looking at an Intel iGPU part that achieves some 40% (speculative) better performance than their current best performer. The part was clocked at 1.1 GHz - and the Iris Pro P580 also clocked to that maximum clock under the best Boost conditions. Let's see what next-gen Intel has in store for us, shall we?

Intel Says Its Upcoming Gen12 GPUs Will Feature Biggest Architecture Change In A Decade

Intel is slowly realizing plans to "one up" its GPU game starting from first 10 nm Ice Lake CPUs that feature Gen11 graphics, equipping users of integrated GPUs with much more performance than they previously got. Fortunately, Intel doesn't plan to stop there. Thanks to the recent pull request found on GitLab Mesa repository, we can now expect to receive biggest GPU performance bump in over a decade with the arrival of Gen12 based GPUs, found on next generation Tiger Lake processors.

In this merge request, Francisco Jerez, member of Intel's open source Linux graphics team, stated the following: "Gen12 is planned to include one of the most in-depth reworks of the Intel EU ISA since the original i965. The encoding of almost every instruction field, hardware opcode and register type needs to be updated in this merge request. But probably the most invasive change is the removal of the register scoreboard logic from the hardware, which means that the EU will no longer guarantee data coherency between register reads and writes, and will require the compiler to synchronize dependent instructions anytime there is a potential data hazard..."

SHERPA Consortium: If AI Could Feel, it Would Fear Cyber-attacks from People

Artificial intelligence (AI) is rapidly finding applications in nearly every walk of life. Self-driving cars, social media networks, cyber security companies, and everything in between uses it. But a new report published by the SHERPA consortium - an EU project studying the impact of AI on ethics and human rights that F-Secure joined in 2018 - finds that while human attackers have access to machine learning techniques, they currently focus most of their efforts on manipulating existing AI systems for malicious purposes instead of creating new attacks that would use machine learning.

The study's primary focus is on how malicious actors can abuse AI, machine learning, and smart information systems. The researchers identify a variety of potentially malicious uses for AI that are well within reach of today's attackers, including the creation of sophisticated disinformation and social engineering campaigns.

Several Gen11 GPU Variants Referenced in Latest Intel Drivers

The latest version of Intel Graphics drivers which introduce the company's latest UWP-based Graphics Command Center app, hide another secret in their INF. The file has pointers to dozens of variants and implementations of the company's next-generation Gen11 integrated graphics architecture, which we detailed in a recent article. Intel will implement Gen11 on two key processor microarchitectures, "Ice Lake" and "Lakefield," although later down the line, the graphics technology could trickle down to low-power Pentium Silver and Celeron SoC lines, too, with chips based on the "Elkhart Lake" silicon.

There are 13 variants of Gen11 on "Ice Lake," carved using execution unit (EU) count, and LP (low-power) aggressive power management. The mainstream desktop processors based on "Ice Lake," which are least restrained in power-management, get the most powerful variants of Gen11 under the Iris Plus brand. Iris Plus Graphics 950 is the most powerful implementation, with all 64 EUs enabled, and the highest GPU clock speeds. This variant could feature on Core i7 and Core i9 brands derived from "Ice Lake." Next up, is the Iris Plus Graphics 940, with the same EU count, but likely lower clock speeds, which could feature across the vast lineup of Core i5 SKUs. The Iris Plus 930 comes in two trims based on EU count, of 64 and 48, and could likely be spread across the Core i3 lineup. Lastly, there's the Iris Plus 920 with 32 EUs, which could be found in Pentium Gold SKUs. There are various SKUs branded "UHD Graphics Gen11 LP," with EU counts ranging from 32 to 64.

SilentiumPC Expands Armis AR5 Family of Cases With Three New Models

Following the recently introduced AR5X PC Case, three new variants joining the SilentiumPC Armis AR5 family. Being sensible mid-tower choices, these cases provide unparalleled balance of perfect design, features, quality and fair pricing for a wide variety of PC system configurations.

Sharing the same base chassis structure and features, the variants offer different pricing and equipment:
  • The base model, Armis AR5 features a solid flat side panel and two Sigma HP 120 mm fans.
  • Armis AR5 TG has a tempered-glass side panel and comes with two Sigma HP 120 mm fans.
  • Armis AR5 TG RGB comes with tempered-glass side panel, as well as two Sigma HP 120 mm fans, one Sigma HP Corona 120 RGB fan and Aurora Sync PRO illumination/PWM controller.

ASRock Prevented by AMD to Sell its Graphics Cards in the EU

It's been extensively reported that ASRock's primary motivation behind entering the graphics card market is the crypto-currency wave. The company stitched together a lineup of graphics cards based on AMD Radeon RX 500 series, with its fastest card being the RX 580 Phantom Gaming X. It's now being reported that AMD is preventing ASRock from selling its graphics cards in the EU. The reasons behind the move are unclear, but from what we can tell, ASRock hasn't been given a region-specific permission to sell its graphics cards in the EU. This probably indicates a swelling inventory of AMD Radeon graphics cards from other AIB (add-in board) partners, due to waning interesting in GPU-accelerated crypto-currency mining.

