TechSummit Rewind 146

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

FTC: Qualcomm forced Apple into exclusive chip deal

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According to a lawsuit filed Tuesday by the Federal Trade Commission, Qualcomm forced Apple to use its chips exclusively in exchange for lower licensing fees, excluding competitors and harming competition.

The suit accuses Qualcomm of maintaining a monopoly over mobile processors through a “no license, no chips” policy, which imposed “onerous” supply and patent-licensing terms to extract high royalties from smartphone manufacturers and weaken competitors.

“Qualcomm recognized that any competitor that won Apple’s business would become stronger, and used exclusivity to prevent Apple from working with and improving the effectiveness of Qualcomm’s competitors.”

-Federal Trade Commission, in a statement

According to the commission, Qualcomm’s patents are standard-essential patents – technology that’s essential to the industry and must be licensed to competitors under fair, reasonable, and nondiscriminatory terms. However, the complaint alleges that Qualcomm consistently refused to license some standard-essential patents to rival chipmakers.

“Qualcomm’s customers have accepted elevated royalties and other license terms that do not reflect an assessment of terms that a court or other neutral arbiter would determine to be fair and reasonable.”

-Federal Trade Commission

Qualcomm claims that the lawsuit is based on “flawed legal theory.”

“Qualcomm has never withheld or threatened to withhold chip supply in order to obtain agreement to unfair or unreasonable licensing terms. The FTC’s allegation to the contrary – the central thesis of the complaint – is wrong.”

-Qualcomm, in a statement

Zuckerburg takes stand in defense of Oculus

mark-zuckerburg

According to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerburg, his company spent up to $3 billion to buy VR startup Oculus. This came out in testimony Tuesday in a lawsuit with ZeniMax Media, which accuses Oculus and Facebook of “misappropriating” trade secrets and copyright infringement. ZeniMax is the parent company of Id Software, developer of game franchises like Wolfenstein, Doom, and Quake.

According to Zuckerburg, ZeniMax’s claims are wrong and follow a pattern of companies attempting to profit after a major deal like the Oculus one.

Zuckerburg also claimed that he hadn’t heard of ZeniMax before the lawsuit against Facebook, and his company’s legal team didn’t spend much time with him discussing the lawsuit because they didn’t think it was credible.

Google mobile app saves searches if your connection drops

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A new update to the Google mobile app for Android will save your search when your connection drops.

“With this change, search results are saved as soon as they are retrieved, even if you lose connection afterwards or go into airplane mode.”

-Google, on its Keyword blog

According to the company, power drain and data won’t be issues.

Google+ revives Events feature

New Google+

Events will return to Google+ on Jan. 24. This means that you won’t be able to create and join events on the web, but it won’t be a part of G Suite right now.

“Low-quality” comments will also be hidden by default. You will still be able to see if them if you want, but Google claims that this move will let you focus on the ones that “matter most.” The app has also been tweaked to use screen size more efficiency. This means that you shouldn’t notice less white space and more posts. There’s also a new zoom tool for Google+ on the web that’ll let you take a closer look at the finer details of an image.

Lastly, if you’re using the old Google+ on the web, you won’t be able to do so after Jan. 24th. The company promised that it’s still working on a new version.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise buys SimpliVity for $650M

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Hewlett Packard Enterprise, which split from HP in 2015, has acquired SimpliVity, a company that sells data center hardware that unites computing power and storage for $650M in cash. The deal is expected to close in the second quarter of HPE’s 2017 fiscal year that ends on June 30.

“More and more customers are looking for solutions that bring them secure, highly resilient, on-premises infrastructure at cloud economics. That’s exactly where we’re focused.”

-Meg Whitman, Hewlett Packard Enterprise CEO

The company will continue selling its converged infrastructure products, according to a statement, and will offer “integrated” HPE SimpliVity systems atop HP3 ProLiant servers.

Microsoft acquires Simplygon

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Microsoft is acquiring Swedish 3D data-optimization vendor Simplygon.

The announcement, made by corporate vice president of Next Gen Experiences Kudo Tsunoda, is part of Microsoft’s “3D for Everyone” strategy that is a key part in the Windows 10 Creators Update.

According to Tsunoda, Simplygon will help Microsoft simplify the process of capturing, creating, and sharing information in 3D. The Simplygon technology will complement the new Paint 3D application and new online creator community.

“Throughout our journey, we’ve been laser focused on helping developers push the boundaries of 3D. From our early days delivering advanced level-of-detail solutions, to the adoption of Simplygon SDK by most leading AAA game development studios, and our more recent expansion into enterprise AR/VR, Simplygon has made automatic 3D data-optimization increasingly more accessible to developers. Our next challenge is 3D For Everyone, the ultimate accessibility!”

-Simplygon’s managers, on the company’s website

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