Xiaomi said that a US court had removed it from a list of companies classified as “Communist Chinese military companies (CCMC).” The company was one of several Chinese firms to be blacklisted in the final days of the Donald Trump administration.
“The company reiterates that it is an open, transparent, publicly-traded, independently operated and managed corporation,” Xiaomi Chairman Lei Jun said in the statement.
The court filing marks a reversal in policy after Joe Biden’s administration took over the President’s office. Three Chinese telecom companies were delisted from American stock exchanges like the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).
The relief comes after Xiaomi filed a lawsuit against the government in February. A judge proceeded to temporarily block the order against Xiaomi, saying it was “deeply flawed.” The two parties came together on a mutual agreement, ending the spat out of court and marking a fresh ray of hope in Sino-US ties.
The blacklist is different from the US Entity list, which includes Huawei and DJI. The blacklist means American investors will be prohibited from buying their securities and will have to divest their holdings by the end of the year.
Even though Xiaomi does not have any considerable presence in the US, being in the good books is worth a lot. Huawei’s ban has massively damaged its reputation outside of China, and even apps like TikTok have come under fire in countries like India due to Chinese ties.
Google introduces a new AI model called Gemini
Already in the Pixel 8 Pro
Artificial intelligence is the story of 2023. While the hype might have simmered down since the middle of the year, the segment is still pushing towards more advancements for the future. Unbothered by the dominance of OpenAI, Google has introduced its latest large language model called Gemini.
Touted as Google’s most flexible model yet, Gemini can understand text, code, audio, images, and videos. Though Google has not shared exactly how many parameters that the model can handle, the company says that Gemini can perform all the tasks you’d expect an LLM to do more accurately and more quickly.
Gemini will come in three flavors, spanning several markets: Nano, Pro, and Ultra. As the name implies, Gemini Nano is the model’s smallest variant. Starting today, the Pixel 8 Pro will start getting Nano to enhance the flagship’s on-device generative AI. The biggest improvements are naturally coming to the device’s camera capabilities. Photos and videos should be clearer and brighter, regardless of lighting conditions.
Meanwhile, Gemini Pro will come to Google’s other offerings. Bard, for example, is getting a huge upgrade, allowing for more intuitive replies. The same model will also come to Search, Ads, Chrome, and Duet AI.
Now, the beefiest of the three, Gemini Ultra is meant to further development in the field. While the previous two are available now, Ultra is coming next year. The premium model will mostly cater to enterprise customers and developers. However, if you want to try it for yourself, Google is also launching the top-tier model to an upcoming version of Bard called Bard Advanced.
US calls out NVIDIA for helping China in AI segment
Immediate sanctions coming for repeated violations
The tensions between the United States and China are still going strong. As the American government continues to curb Chinese companies from operating on American soil, some officials are seeking to expand their crusade against American companies helping China get around ongoing bans. Recently, a U.S. official has called out NVIDIA for allegedly helping China in acquiring state-of-the-art technology.
In a recent talk at the Reagan National Defense Forum (via Fortune), U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo warned participants that China must not obtain America’s best technology, specifically in the AI segment, at all costs. American companies, she says, should follow export restrictions imposed by her office.
Raimondo isn’t settling on idle threats. The secretary specifically called out NVIDIA as a company who continues to skirt around ongoing restrictions. When the Commerce Department imposes a new restriction, NVIDIA would design a chip sitting right below what is allowed. Though the move is legally allowed, Raimondo argues that it breaks the spirit of the law: denying the best technology from China. A chip close enough to the restriction will still grant China the necessary tools to catch up with the United States.
Raimondo seeks to establish a better dialogue with chipmakers to appropriately impede China. If the companies continue to create chips that “enable [China] to do AI, I’m going to control it the very next day,” she said.
Though the secretary’s words don’t indicate explicit sanctions coming to NVIDIA anytime soon, the company is certainly skating on very thin ice in the eyes of the Commerce Secretary.
Nokia is suing Amazon and HP
For using video-related technologies
Nokia isn’t just a company for smartphones. The company is also responsible for several technologies across the industry. As surprising as it is for regular consumers to discover Nokia’s effect on this industry, it’s also quite a shock to discover how many companies are currently stepping on the Finnish company’s toes. Nokia is currently suing Amazon and HP for infringing on several patents.
As confirmed by Arvin Patel, Nokia’s Chief Licensing Officer, Nokia is going ahead with cases against Amazon for “the unauthorized use of Nokia’s video-related technologies in its streaming services and devices.” The case involves technologies that Amazon used for Prime Video including video compression and content delivery. Amazon has not specifically explained the intricate workings of these technologies.
HP is also under fire for using other video-related technologies. Amazon is much more mum about HP’s use of the patented technologies. However, the announcement confirms that HP relies heavily on these technologies in their current lineup of products and services.
Nokia does say that litigation was not its first choice. However, the lack of an amicable resolution between these two companies necessitated the legal case.
Neither Amazon nor HP have responded to what they think of the ongoing legal pursuits against them.
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