European Comission Fines Capacitor Producers In €254 Million Over Cartel Fraud

The European Comission has put out yet another fine to tech companies, joining some other multi-million dollar fines that have already been dolled out. The targets of the latest fine over cartel association and price manipulation is being pointed at nine Japanese capacitor manufacturers, which were found by the European Comission to have conspired towards unduly increasing capacitor pricing between the years of 1998 and 2012.

The companies named in the investigation aren't an exact match to those that were actually fined, though. Sanyo, Hitachi, Rubycon, ELNA, Tokin, NEC, Matsuo, Nichicon, Nippon Chemi-Con, Vishay Polytech, Holy Stone Holdings, and Holy Stone Enterprises, for instance, were named. However, Tokin, Elna, Rubycon, and Hitachi each received reductions in their respective fines for cooperating with the investigation. The largest single fine, totalling €97,921,000, was given to Nippon Chemi-Con. Sanyo, however, outsmarted all its competitors - the company dodged the fine altogether for bringing the matter to the attention of the Commission in the first place. This is an interesting tactic - proceeding to take part in a cartel, extract profits, and then turn over the cartel associates to regulating bodies at the price of immunity. A part of the ruling justifying the fines can be seen after the break.

EU Plans to Add 3% Tax On Tech Giants' Revenue Based on Customers' Location

"Treat equally that which is equal, treat differently that which is different" seems to be the motto of the new EU proposal for increased taxation on tech giants. The proposal, which will be presented just this Wednesday (March 21st), could lead to increased taxation to tech giants that do business with EU customers by as much (or as little, depending on your point of view) as 3% of their gross revenue (the value still isn't final, but should stay within 1% and 5%). It isn't clear how the customer location business will be defined, but it seems that the EU believes its citizens provide increased revenues for companies than other citizens in other parts of the less developed world do.

This move specifically aims to capture real growth and value of digital-first companies, such as Facebook and Amazon. These are types of companies that the EU feels aren't being taxed proportionally (meaning, they currently provide less than they should to public coffers) to the true value they derive from the region. As most EU matters, any tax proposal will need the unanimous approval of all 28 current members before turning into law, so one country alone could block it.

European Commission Fines Google in €2.42 billion for Antitrust Violations

Another year, another European Commission fine for an antitrust violation. This time, the target of the fine is none other than Google. In what could be the most important antitrust ruling in recent years (which overshadows even Microsoft's 2004 browser fine), the EC has found that Google has systematically worked towards increasing prominence in search results to those displayed by the company's own comparison shopping service, dubbed "Google Shopping". "Google Shopping" started in 2004, when Google entered the comparison shopping market in Europe, with a product that was initially called "Froogle", renamed "Google Product Search" in 2008 and since 2013 has been called "Google Shopping".

However, it would seem that Froogle wasn't all that successful. When Google entered the comparison shopping markets with Froogle, there were already a number of established players, which dampened the company's market foray. The EC states that Google was aware that Froogle's market performance was relatively poor, pointing to one internal document from 2006 that stated, quite plainly, that "Froogle simply doesn't work".

Kaspersky Backs Away From Threat of Antitrust Lawsuit against Microsoft / Win10

Russian-based Kaspersky Labs is backing away from its earlier threat of an antitrust case filing with the European Commission, instead opting for a "wait and see" approach with regards to its complaints with Microsoft over Windows 10 and its included security software "Windows Defender."

Kaspersky Labs has been threatening to press an antitrust action since November 2016, when in a November blog post titled "That's it. I've had enough!" Chief Executive Eugene Kaspersky complained that Microsoft did not give developers ample time to prepare for a new Windows release, and was using their "compatibility checker" tool to effectively remove competing software in favor of Windows Defender.

EU Still Concerned about Windows 10 User Privacy

Despite Microsoft announcing changes recently to the Windows 10 installation process, Europe's biggest privacy watchdogs remain unconvinced.

A group comprised of the EU's 28 authorities responsible for enforcing the data protection law, known as the "Article 29 Working Party," asked Microsoft earlier last year to clarify how they process and handle data for various purposes, including advertising.

AMD Cuts Prices of Radeon R9 285

As the Spring PC upgrade season heats up, AMD decided to woo mainstream gamers away from NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 960, by working with retailers in the EU to introduce price-cuts on its Radeon R9 285 graphics card. The card can now be had for under 180€ (incl taxes). The GTX 960, in comparison, starts at 192€ (incl taxes). The R9 285 offers higher performance than the GTX 960. It is, however, let down by higher power consumption and noise figures. Based on the 28 nm "Tonga" silicon, the R9 285 offers 1,792 stream processors based on AMD's Graphics CoreNext 1.2 architecture, 112 TMUs, 32 ROPs, and a 256-bit wide memory interface, holding 2 GB of memory.
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