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Samsung Launches Highest-capacity Mobile DRAM

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., the world leader in advanced memory technology, today announced that it has begun mass producing the highest-capacity mobile DRAM - the industry's first 12-gigabyte (GB) low-power double data rate 4X (LPDDR4X) package - optimized for tomorrow's premium smartphones. Featuring higher capacity than most ultra-thin notebooks, the new mobile DRAM will enable smartphone users to take full advantage of all the features in next-generation smartphones.

"With mass production of the new LPDDR4X, Samsung is now providing a comprehensive lineup of advanced memory to power the new era of smartphones, from 12GB mobile DRAM to 512GB eUFS 3.0 storage," said Sewon Chun, executive vice president of Memory Marketing at Samsung Electronics. "Moreover, with the LPDDR4X, we're strengthening our position as the premium mobile memory maker best positioned to accommodate rapidly growing demand from global smartphone manufacturers."

NVIDIA Ceases Support for 3DVision, Mobile Kepler

NVIDIA via a customer help post has announced that their 3DVision work will be ceasing come April 2019. Release 418 of NVIDIA's GeForce Game Ready Drivers, and all other driver packages, will cease to provide support and improvements to 3DVision across the titles that are already covered by the technology. Users who want to keep 3DVision support will have to stay with the 418 release. Extended support for issues already present in the latest 3DVision release will still be granted support by NVIDIA until April 2020.

Like 3D TVs, mobile and desktop computers with 3D-capable screens have dwindled to almost zero in recent years, with the technology proving to be more of a novelty than an actual addition to users' computing experience. The NVIDIA support post also states that driver support for their Kepler-based graphics cards will cease as of April 2019. Desktop Kepler is still supported.

NVIDIA Adds New Options to Its MX200 Mobile Graphics Solutions - MX250 and MX230

NVIDIA has added new SKUs to its low power mobility graphics lineup. the MX230 and MX250 come in to replace The GeForce MX130 and MX150, but... there's really not that much of a performance improvement to justify the increase in the series' tier. Both solutions are based on Pascal, so there are no Turing performance uplifts at the execution level.

NVIDIA hasn't disclosed any CUDA core counts or other specifics on these chips; we only know that they are paired with GDDR 5 memory and feature Boost functionality for increased performance in particular scenarios. The strange thing is that NVIDIA's own performance scores compare their MX 130, MX150, and now MX230 and MX250 to Intel's UHD620 IGP part... and while the old MX150 was reported by NVIDIA as offering an up to 4x performance uplift compared to that Intel part, the new MX250 now claims an improvement of 3.5x the performance. Whether this is because of new testing methodology, or some other reason, only NVIDIA knows.

EA Stocks Dive 13% With Disappointing Battlefield V Sales, Mobile Revenue

EA stocks today have taken a dive of 12.83% (17% at the worst case scenario, with a slight rebound in the meantime), at the moment of writing, compared to their opening hours. The descent, which represents a dip towards a $80.61 valuation per share compared to the $92.52 at the opening market, followed the release of the company's Q3 FY19 Financial Results, caused by lower than expected sales from Battlefield V and lower than expected revenue from EA's mobile efforts. This is capitalism at its finest - the 7.3 million sales of Battlefield V (an impressive number by any metric) fell close to a cool million short of projected sales by this time, and that is enough for the market to correct their expectations.

EA's mobile business saw a YoY fall of 22%, which did little to assuage investors and provide a positive note for the underperforming Battlefield V. It's interesting to note how interesting the markets can be: on the surprise announcement of the new, Respawn-developed Apex Legends, there was no significant change in EA's stock valuation, despite this launch meaning a new, hopefully rich, revenue source for the publisher. Although considering TechPowerUp's overall sentiment regarding that games' launch (not representative of the entire community), it seems that EA won't be banking much on our users.

Mobile NVIDIA GeForce RTX GPUs Will Vary Wildly in Performance, Clocks Lowered Substantially

NVIDIA is in the process of rolling out the first implementations of its RTX 2000 series GPUs in mobile form, and if the going is as is being reported, it's going to be a little rough for users to actually extrapolate their performance from product to product. This is because manufacturers are apparently getting a whole lot of leeway in how to clock their products, according to their solution's thermal characteristics and design philosophy.

