Editor’s Note: This is the TechSummit Rewind, a daily recap of the top technology headlines.
HP bets on gaming with new Omen laptops, desktop
HP is bringing the Omen name, first used with the HP Omen two years ago, to all of its gaming hardware — including laptops, desktops, and a 32-inch quad-HD monitor.
The laptops are going to start at $899 for the 15.6-inch model ($980 for the 17.3-incher), with its Omen desktop being VR-ready to drive the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift. The cheaper laptops have plastic cases with a “black shadow mesh” design, along with only red lights on the keyboard. They can now support up to NVIDIA GTX 965M graphics and sixth-gen Intel Core i7 processors, 16GB of RAM, either a 512GB SSD or 2TB hard drive (along with some hybrid options), and is configurable with an Intel RealSense camera.
The Omen desktop looks like a traditional mid-tower desktop, with a metal façade and red lighting on the front. At the bleeding edge, you can get a Intel Core i7-6700K processor, 32GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD, and a 3TB traditional hard drive. You can also get either a NVIDIA GTX 1080 Founder Edition GPU, or AMD Radeon R9 390X. Water-cooling is also optional, which could help out a overclockable CPU.
The 32-inch quad-HD Omen monitor supports AMD’s Freesync technology, which helps smooth out performance due to framerate variability. No pricing information was announced.
The Omen laptops will be available on July 10 at Best Buy and HP’s website, while the desktop and monitor will ship in August.
Foxconn replaces 60K human workers with robots
According to reports, Foxconn has replaced around 60,000 human factory workers with machines.
The New Taipei, Taiwan-based company has confirmed to the BBC that it’s working to automate much of its manufacturing operations, but denied that it would mean fewer jobs for humans. Instead, Foxconn is using the robots to “replace repetitive tasks previously done by employees” while allowing these employees to focus on more valuable parts of manufacturing, like R&D and quality control.
“We will continue to harness automation and manpower in our manufacturing operations, and we expect to maintain our siginicant workforce in China.”
-Foxconn, to the BBC
PayPal shutting down Windows Phone, BlackBerry, Amazon apps
PayPal will drop its apps for Windows Phone, BlackBerry, and Amazon’s Fire OS on June 30.
“It was a difficult decision to no longer support the PayPal app on these mobile platforms, but we believe it’s the right thing to ensure we are investing our resources in creating the very best experiences for our customers.”
-Joanna Lambert, PayPal consumer product VP
Affected users can still use PayPal’s mobile website for account management and money transactions. BlackBerry users can send peer-to-peer payments wiht PayPal through BBM, while Windows users can use the PayPal add-in on Outlook.com to send payments through the email app.
Uber taps Foursquare’s Places data
Foursquare and Uber have announced a partnership that would use Foursquare’s location data to let users type in a venue name when setting their destination.
As part of the deal, Foursquare will be the only new POI supplier for Uber for an unspecified period. Foursquare employees will also exclusively use Uber for business transportation.
According to the Foursquare blog, Foursquare will allow Uber to customize, improve, and increase the breadth of their POI location data to increase the Uber experience for riders and drivers. These modifications will also be incorporated into Foursquare’s database over time.
HTC pulls plug on Nexus 9 production
HTC has stopped production of Google’s Nexus 9 tablet, according to the company.
According to HTC, the company has completed its manufacturing run of the tablet.
Eero raises $50M, heads to Best Buy
Eero, the maker of home WiFi devices that use multiple access points to improve coverage has raised $50 million in new funding.
The San Francisco-based company has also unveiled a non-exclusive retail agreement with Best Buy, where the company’s devices will be available on Best Buy’s website next week and in store sometime this summer.
Eero plans to use some of the new funding to expand its manufacturing capacity
“We need to make sure we’re keeping up with demand. Our weeks of inventory on hand are much lower than we’d like and, once we’re in Best Buy, it’s not like putting a product online where you can just be out of stock for a day or two… We need to be able to perform.”
-Mike Weaver; Eero co-founder, CEO
Menlo Ventures led the new funding round, with partner Mark Siegel joining Eero’s board of directors. Index Ventures also participated, along with existing shareholders First Round Capital, Shasta Ventures, Redpoint Ventures, and Playground Global.
HP earnings mixed; dominated with falling PC, printing revenues
HP reported that its second-quarter adjusted earnings were $0.41/share on net revenues of $11.59 billion. According to the Palo Alto, Calif.-based company, that’s roughly an 11 percent decrease in revenue and a five percent increase in earnings per share year-over-year.
“This quarter, we delivered strong results and solid progress towards our long term strategy. We achieved our operational objectives, unleashed truly amazing innovations, and grew in strategic areas of our business, despite tough market conditions. I’m confident in our ability to execute and remain committed to our plan for growth.”
-Dion Weisier; HP president, CEO, in a news release
HP’s personal systems’ net revenue fell about 10 percent year-over-year to $6.99 billion, while its printing business saw $4.64 billion in net revenue.
“I will not be completely satisfied with the company performance until we return to sustained growth.”