Tech Giants Come Together to Form Cyber Security Research Alliance

In the wake of the ongoing cyber-warfare, tech giants have come together to form a consortium that will focus on cyber-security. The consortium is called Cyber Security Research Alliance (CSRA) and it counts AMD, Intel, RSA, Lockheed Martin and Honeywell as its members. Problems in cyber-security are getting complex every day, and this private alliance will create a rich knowledge pool to address the security issues of the present and the future.


The primary aim of the CSRA is to bridge the gap between Government-funded R&D efforts and commercial cyber-security solutions. It will bring together expertise from member companies and the R&D efforts of the Government. Chuck Romine, Director of NIST’s Information Technology Laboratory, says,

Putting into practice the exciting cyber security innovations that emerge from research requires active partnerships between government and industry and also among private sector stakeholders. The emergence of CSRA can strengthen both kinds of partnerships and we look forward to working with this new organization to promote a trustworthy cyberspace for our nation and its citizens.

Most of the mega-attacks that we have seen over the last few days have been on control systems (think Flame and Stuxnet). It is good to see that cyber-security efforts for protection of control systems have stepped up, after Stuxnet. Visit the CSRA homepage to know more.

Also, read how Kaspersky is creating a high-availability operating system for control systems that primarily addresses security.

Intel Reports Q3 2012 Earnings; Revenues Flat at $13.5 Billion

It’s the earnings season again, and Intel was one of the technology giants to report its third quarter earnings. Its revenue in Q3 2012 was $13.5 billion, almost flat compared to the last sequential quarter. Its net income, however, was $3 billion, up 5.1% sequentially. It reported an operating income of nearly $3.8 billion, an generated $5.1 billion in cash from operations.

Paul Otellini, Intel president and CEO, said:

“Our third-quarter results reflected a continuing tough economic environment. The world of computing is in the midst of a period of breakthrough innovation and creativity. As we look to the fourth quarter, we’re pleased with the continued progress in Ultrabooks and phones and excited about the range of Intel-based tablets coming to market.”

The PC Client group which is primarily the consumer PC division generated $8.6 billion in revenue, while the Data Center Group which is the server chip business generated $2.7 billion in revenue.

Intel also projected Q4 2012 revenue at $13.6 billion, slightly higher than current revenue. Intel is trying hard to get a strong foothold in the mobile processor market, which is dominated by ARM. Intel’s future also depends on the success of Microsoft’s Windows 8 on tablets to some extent. The next couple of years might be decisive for Intel.

via Intel – SEC

Intel And Lava Start Rolling Out XOLO X900’s Ice Cream Sandwich Update

Earlier this year, Intel teamed up with a relatively small and unknown Indian manufacturer – Lava – to release the first Android smartphone powered by an Intel processor, the XOLO X900. The handset was initially released with stock Android 2,3 Gingerbread on-board, but Intel promised that it would soon roll out the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update for the handset.

Now, after quite a few months of releasing the handset, Intel and Lava have finally rolled out the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update for the phone. The Ice Cream Sandwich update for the XOLO X900 will bring with it major UI improvements, Holo theme UI, Magazine like swipe UI, a new and improved web browser, Android Beam, and much more.

Lava XOLO X900 owners can download the update either from the company’s website or directly install the update on their handset via OTA. Thankfully, Intel and Lava have kept the Ice Cream Sandwich experience near stock with just a few minor tweaks.

Hopefully, Intel and Lava are also working on bringing Android 4.1.1 Jelly Bean to the handset, which would make the handset much more tempting.

Via – GSMArena

Motorola Announces The 2GHz Intel Inside RAZR i

A couple of weeks ago, Motorola announced the Verizon bound DROID RAZR HD and the DROID RAZR M. While the RAZR HD is a high-end flagship from Moto, the RAZR M is an impressive mid-range handset with almost no bezel. Today, at an event in London, Motorola has announced the international variant of the RAZR M, the RAZR i. Like the RAZR M, the RAZR i sports a 4.3-inch qHD resolution AMOLED display with almost edge-to-edge display. The slim body of the handset houses a 2000mAh battery, a Kevlar back, an 8MP camera, a 1.3MP front-facing camera, a dedicated camera button, NFC, 8GB internal memory, a microSD card slot and the other usual bunch of features.

The most interesting part of the RAZR i is its SoC. The handset sports a single-core 2GHz Intel Medfield processor with Hyper-Threading. Intel promises excellent Javascript performance along with more than enough battery life for its chip. The 32nm SoC also houses a powerful ISP that allows the RAZR i to take 10 shots in just under a second. The Motorola RAZR i will be running on Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich when it launches in Europe and the U.K next month.