What this means is that NVIDIA's RTX 2080 Max-Q, for example, can be clocked as low as 735 MHz, which is a more than 50% downclock from its desktop counterpart (1,515 MHz). The non-Max-Q implementation of NVIDIA's RTX 2080, for now, seems to be clocked at around 1,380 MHz, which is still a close to 200 Mhz downclock. Of course, these lowered clocks are absolutely normal - and necessary - for these products, particularly on a huge chip such as the one powering the RTX 2080. The problem arises when manufacturers don't disclose clockspeeds of the GPU in their particular implementation - a user might buy, say, an MSI laptop and an ASUS one with the exact same apparent configuration, but GPUs operating at very different clockspeeds, with very different levels of performance. Users should do their due research when it comes to the point of choosing what mobile solution sporting one of these NVIDIA GPUs they should choose.

Sonarworks Debuts True-Fi Mobile App, Demonstrates Personalized Audio Profiles at CES 2019

If you had not heard of Sonarworks prior to this or the press release that went out last week, you may not be alone. The Latvian company is a little over 6 years old, and has since already managed to grab attention of some of the largest players in the audio market, including car makers interested in stereos, DJs, music producers, and of course more typical headphone and speaker makers. Their True-Fi desktop program claims to calibrate headphones to where everyone is able to hear the same sound no matter where they are- provided you use a supported headphone. This makes use of software sound processing and filtering, and the process works well enough to where they say over 30,000 recording studios worldwide currently use their technology.

At CES 2019, Sonarworks demonstrated the mobile version of their True-Fi program, currently in the Apple and Google Play stores as unreleased versions that will remain free until ready, following which it will cost $3.99/month or $99 for a lifetime license (the desktop version costs $79 by itself at this time). I was able to try out the app at their suite, and then also at home on my own phone, and came out impressed with the changes made. I did happen to have one of the ~300 currently-supported headphones though, and Sonarworks say they are working on adding more all the time. Users can also specifically request support to their own headsets if not on the list, although that might involve round trip shipment to Latvia. Read past the break for more, including their equally exciting personalized audio feature coming later this year.

Sonarworks Releases Mobile App, Making the Ultimate Sound Experience Accessible Anywhere

Pioneering audio calibration software company Sonarworks has announced the launch of its new Sonarworks True-Fi mobile app at CES 2019. The revolutionary mobile app, which provides audio calibration references on both iOS and Android for nearly 300 headphone models, has already launched in 'early access' and will be available for purchase later this year in the App Store and Google Play at a price of $3.99 USD per month, or as a lifetime license for $99 USD. Existing Sonarworks customers who already own the desktop version will be provided a free upgrade option to a lifetime license for the mobile app.

Sonarworks True-Fi mobile app- provides consumers with the ultimate sound experience 'while on the go- supports wide a range of native file formats as well as content from iTunes and Android local content libraries. True-Fi mobile supports native file formats including MP3, WAV, AIFF, AAC and ALAC (iOS) and MP3, WAV, OGG (Vorbis) and AAC (Android).

Lenovo Confirms Mobile GeForce GTX 1160 GPU, Or Does It?

It was about 6 months ago that we posted a news story about how a Lenovo representative mentioned that the successor to NVIDIA's GeForce 10-series of GPUs would be named the 11-series. Fast forward in time, we know how that turned out with the recently announced RTX 20-series instead. The rumor mill has not taken a break over the holidays, however, with consistent postings and speculation online about how NVIDIA will announce not only the RTX 2060 at CES 2019, but also a whole new GTX 11-series accompanying it that is aimed to meet gaming needs without real-time ray tracing support and at a lower price point respective to the equivalent RTX SKU.

Perhaps it is fitting that Lenovo provides more fuel to this fire once again, with a listing of a mobile GeForce GTX 1160 (N18E) graphic solution on their upcoming Legion Y530 and Y7000P laptops. VideoCardz.com was quick to capture a screenshot of the specs listing, seen below, that describes it as a "next generation GPU", albeit with an asterisk hinting that the specification may not be final. Indeed, Lenovo has since changed the description on that product page to remove all signs of said 11-series mobile GPUs, and the LaptopMedia specs database for the Legion Y530 also now mentions a "GTX 2060" with 6 GB of VRAM instead. The only thing we know for sure is that we are not sure of anything, and it may well be that a GeForce 11-series, if it even exists, is a mobile-only platform. Hopefully CES will shed more light on this matter, and stay tuned for our coverage of the event accordingly.

