With the solar industry growing, electronics companies are developing specialized hardware to boost the power output from solar arrays.
Start-up Tigo Energy, which makes a device to optimize and monitor solar panels, on Wednesday said that it has raised $10 million from electronics manufacturer Inventec Appliances and others.
Also on Wednesday, chip manufacturer STMicroelectronics introduced an integrated circuit designed to automatically adjust the power output of individual solar modules to improve the performance of an array of panels. The chip can compensate for variations in individual solar-panel output due to shading, heat, and solar intensity, according to the company.
National … Read more
An analyst research note Tuesday shed more light on what makes Apple's iPhone 4 tick, noting that the recently released Samsung Wave S8500 smartphone uses the same central processing unit, or CPU, as the iPhone 4.
The Apple A4 chip used in both the iPad and iPhone 4 is manufactured by Samsung, which has a longstanding "foundry" (chip manufacturing) relationship with Apple.
On Tuesday, UBM TechInsights added some color to the dynamics of the Apple-Samsung collaboration by claiming that the Samsung Wave S8500 smartphone uses the same 1GHz core as the iPad and, by extension, the iPhone … Read more
A senior research fellow in the U.K. says he has become the first person in the world to be infected by a computer virus.
Technically, the chip Mark Gasson inserted into his hand is infected, which one could argue keeps the virus limited to the domain of the chip even though it lives inside the man.
But Gasson, of the University of Reading's School of Systems Engineering, suggests this argument is immaterial because he is demonstrating that increasingly sophisticated medical implants will become vulnerable to computer viruses. Which means that those implants that are vital to a human'… Read more
Smaller, faster gadgets may be cool, but keeping them from getting too hot poses challenges.
Consumer electronics, of course, contain many sources of heat, including interconnecting wiring and millions of transistors. In the past, bigger and bigger fans have been employed to keep chips from overheating, thus expanding a gadget's lifespan. But as electronics continue to shrink, so does the space where fans can be placed.
Enter graphene, a sheet of densely arranged carbon that's just a single atom thick and boasts strong heat-conducting properties. Researchers at UC Riverside's Nano-Device Laboratory have discovered a way to layer … Read more
ARM is running one of its Web sites on a cluster of ARM-based chips, part of a handful of experiments to test out the viability of using its chip architecture in servers.
The Cambridge, England-based company does not market designs for server processors, concentrating its efforts instead on chips for the mobile phone market--where it dominates--and on early forays into smartbooks and tablets. However, ARM is working on low-powered server chips in response to customer demand, marketing chief Ian Drew told ZDNet UK.
"We've been doing some testing over the past year or so," Drew said on … Read more
Smartbooks have failed to materialize due to delays in Flash optimization, a lower-than-expected uptake of Linux on Netbooks, and the sudden emergence of tablets, ARM's marketing chief has said.
ARM dominates the mobile phone chip design market and has since 2008 been trying to get into the subnotebook market as well. The plan was to do so through Linux-based, ARM-powered "smartbooks" that would provide an instant-on, longer-life alternative to x86-based Netbooks but, according to ARM's marketing vice president, Ian Drew, events have conspired to stall this plan.
"We thought [smartbooks] would be launched by now, … Read more
Global shipments of microprocessors for the first quarter of the year grew by 39 percent over the same quarter in 2009, paving the way for a market recovery, according to findings from IDC released Thursday.
Though first-quarter shipments actually declined 5.6 percent from the previous quarter, a drop from the fourth to the first quarter is typical of seasonal trends in this industry, said IDC. And the 5.6 percent fall was smaller than usual.
"PC processor shipments typically decline around 7 to 8 percent going from fourth quarter to first quarter," Shane Rau, director of Semiconductors … Read more
A month after the rumors first started flying, Apple finally confirmed that it has indeed purchased Intrinsity, a Texas-based chipmaker.
It's the second chipmaker purchased by Apple in two years starting with P.A. Semi, which it bought for $278 million. It's also the fourth acquisition Apple has made since last fall; it bought map API maker PlaceBase in October, social music site LaLa … Read more
As recently as February, Sony was still losing around $18 per every PlayStation 3 sold. A whole three and a half years after the console's November 2006 launch, it appears a new component will finally allow for a profit to be made on each system.
Thank a cheaper, cooler, 40-nanometer RSX graphics chip for the reduced production cost. Even better, the chip will require less overall power to run (about 15 percent), which is ultimately good for your wallet. These consoles with updated chipsets will be available in stores as they are manufactured.
Microsoft has gone through a similar … Read more