Enterprise

San Miguel Corporation raises white flag, to sell telco assets to Globe and PLDT

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Life moves fast, especially in the Philippine telecommunications industry. Earlier this year, the talk of the town was a potential joint venture between Australia’s Telstra and local conglomerate San Miguel Corporation (SMC), which would have brought an end to the telco duopoly of the Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company (PLDT) and Globe Telecom.

We all know how that turned out — how the ray of hope was shuttered just as quickly as it surfaced. And now, the possibility of SMC, a diversified firm with interests that stretch from food and beverage to oil and infrastructure, providing mobile and internet services is all but kaput.


A report from the Philippine Daily Inquirer today claimed SMC is expected to sell its telecommunications assets to PLDT and Globe in a blockbuster joint deal worth $1 billion. The agreement could be signed off this morning, the paper’s source added. You may recall a similar incident in 2011, when PLDT bought then-rival Sun Cellular from tycoon John Gokongwei.

The highlight of the agreement is the 700MHz spectrum PLDT and Globe stand to acquire, should the deal go through. The wireless spectrum is highly valued for its ability to cover larger areas and provide better cellular coverage inside buildings.

Globe had previously launched a full-on campaign with the promise to “improve internet speed in the country” to get the issue of ownership and distribution of the spectrum in the public discourse, but to no effect. PLDT echoed the same call. Now that they’re getting what they wanted all along, customers should hold them accountable to their words. Because, as anyone in the archipelago knows, delivering quality internet services at reasonable rates should be the top priority of any carrier, with or without the fire of competition.

[irp posts=”7155" name=”Cyber attacks take down half the Internet”]

Source: Philippine Daily Inquirer
Image credit: Wikimapia

Enterprise

Report: Huawei to lose support from ARM, hampering its own chipsets

Things are getting even worse

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Despite Huawei’s gradual loss of support from US-based companies such as Google, Intel, and Broadcom, the Chinese manufacturer has faith in its ability to produce its own replacements. However, with the latest development, even that strategy may be facing a potentially catastrophic obstacle.

BBC has reported that chipset designer ARM informed employees to halt all business with Huawei. ARM is a vital resource for most mobile devices, because even though some brands like Samsung and Huawei can produce their own system-on-chip (SoC), the technologies need to be licensed from ARM before production.


Since ARM is based in the UK, this added blacklisting wasn’t seen as a possibility at first. Unfortunately, the company appears to be complying with the US’ trade ban, the reason being that its designs hold “US origin technology.”

Huawei’s semiconductor firm HiSilicon creates the Kirin processors found in the majority of the company’s smartphones and tablets. Most, if not all, require the ARM license. According to the same report, the upcoming Kirin 985 is clear of the ban, but anything after that will most likely have its production halted.

While Google and Huawei were given an additional 90 days to sort these issues out, no such order was given to ARM just yet, saying that the closed communication takes effect immediately. Huawei hasn’t given a statement about this as of writing.

Huawei is said to have enough components and licensing to last several months to a year of production, but that would only be a short-term solution. What lies ahead for Huawei may only get worse as more bad news rolls in.

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Enterprise

Singaporean, Philippine stores stop trading for Huawei phones

Consumers are going to online marketplaces instead

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A few days ago, the American government unleashed the most influential decision in recent smartphone history. Effective 90 days after the announcement, Huawei has been banned from conducting business with American companies. As a result, Google — and other relevant companiesblacklisted Huawei from its services.

Naturally, Huawei-induced paranoia is in full swing. Consumers have begun worrying over their favored handsets. Likewise, involved companies have begun assuaging everyone’s fears. Even then, fear is a difficult enemy to eradicate.


Case in point, Asian stores have started dropping Huawei devices from their business models. Particularly, smartphone retailers have ceased their trade-in programs for Huawei products. As reported by Reuters, Singaporean and Philippine markets are steering clear of the brand. Some stores have stopped selling Huawei products altogether.

According to the report, customers are rushing to sell their handsets as soon as possible. They have since flocked to trade-in programs and online marketplaces. For example, Huawei sales have doubled on Carousell, the popular online marketplace.

Unfortunately, brick-and-mortar retailers are not falling for the trend. “If we buy something that is useless, how are we going to sell it,” a Singaporean retailer said.

In the Philippines, smartphone stalls are expressing the same fear. Greenhills, a favored destination for smartphone reselling, has turned down Huawei phones. “We are no longer accepting Huawei phones. It will not be bought by our clients anymore,” a Greenhills saleswoman said. Meanwhile, some stalls are purchasing Huawei products only at 50 percent off.

At this rate, the Huawei ecosystem is slowly deteriorating. Consumers are dumping their handsets, regardless if old or new. Retailers are rushing to empty out their stocks. Owning a Huawei product is a risky gamble right now. However, if anything, no one knows how the situation will resolve itself as of yet.

SEE ALSO: Huawei and Google release official statements regarding trade blacklist

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Enterprise

Samsung launches its own 5x optical zoom smartphone camera

Just as good as the Huawei P30 Pro

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For some time now, Huawei has dominated the smartphone photography race. The company’s critically acclaimed P20 and P30 series have pushed the camera’s capabilities to its limits. Notably, this year’s Huawei P30 Pro flaunted a massive 10x hybrid zoom rear camera. The setup consists of a 4.7x optical module and a 48-megapixel sensor, creating a lossless image at 10x zoom. Even now, Huawei’s camera is one of the most impressive shooters to date.

Recently, smartphone makers have begun adopting the setup. Last month, OPPO launched its own 10x zoom variant found inside the Reno 10x Zoom. The industry is well on its way to a larger standard.


Now, Samsung has announced the successful development of a 5x optical zoom camera. Reported by the Korean ETNews, Samsung Electro-Mechanics has already started the manufacturing process, declaring the camera’s readiness for the market.

Image source: ETNews

Further, Samsung’s variant is reportedly ultra-slim, eliminating the need for a camera protrusion. Attached to a device, Samsung’s 5x optical zoom camera will ship with a flat rear panel. Samsung Electro-Mechanics also added in a sample image, showcasing the module’s capabilities.

Samsung will likely come with additional hardware and software upgrades, bringing image quality at par with the industry’s top guns. Currently, the Samsung S10 series uses an effective 2x optical zoom. The new 5x optical zoom module is a big upgrade for the brand.

Given the announcement, Samsung might ship the camera as early as the Galaxy Note 10. More realistically, the new module will likely ship with next year’s Galaxy S11 series. Of course, Samsung Electro-Mechanics is a different branch from the company’s mobile division. Ultimately, Samsung’s mobile division might have different plans. Only time will tell.

SEE ALSO: Samsung Galaxy A70: Price and availability in the Philippines

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