Samsung Launches First Mobile SoC with AI-Accelerating Matrix Multiplication Cores

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., a world leader in advanced semiconductor technology, today announced its latest premium application processor (AP), the Exynos 9 Series 9820, equipped for on-device Artificial Intelligence (AI) applications. The Exynos 9820 features a fourth-generation custom CPU, 2.0-gigabits-per-second (Gbps) LTE Advanced Pro modem, and an enhanced neural processing unit (NPU) to bring new smart experiences to mobile devices.

"As AI-related services expand and their utilization diversify in mobile devices, their processors require higher computational capabilities and efficiency," said Ben Hur, vice president of System LSI marketing at Samsung Electronics. "The AI capabilities in the Exynos 9 Series 9820 will provide a new dimension of performance in smart devices through an integrated NPU, high-performance fourth-generation custom CPU core, 2.0Gbps LTE modem and improved multimedia performance."

Micron Announces Mass Production of Industry's Highest-Capacity Monolithic Memory

Micron Technology, Inc., today announced that it has begun mass production of the industry's highest-capacity and first monolithic 12Gb low-power double data rate 4x (LPDDR4x) DRAM for mobile devices and applications. This latest generation of Micron's LPDDR4 memory brings key improvements in power consumption while maintaining the industry's fastest LPDDR4 clock speeds, thereby delivering advanced performance for next-generation mobile handsets and tablets. In addition, Micron's 12Gb LPDDR4x doubles memory capacity to offer the industry's highest-capacity monolithic LPDDR4 without increasing the footprint compared to the previous generation product.

The exponential increase in usage of compute and data-intensive mobile applications such as artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality (AR) and 4K video has been accompanied with demands by mobile users to maximize battery life and performance and increase capacity. Next-generation mobile devices that integrate multiple high-resolution cameras and increasingly use AI for image optimization also require higher DRAM capacities to support these features.

As the industry transitions towards deployment of 5G mobile technology, the memory subsystem in mobile handsets will have to support these dramatically higher data rates and the associated processing of data in real-time. New applications built upon 5G technology will also be able to leverage the increased capabilities of the memory subsystem to enable new and immersive user experiences.

EEDAR: US Gaming Led by Mobile, Followed by PC, Console Gaming

A new report from EEDAR paints quite a rosy picture for PC gaming: much rosier than what most users would think it to be. That mobile gaming is the platform king is no secret: anyone and everyone seems to be rocking a smartphone these days, and every smartphone has a myriad of games available that are so easy to consume that practically everyone with a smartphone (particularly an Android one) qualifies as a gamer. The interesting bit comes in the result that PC gaming is ahead of console gaming in gamers' minds and usage.

VESA Publishes Display Compression Standard for Mobile Applications

The Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA ) today formally introduced the VESA Display Compression-M (VDC-M) standard, a new display interface compression standard designed for embedded mobile display applications, including smart phones and other hand-held devices. Developed in collaboration with the MIPI Alliance, VDC-M provides a higher level of compression ratio (up to 5:1) at the same visually lossless quality level as VESA's Display Stream Compression (DSC) standard (which offers up to 3:1 compression), with the trade-off of higher circuit complexity. VDC-M is the third compression standard in VESA's family of compression codecs, which include DSC 1.1 (introduced in 2014) and DSC 1.2 (introduced in 2017).

"VESA was a pioneer in the area of low-latency data compression specifically targeting the display interface," according to Bill Lempesis, executive director of VESA. "The initial application for VESA's effort in this area was the Embedded DisplayPort Standard (eDP) and MIPI DSI, both which currently use DSC 1.1, with the specific intent to increase battery life and reduce form factor. The success of this spearheaded our effort on DSC 1.2 for external displays, primarily focusing on increasing display resolution. Working again with MIPI through their liaison with VESA, we returned our focus on mobile displays with VDC-M, developing a display compression standard more optimized for smaller mobile devices such as smart phones."

