As the world is moving towards the post-COVID-19 era, businesses all over the world are also trying to adjust themselves. We’ve been hearing news about several enterprises shutting down, companies doing layoffs, and much more. Now, the report is coming from Silicon Valley Oakland that Apple and Intel have decided to break up their long-term partnership after 15 years. Also, Google has decided to shut down its AI-guided photo printing service from 30 June 2020.
Apple ending partnership with Intel
Apple made this move to take more control over the manufacturing of its products. For your information, Apple outsources various parts of their devices from multiple companies, such as – AVGO, Texas Instruments, JBL, Qualcomm, Samsung, Micron, ON, and Intel.
According to sources, the company has been working for years to replace the Intel microprocessors they use in Mac computers. Apple made this announcement on Monday in their conference with developers, after they made sure that the new chips will arrive till next year.
The move signifies the growing power of one of the biggest tech companies and their capabilities to expand and reduce dependency on partner companies. As the new competitors are coming into the market and global economy struggling due to coronavirus pandemic, Apple made a bold move in its business operations. Apple and Intel have not any comments on this report.
It is not the first time that a company decides to expand their footprints. Recently, Facebook invested billion dollars into – Indonesia’s fastest-growing apps, a telecom giant in India (Reliance Jio), and an undersea fiber-optic cable in Africa. Amazon also built its fleet of delivery trucks and cargo planes. And Apple and Google purchased upstarts to expand their business.
Another partner of Apple, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing, is planning to develop the Mac Chips in factories in Asia (similar to how Apple uses Foxconn to assemble iPhones). Since 2005, Apple has been using the same Intel chips in its Mac that other PCs use. Now, with its new processors, Apple would get more control over Mac functionalities. The company is making chips for iPods and iPhones from the start, relying on Arm to customize the designs. ARM is a semiconductor firm handled by the Japanese Conglomerate SoftBank. And now, the Mac chips will also rely on ARM technology to improve compatibility with its mobile devices.
Google and Amazon already design their own chips, both for potential cost reasons and to improve performance. Tasks like AI and 3D image rendering can be easily handled with special-purpose circuitry. They don’t require general-purpose microprocessors manufactured by Intel.
Apple Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said that the new Mac might come in the next 12 to 18 months that will feature an in-house processor after replacing the Intel processor. It would be a huge blow to Intel, especially when military and civilian are concerned over the U.S. leadership weakened state in chip manufacturing. According to Evercore Analyst C.J. Muse, Intel sells 3.5 billion dollar worth of chips to Apple each year, which is sell than 5% of their annual sales.
The margin is less, but it would have serious long-term effects on Intel’s sales-rate. Intel Corp is known for its record of delivering powerful computing engines, particularly for computer servers and laptops. But they are still lagging in sellings chips for tech products like tablets and smartphones. The chief executive of IBS (International Business Strategies) Handel Jone said, “Intel has fallen behind 12 to 18 months in the chip manufacturing industry.”
Apple was troubled due to Intel’s production stumble, and when Intel ran into demand struggle for other chips type, it caused production shortage for PC makers last year. These incidents tarnished Intel’s image as a reliable producer, which could be one of the reasons for Apple ending its long-term partnership with the company.
Google Shutting-down Artificial Intelligence Guided Photo Printing Services
Artificial Intelligence is changing the world by making its way into other technologies. Recently, various firms are working on Artificial Emotional Intelligence to allow machines to understand human behavior much better. But recently, Google announced that they are shutting-down the AI-enabled Photo Printing service from 30 June 2020.
The service was available for U.S. users at a monthly fee of $7.99. It hasn’t been even five months since its launch, and now, Google decides to shut it down. The service might return in the future with new features and avatar. The automated photo printing service allowed the Google algorithms to select the best photos from Google Photo Library added in the last 30 days.
In a note addressed to subscribers, Google mentioned, “Thank you for your invaluable feedback these last several months. You have provided us with a lot of helpful information about how we can evolve this feature, which we hope to make more widely available. Please keep your eyes open for future updates.”
Artificial Intelligence did most of the work. Google also enabled users to customize the feature with options – “landscapes” and “people and pets” as per your likings. Users could personalize the photos before printing. These pictures could be used as gifts, or as memories in the form of digital copies.
However, Google failed to analyze the timing. The service doesn’t fit with this version of the world. Launched in February 2020, most people thought it would be a waste to spend money on a photo service when you can’t travel or socialize. The photo print service was made to enable users to embrace digital wellbeing. Although, Google has many experimental services that it might launch in the future depending on how the world will move in the post-COVID-19 era.