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GLOBALFOUNDRIES and GlobalWafers Partnering to Expand Semiconductor Wafer Supply

GLOBALFOUNDRIES (GF ), the global leader in feature-rich semiconductor manufacturing, and GlobalWafers Co., Ltd. (GWC), one of the top silicon wafer manufacturers in the world, today announced an $800 million agreement to add 300 mm silicon-on-insulator (SOI) wafer manufacturing and expand existing 200 mm SOI wafer production at GWC's MEMC facility in O'Fallon, Missouri.

The silicon wafers produced by GWC are key input materials for semiconductors and an integral part of GF's supply chain. The wafers are used in GF's multi-billion dollar manufacturing facilities, or fabs, where they are used to manufacture the computer chips that are pervasive and vital to the global economy. Today's announcement expands GF's domestic silicon wafer supply from the United States.

Qualcomm Extends the Leadership of its 7-Series with the Snapdragon 780G 5G Mobile Platform

Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. announced the latest addition to its 7-series portfolio, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 780G 5G Mobile Platform. Snapdragon 780G is designed to deliver powerful AI performance and brilliant camera capture backed by the Qualcomm Spectra 570 triple ISP and 6th generation Qualcomm AI Engine, allowing users to capture, enhance, and share their favorite moments seamlessly. This platform enables a selection of premium-tier features for the first time in the 7-series, making next generation experiences more broadly accessible.

"Since introducing the Snapdragon 7-series three years ago, more than 350 devices have launched based on 7-series mobile platforms. Today, we are continuing this momentum by introducing the Snapdragon 780G 5G Mobile Platform," said Kedar Kondap, vice president, product management, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. "Snapdragon 780G was designed to bring in-demand, premium experiences to more users around the world."

GLOBALFOUNDRIES 22FDX RF Solution Provides the Basis for Next-Gen mmWave Automotive Radar

GLOBALFOUNDRIES (GF ), the global leader in specialty semiconductor manufacturing, and Bosch will partner to develop and manufacture next-generation automotive radar technology.

Bosch chose GF as its partner to develop a mmWave automotive radar system-on-chip (SoC) for Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) applications, manufactured using GF's 22FDX RF solution. ADAS applications help drivers stay safe by keeping a vehicle in the correct lane, warning of collisions, initiating emergency braking, assisting with parking, and more.

Qualcomm Announces World's First 10 Gigabit 5G Modem-RF System

Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. today announced the Snapdragon X65 5G Modem-RF System, its fourth-generation 5G modem-to-antenna solution. It is the world's first 10 Gigabit 5G and the first 3GPP release 16 modem-RF system, which is currently sampling to OEMs and targeting commercial device launches in 2021. Snapdragon X65 is the Company's biggest leap in 5G solutions since the commercialization of its first modem-RF system. It is designed to support the fastest 5G speeds currently available with fiber-like wireless performance and makes best use of available spectrum for ultimate network flexibility, capacity and coverage. In addition to the Snapdragon X65, Qualcomm Technologies also announced the Snapdragon X62 5G Modem-RF System, a modem-to-antenna solution optimized for mainstream adoption of mobile broadband applications.

Qualcomm Announces Cristiano Amon Appointed Chief Executive Officer-Elect

Qualcomm Incorporated today announced that its Board of Directors has unanimously selected Cristiano Amon to succeed Steve Mollenkopf as CEO, effective June 30, 2021. Mollenkopf informed the Board of his decision to retire as CEO following 26 years with the Company. Amon, who has worked at Qualcomm since 1995, is currently President of the Company. Mollenkopf will continue his employment with the Company as a strategic advisor for a period of time.

Mollenkopf, 52, became CEO in March of 2014. He began his career as an engineer and, for nearly three decades, has helped define and lead Qualcomm's strategy and technology roadmap. His work helped propel smartphones into the mainstream and made Qualcomm a leader in 3G, 4G and now 5G, and he also oversaw the expansion into new industry segments such as the Internet of Things (IoT), RF Front End and Automotive. He was also instrumental in the Company's rise as a smartphone technology supplier. In addition, Mollenkopf successfully guided the Company through a number of extraordinary circumstances and challenges and begins the CEO transition process with the Company stabilized and well-positioned to continue to grow and drive value.

Qualcomm Announces Next-Generation 5G Chipset - Snapdragon 888

During the first day of the Snapdragon Tech Summit Digital, Qualcomm Incorporated President, Cristiano Amon took the virtual stage with global industry leaders to highlight the critical role Qualcomm Snapdragon 8-Series mobile platforms have played to drive experiences forward for the next generation of devices. Qualcomm Technologies' innovation in the premium tier, coupled with the evolution of 5G, is accelerating and continuing to redefine immersive consumer experiences. The proliferation of these premium tier experiences has and will continue to enrich the lives of billions of smartphone users around the world.