ZTE Unveils The Intel Powered Grand X IN Smartphone

Yesterday, Sony and Samsung announced some of the amazing smartphones and tablets at the ongoing IFA 2012 event in Berlin. In other news, Motorola is expected to announce the Intel based Motorola Edge smartphone during mid-September. Now, ZTE went ahead and unveiled their first smartphone powered by the Intel Atom processor Z2460, the ZTE Grand X IN. This ZTE flagship handset is the latest product from the ZTE Grand series.

The specs of this handset is almost similar to the ZTE Grand X. It runs on the Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) Operating System. ZTE hasn’t revealed any plans to update this device to the latest Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) OS.

Mr. Ao Wen, Vice President of Europe Operations for ZTE Handsets, said:
“The Grand X IN is ZTE’s first flagship smartphone in Europe to feature Intel Inside and we look forward to building our partnership with Intel. The handsets in the ZTE Grand portfolio are quality devices focused on providing a great level of service and, with the inclusion of Intel’s technology in the Grand X IN, we have provided a handset with enhanced capabilities, reliability and performance.”

ZTE Grand X IN features a 4.3 inch qHD display, sporting a resolution of 960 x 540 pixels, 1.6 GHz Intel Atom processor Z2460, Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) Operating System, 8 megapixel rear camera with auto-focus and flash, full HD (1080p) video recording and playback, 0.3 megapixel front-facing camera for video calls and more.

Other features include a 3.5 mm headset jack, Dolby Sound, FM Radio, GPS, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, WiFi Direct, Bluetooth 2.1 + A2DP, 1 GB RAM, 16 GB internal memory, MicroSD card slot, 32 GB expandable memory, Google Play Store, DLNA, NFC (Near Field Communication) and a 1650 mAh Li-Ion battery.

ZTE Grand X IN measures 127 x 65 x 9.9 mm and weighs 140.8 grams. This handset will be launched next month in the Europe. ZTE has not yet announced the availability of this device in other markets. The price of ZTE Grand X IN will be revealed during the launch.

Intel vs. ARM: From the World of Servers

It is a well-known fact that Intel dominates the world of personal computers and ARM owns the world of mobiles. Moreover, while Intel has taken its first baby steps towards making mobile processors, ARM has also made a slow entry to the personal computing world. Nevertheless, there is another market where this Intel vs. ARM war can go, and it is the market for servers.

Recently, ARM started showing its head in the server market and as it turns out, there are some impressive reasons for using ARM over Intel for servers. Look at this presentation for some interesting facts on ARM servers. In a few months, Dell and HP are going to enter the ARM server market with all guns blazing. While Dell showcased an ARM based server product back in May, HP has the advantage of being the early adopter. Things have started moving in this competition, and to spice things up, our beloved Ubuntu is ready for this ARM revolution, from version 11.10.


However, the biggest piece of news came yesterday when Intel hit back HP’s ARM server partner Calxeda over a benchmark. According to a benchmark carried out by Calxeda, ARM’s Cortex A9 based ECX-1000 servers could outdo Intel’s Xeon processors in performance, and Intel was not ready to accept this. Therefore, it went ahead, performed its own benchmarks, and came back with another set of results in its own favor. Apparently, both Intel and Calxeda used Apache HTTP benchmarking, but Calxeda used Intel’s Sandy bridge Xeon E3-1240 processors to carry out the tests instead of the latest Ivy Bridge. Additionally, Calxeda limited the Xeon for I/O for the benchmark, and effectively, the CPU was running only at 14% of its total capacity.

Intel and ARM are fighting on multiple fronts, and this is just another battle in the ongoing war. While Intel has the advantage of high performance, ARM has the advantage of power efficiency. They are both masters of their fields, and this war will only leave us spoilt for choice.

Intel Reports Q2 2012 Earnings; Revenue of $13.5 Billion

Intel reported its earnings for the second quarter of 2012 today, with revenue of $13.5 billion and operating profit of $3.8 billion. It generated nearly $4.7 billion in operating cash flow, and distributed nearly $2.2 billion back to shareholders by way of dividends and share buybacks.

Paul Otellini, Intel president and CEO, said:

“The second quarter was highlighted by solid execution with continued strength in the data center and multiple product introductions in Ultrabooks and smartphones. As we enter the third quarter, our growth will be slower than we anticipated due to a more challenging macroeconomic environment. With a rich mix of Ultrabook and Intel-based tablet and phone introductions in the second half, combined with the long-term investments we’re making in our product and manufacturing areas, we are well positioned for this year and beyond.”

While Intel continues to dominate the desktop and notebook processor scene, it faces increasing competition from ARM powered competitors in the mobile processor segment. Last quarter, it saw impressive revenue growth only in the Data Center Group, while the PC Client Group revenue was up only marginally.