MSI Unveils New Vortex W25 Desktop Workstation and Updated Mobile Workstations

MSI, a world leader in computer hardware, continues to innovate its workstation line with the Vortex W25 and updated WT75, WS63 and WE series of mobile workstations. The Vortex W25 is the world's first 2.5L desktop powered by NVIDIA's Quadro P5200 GPU. "The Vortex W25 is one of the smallest and most capable workstations on the market," said Andy Tung, President of MSI. "We first created the chassis for powerful gaming performance with the Vortex G25, but we believe the innovative design will translate easily to those who need desktop-grade power in a small form factor."

Vortex W25
The Vortex W25 is the world's first 2.5L desktop powered by the NVIDIA Quadro P5200 GPU. In addition to its powerful graphics card, the Vortex also comes equipped with the latest Intel 8th generation processor. The new processor with its six cores of computing power, is up to 30 percent more powerful than the previous generation. The Quadro GPU provides up to 40 percent more performance than its predecessor. These performance upgrades make the Vortex W25 ideal for high-end 3D or VR tasks.

PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds Goes Mobile

After being crowned as Steam's third best-selling game ever, PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG) is on its way to conquer the mobile world. Developed by LightSpeed & Quantum Studio and published by Chinese tech giant Tencent, PUBG Mobile has been soft launched in Canada. The game is now available for download at the Google Play Store. PUBG Mobile stays true to the PC version. It was developed on the Unreal Engine 4 and supports features that include 7.1 surround sound and in-game voice chat. For the time being, only the original Erangel map is in the mobile version. The minimum requirements consist of a smartphone with Android 5.1.1 and 2 GB of RAM. Although there is no mention of a minimum processor requirement, the developer states that the game is supported on more than 500 Android devices.

Mobile Coffee Lake CPU Scores Rear Their Head on Geekbench

Intel is gearing up towards launching their mobile CPU solutions based on the current desktop architecture, Coffee Lake. These mobile CPUs will bring Intel's increased core and thread counts philosophy to the mobile crowds, thus increasing overall performance due to the extra two cores and four threads on the top of the line processors.

The CPU that was benchmarked on Geekbench is the i7-8750H, a six-core, twelve-thread CPU with a 2.2 GHz base clock and up to 4.1 GHz Turbo speeds. Its L3 cache department makes do with a pretty respectable 9 MB, and all of this is wrapped in a 45 W TDP package. As it comes to scores, these show expected gains over Intel's previous generation Kaby Lake Core i7-7700HQ - around 20% in single-thread workloads, and a more impressive 50% boost in multi-threaded ones. Two Quanta systems based on the i7-8750H managed single-thread scores of 4700 and 5008, and multi-threaded marks of 17,504 and 20,715. A HP system using the same chip scored 4980 in the single-thread test and 19,402 in the multi-thread benchmark. All in all, impressive gains in the processing prowess department, though these are overwhelmingly derived from the extra cores and threads, and not from some spectacular microarchitecture improvements.

ASUS Announces New Slim and Light Monitors for Mobile Professionals

ASUS today announced ProArt PQ22UC and ZenScreen Go MB16AP, slim and light portable monitors created for designers, video producers and other professionals who often need to create and showcase work away from the office. ProArt PQ22UC features an extremely high contrast ratio due to its OLED panel and exclusive ASUS ProArt Calibration technology for highly accurate, vibrant and undistorted colors. ZenScreen Go MB16AP can be connected to a laptop or Android device, and provides more flexibility with a built-in battery. The new portable monitors will be on display at the ASUS Showcase Room at Wynn Las Vegas, from January 9-12, 2018.

ClockStone Software & Valve Come Together to Make Bridge Constructor Portal

We welcome all lucky applicants to Bridge Constructor Portal with our new vehicle-based test chambers, Quantum Tunnels and patented Aperture technology! For the last year we've been secretly working in our underground labs on the next iteration of the million-selling Bridge Constructor series. This new stand-alone title will release on PC, MacOS, Linux, mobile devices, and console, and fully embraces the Portal license, one of the most beloved video game franchises of the last decade.

Bridge Constructor Portal will blend the laws of structural engineering and technology straight from Aperture Laboratories into an exciting new game experience, all under the demanding gaze of GLaDOS. Bridge Constructor Portal will be released on December 20 2017 for Windows, MacOS and Linux as well as for mobile devices. The console versions will follow in early 2018.
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