"Creating premium experiences takes a relentless focus on innovation. It takes long term commitment, even in the face of immense uncertainty," said Cristiano Amon, president, Qualcomm Incorporated. "It takes an organization that's focused on tomorrow, to continue to deliver the technologies that redefine premium experiences."

NXP Advances 5G with New Gallium Nitride Fab in Arizona

NXP Semiconductors N.V. today announced the grand opening of its 150 mm (6-inch) RF Gallium Nitride (GaN) fab in Chandler, Arizona, the most advanced fab dedicated to 5G RF power amplifiers in the United States. The new internal factory combines NXP's expertise as the industry leader in RF power and its high-volume manufacturing know-how, resulting in streamlined innovation that supports the expansion of 5G base stations and advanced communication infrastructure in the industrial, aerospace and defense markets.

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Announces New 22FDX+ Platform, Extending FDX Leadership with Specialty Solutions for IoT and 5G Mobility

GLOBALFOUNDRIES (GF ), the world's leading specialty foundry, announced today at its Global Technology Conference the next generation of its FDXTM platform, 22FDX+, to meet the ever-growing need for higher performance and ultra-low power requirements of connected devices. GF's industry-leading 22FDX (22 nm FD-SOI) platform has realized $4.5 billion in design wins, with more than 350 million chips shipped to customers around the world.

GF's new 22FDX+ builds on the company's 22FDX platform, offering a broader set of features that provide high performance, ultra-low power, and specialty features and capabilities for the newest generation of designs. The differentiated offering will further empower customers to create chips that are specifically optimized for Internet of Things (IoT), 5G, automotive, and satellite communications applications.

Qualcomm Announces First Shipments of Qualcomm Cloud AI 100 Accelerator and Edge Development Kit

Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., a subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated, announced the Qualcomm Cloud AI 100, a high-performance AI inference accelerator, is shipping to select worldwide customers. Qualcomm Cloud AI 100 uses advanced signal processing and cutting-edge power efficiency to support AI solutions for multiple environments including the datacenter, cloud edge, edge appliance, and 5G infrastructure. The newly announced Qualcomm Cloud AI 100 Edge Development Kit is engineered to accelerate adoption of edge applications by offering a complete system solution for AI processing up to 24 simultaneous 1080p video streams along with 5G connectivity.

"Qualcomm Technologies is well positioned to support complete edge-to-cloud high performance AI solutions that lead the industry in performance per watt," said Keith Kressin, senior vice president and general manager, computing and edge cloud, Qualcomm Technologies. "Qualcomm Cloud AI 100 is now shipping to select worldwide customers and we look forward to seeing commercial products launch in the first half of 2021."

Analog Devices Collaborates with Intel on Radio Platform for Addressing 5G Network Design Challenges

Analog Devices, Inc. (ADI) today announced its collaboration with Intel Corporation to create a flexible radio platform that addresses 5G network design challenges and will enable customers to scale their 5G networks more quickly and economically. The new radio platform combines the advanced technology of ADI's radio frequency (RF) transceivers with the high performance and low power of Intel Arria 10 Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) giving developers a new set of design tools for more easily creating optimized 5G solutions.

The communications market is moving at a rapid pace to keep up with the strains put on bandwidth and latency as more people transact business digitally and consume and transmit data from everywhere. A significant increase in traffic over existing wireless networks is occurring in both private networks and public spaces. As a result, wireless operators are looking to shorten development times and cost-effectively implement new solutions that increase the capacity, performance and reliability of 5G networks. Through a mix of open standards and existing communication links, mobile network operators are developing a broader set of specifications and supporting a growing span of use cases.

Qualcomm Announces Snapdragon 865 Plus 5G Mobile Platform, Breaking the 3 GHz Barrier

Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. unveiled the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 Plus 5G Mobile Platform, a follow-on to the flagship Snapdragon 865 that has powered more than 140 devices (announced or in development) - the most individual premium-tier designs powered by a single mobile platform this year. The new Snapdragon 865 Plus is designed to deliver increased performance across the board for superior gameplay and insanely fast Qualcomm Snapdragon Elite Gaming experiences, truly global 5G, and ultra-intuitive AI.

"As we work to scale 5G, we continue to invest in our premium tier, 8-series mobile platforms, to push the envelope in terms of performance and power efficiency and deliver the next generation of camera, AI and gaming experiences," said Alex Katouzian, senior vice president and general manager, mobile, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. "Building upon the success of Snapdragon 865, the new Snapdragon 865 Plus will deliver enhanced performance for the next wave of flagship smartphones."