It has projected revenue of nearly $14.3 billion in Q3 2012, with most of the growth expected to be driven by the sales of Ultrabooks powered by Windows 8, and Intel based phones and tablets.

Intel is backing tablet makers who are working on Intel powered Windows 8 tablets. Otellini said that more than 20 Windows 8 tablets will be launched later this year, following the launch of Windows 8.

Though both Intel and Microsoft have been trying to reduce their dependence on each other, their futures are still pretty much intertwined. Intel’s earnings in the coming year will be largely driven by the success or failure of Windows 8 in the marketplace.

via Intel

Intel Wants To Get Into TV Business

Companies getting into TV business is the new swag thing in the market just like anyone and everyone wanted to manufacture a mobile device two years ago.

Now according to the recent report by Reuters, Intel is planning to get into TV business. But it’s becoming a challenge to the chip maker as major media content providers are unwilling to let Intel unbundle and license specific networks and shows at a discount to what cable and satellite partners pay. What’s interesting is the company is emphasizing a set-top box employing Intel technology that can distinguish who is watching, potentially allowing Intel to target advertising.

Recently, Google has tried to test its hands on $100 billion US cable television eco system. It is being said that Apple is also about to disrupt the TV ecosystem and will be releasing TV SDK at WWDC next week, reports Forbes. If that happens, it will enable Apple TV box to run third party apps which can be accessed through Apple’s app store.

The only question remains can Intel make a breakthough in the TV business where giants like Apple and Google are still struggling? Agreed, Intel is a conglomorate in itself, yet its previous attempts to contribute to consumer electronics (Meego) has failed.

With everyone trying its hands at TV business will definitely bring some much needed change in the category. We just hope that few of those hands won’t get burned like they did when everyone went frenzy over mobile devices.

Intel CEO Knocks Windows RT’s Legacy Limitations

While the general sentiment amongst most sane people is that the legacy desktop doesn’t belong in Windows RT, there is one man who unsurprisingly holds a different view. Intel CEO Paul Otellini thinks that the limitation of the legacy desktop — where non-sanctioned third-party apps are not allowed to run — is actually a vulnerability of the ARM platform:

“With one button you can get to legacy mode…this is critically important for CIOs who want to preserve all of their investments in software,” he said, referring to “tens of millions” of programs built around Intel’s x86 design.

“We have the advantage of the incumbency, advantage of the legacy support. Not just in terms of applications but devices.”

As you can see, he feels that the support of legacy applications that Intel-based x86 tablets can offer users far outweigh the limitations of ARM. I largely disagree. Obviously, tablet users don’t want the Classic Windows UI or applications; they want something that’s far more suited for touch. However, a part of me does think that Intel has a sales advantage.

Microsoft’s choice to retain the classic legacy desktop in ARM to begin with was a completely idiotic decision, and I’m going to only focus on one reason — reason #5219874, to be exact — as to why that is. Average consumers will be so confused when they find that they can’t download normal software on their ARM tablet. It looks just like their desktop OS, but why doesn’t it work? So, perhaps this problem could be avoided through educated and informative salespeople, right? Well, if they tell consumers that something “doesn’t work”, while it will on another tablet, it may sway some people towards purchasing an x86 tablet, even if it’s more expensive.

They’ll justify the cost just because they want everything to work. And the people who buy an ARM tablet uninformed will be rather pissed at Microsoft when they cannot download MSN games like Belle’s Beauty Boutique to their device.

Intel Ivy Bridge Processors Finally Released; First Microprocessors To Use Tri-gate Transistors

Ever since Intel got out of its disastrous Pentium 4 era, the company has been following a “tick-tock” schedule. The ‘tick’ represents a shrink in the processor’s fabrication processor, while the ‘tock’ represents a new microprocessor architecture. This means that we should expect a new ‘tick’ or ‘tock’ from Intel every year. Last year, the company introduced a new microarchitecture, Sandybridge, with its core Core ix series of processors. Today, the company has released a ‘tick’ version of Core ix series of processors, codenamed Ivy Bridge.

The Ivy Bridge series of processors were delayed quite a few times this year, and was scheduled to be announced on April 29th. However, after numerous delays, Intel thought it would be better to release the processors a few days early, at least on paper. The Ivy Bridge processors are based on the 22nm manufacturing processor, and will utilize the company’s 3D tri-gate transistors technology to improve its power-efficiency.

With today’s launch, Intel has released a whopping 13 quad-core variants of the Core i5 and i7 based on Ivy Bridge aimed for desktops. Other variants including the ones meant for ultra books will be released sometime in summer this year.