TechSummit Rewind 134

This is the TechSummit Rewind, a daily recap of the top technology headlines.

Apple gets double Samsung’s device activations during holiday season

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Nearly half of all mobile device and app applications across the United States during the week leading up to Christmas and the beginning of Chanukah were for the iPhone, according to the Flurry analyst firm.

During the week, 44 percent of all new phone and tablet activations involved Apple devices, while 21 percent were across Samsung devices. Huawei came in third with three percent of activations, while LG, Amazon, Oppo, Xiaomi, and Motorola each got two percent of device activations.

As for device sizes, 45 percent of all smartphones and tablets activated were medium-sized, down from 54 percent last year. Phablets grew from 27 percent last year to 37 percent this year, while small tablets fell by one percent to eight percentage points. Full-size tablets and small phones were stable at nine percent and one percent respectively.

South Korea fines Qualcomm $854M for violating competition laws

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The Korea Fair Trade Commission (KFTC), South Korea’s antitrust regulator, has fined Qualcomm $854 million for unfair business practices in patent licensing and modem chip sales. The chip maker will challenge the decision in court.

According to the antitrust regulator, Qualcomm abused its dominant market position and forced handset makers to pay royalties for an unnecessarily broad set of patents as part of its modem chips sales.

Qualcomm also restricted competition by refusing or limiting licensing of its standard essential modem chip patents to rivals like Intel, MediaTek, and Samsung, according to the KFTC, hindering their sales and leaving their products vulnerable to lawsuits.

The regulator ordered Qualcomm to negotiate in good faith with rivals on patent licensing and renegotiate chip supply agreements with handset makers if requested.

“We investigated and decided on these actions because Qualcomm’s actions limit overall competition.”

-Shin Young-son, Korea Fair Trade Commission secretary general

Qualcomm will file for an immediate stay of the corrective order and appeal the decision to the Seoul High Court. The fine amount and the method used to calculate it will also be challenged.

Lenovo launches new ThinkPad laptops with Windows Precision trackpads

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Lenovo will be updating its line of ThinkPad laptops in 2017 with newer processors, more authentication features, and improved trackpads.

Several new laptops, including the ThinkPad X270, the ThinkPad Yoga 370, four new ThinkPad T Ultrabooks, and the ThinkPad 13, will include support for Microsoft’s Windows Precision Touchpad that launched with Windows 10.

The new ThinkPads will run on Intel’s Kaby Lake architecture, the chipmaker’s latest, and some will get authentication features like Windows Hello support. That’s mainly coming to support European customers that face stronger security requirements, according to Lenovo.

Here’s the full lineup:

  • ThinkPad X270: 12-inch display with optional touch, starting at $999, available in March
  • ThinkPad Yoga 370: Full HD 13.3-inch display, $1264, shipping in March, comes in black/white
  • ThinkPad T Ultrabook: Variety of configurations starting at $909
  • ThinkPad L: 14/15-inch display, $779/$909
  • ThinkPad 13: Aimed at small business owners/students, $674

There is also an array of new docks that support Thunderbolt 3 and USB Type-C. Some of the laptops also come in white (including the Yoga 370), a first for the ThinkPad lineup.

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