Qualcomm Introduces Third-Generation 5G Modem Called the Snapdragon X60

Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. today announced the Snapdragon X60 5G Modem-RF System, its third-generation 5G modem-to-antenna solution (the Snapdragon X60). Snapdragon X60 features the world's first 5-nanometer 5G baseband and is the world's first 5G Modem-RF System to support spectrum aggregation across all key 5G bands and combinations, including mmWave and sub-6 using frequency division duplex (FDD) and time division duplex (TDD), providing ultimate operator flexibility to uplift 5G performance utilizing fragmented spectrum assets. This 5G modem-to-antenna solution is designed to enhance the performance and capacity for operators worldwide while increasing average 5G speeds in mobile devices. Snapdragon X60 is engineered to accelerate network transition to 5G standalone mode through support for any key spectrum band, mode or combination, along with 5G Voice-over-NR (VoNR) capabilities.

AZIO's new Fokal Keyboard Series is Inspired by Retro Cameras, up for Pre-order

AZIO found a market segment all to themselves with their Retro peripheral lineup, which took the typewriter-style keyboard design and ran with it using rarely seen higher-end materials for the keyboard and mice including leather and wood. We saw also at Computex last year that the company wanted to make a new series of peripherals inspired by retro cameras, with the then-called Iris K-Pad being the first entry and based on the Leica analog camera design. Our coverage led to them being contacted by another entity that used the Iris name in this category already, so we feel somewhat responsible for AZIO having renamed it to the Fokal. We met AZIO at CES this past week, and they spoke more about the Fokal, including letting us know that the crowd-funding campaign is underway and already successful.

The Fokal moves away from the typewriter-style keycaps in favor of more traditional, and comfortable, keycaps and promises a fully customizable control knob which can be used for multimedia and lighting (RGB) controls by default, as well as being a joystick too. There is also full software support for more utility, with up to seven profiles on board for various use cases. The base unit is a 75% form factor keyboard as with their R.C.K. we saw recently, and there is a separate number pad unit for those who need it which is further built to suit number crunching with extra keys as seen below. The units can connect wirelessly over Bluetooth or RF, with a massive 5000 mAh battery for the primary unit promising weeks of use on a single cycle. The Indiegogo campaign, still going for another 24 days as of this post, has already hit ~400% of the goal, and units are expected to ship in April. Pricing with the current discounts range from $184/246, with MSRP going from $230/330 for the base unit/combo with number pad.

XIGMATEK Releases Poseidon RGB Mid-tower Case

XIGMATEK today released the Poseidon RGB (model: EN42272), an ATX mid-tower case that combines two tempered glass panels with a lavish use of RGB LED elements. The front and left-side panels of this case are tinted tempered glass panels. The front panel is accented by a vertical RGB LED strip running along the right side. XIGMATEK is including four 120 mm RGB LED fans with the case, three of these come pre-installed along the front intakes, and one as the case's sole rear exhaust. The fans and embedded LED strip feature 3-pin addressable-RGB inputs. An included 4-channel RGB LED controller drives the four, which features a tiny RF remote control that lets you cycle between presets and toggle individual lighting. The same controller doubles up as a 4-channel PWM fan-controller, which takes inputs from the remote. There is a significantly cheaper variant of this case (model: EN42265), which lacks the fans and combi-controller.

The XIGMATEK Poseidon features a conventional horizontally-partitioned case layout, with the upper compartment holding the motherboard tray that suopports ATX (and smaller) form-factors, while the bottom compartment holds a double of drive bays and the PSU bay. The case can take add-on cards up to 36 cm in length, CPU coolers up to 16.5 cm in height, and PSUs up to 17 cm in length. Storage areas include four 2.5-inch mounts, and two 3.5-inch/2.5-inch trays. Besides the three 120 mm intakes and one 120 mm rear exhaust, the case features two 120 mm top exhausts with a detachable dust filter. The case measures 400 mm x 205 mm x 450 mm (LxWxH). Front panel connectivity includes two each of USB 3.x type-A, and USB 2.0/1.1 ports, and HDA jacks. The company didn't reveal pricing.

Energous Receives FCC Certification for WattUp Wire-Free Charging Technology

Energous Corporation, the developer of WattUp, a revolutionary wire-free, power-at-a-distance charging technology, today announced Federal Communications Commission (FCC) certification of its first-generation WattUp Mid Field transmitter, which sends focused, RF-based power to devices at a distance. As the first FCC certification for power-at-a-distance wireless charging under Part 18 of the FCC's rules, this development represents a new era of wireless charging, and opens up a tremendous opportunity for the electronics industry.

Energous' WattUp Mid Field transmitter underwent rigorous, multi-month testing to verify it met consumer safety and regulatory requirements. As the first Part 18 FCC approved power-at-a-distance wireless charging transmitter, the certification marks a significant milestone for the consumer electronics industry and paves the way for future wireless charging ubiquity for nearly any small electronic device, including smartphones, tablets, fitness trackers, smart watches, earbuds, wireless keyboards and mice, smart speakers and more.
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