Hardware

Technology • Smartphones, Hardware & Gadgets
Mediatek is now world's largest smartphone chipmaker
Mediatek is now world's largest smartphone chipmaker
Credit: unsplash.com / Mathew Schwartz

The Taiwanese chipmaker Mediatek has overtaken Qualcomm at the top in the third quarter of 2020 to become the world's largest smartphone chipmaker, according to findings from Counterpoint.

As the market researchers from Counterpoint report, the US chip developer Qualcomm is now only number 2 when it comes to the quantities sold of SoCs (system-on-a-chip) for smartphones. After that, Mediatek from Taiwan, with a market share of 31 per cent, beat Qualcomm with 29 per cent in the past third quarter of the year.

Climate & Environment
France introduces Repair Index
France introduces Repair Index
Credit: unsplash.com / Nikolai Chernichenko

As of January 2021, electronic devices will be marked with a repair index at the time of purchase and thus classified. The index is intended to inform buyers about the repair possibilities of the purchased item and is measured on a scale of 1 to 10 based on parameters such as ease of disassembly, as well as price and availability of spare parts.

Technology • Smartphones, Hardware & Gadgets
First iPad Pro with mini LED display likely coming in Q1 2021
iPad
iPad Credit: Apple (Reproduction)

Korea's ETNews reports that LG will supply Apple with Mini-LED displays for new iPad models set to launch in the first quarter of 2021.

Mini-LED backlighting provides many of the same benefits as OLED displays, including higher brightness, improved contrast ratio, and increased power efficiency.

Some reports had suggested this transition could occur in Q4 of 2020, but it now seems clear that the change has been delayed until early 2021 — perhaps due to the COVID-19 pandemic and associated supply chain disruptions.

Technology • Smartphones, Hardware & Gadgets
Raspberry Pi 400 packs a full computer into a keyboard for $70
Raspberry Pi 400
Raspberry Pi 400 Credit: Raspberry Pi Foundation

The Raspberry Pi Foundation has announced the Raspberry Pi 400, a compact keyboard with an ARM-based computer built-in. The new device specs include a quad-core 1.8GHz Broadcom processor, 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM, gigabit Ethernet, two USB 3.0 ports and a USB 2.0 port (both USB-A) as well as two micro-HDMI ports for connecting a display (with support for outputting in 4K).

The Raspberry Pi 400 is available starting today as a standalone machine for $70 or in a bundle including a mouse, power supply, microSD card, HDMI cable, and beginner’s guide for $100.

Technology • Smartphones, Hardware & Gadgets
Many Android devices at risk after discovery of flaws in Snapdragon chip

More than a billion Android devices are at risk of data theft and of becoming spying tools because of more than 400 flaws discovered this week in Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chip.

If an user downloads content that’s rendered by the chip an attacker can exploit those vulnerabilities to install malicious apps without any permission and use them to monitor locations and listen to nearby audio in real time, withdraw photos and videos and even render the phone completely unresponsive.

Technology • Smartphones, Hardware & Gadgets
Mac computers to use Apple-designed processors, and run iOS apps
Macbook with new ARM based processor
Macbook with new ARM based processor Credit: Apple (Reproduction)

During the WWDC today, Apple announced the switch from Intel to custom ARM-based processors for its Mac computers. The move means Macs will run on the same family of chips as the iPhones and iPads and will be able to run iOS applications natively.

"We expect to ship our first Mac with Apple silicon by the end of the year," said chief executive Tim Cook.