This week, we learned that Apple will be holding a digital-only “Time Flies” event on Tuesday, September 15, where it is expected new editions of the Watch and iPad. Apple isn’t expected to showcase the iPhone 12 series at the event. The surprise announcement of Microsoft’s Xbox Series S, a cheaper all-digital version of the flagship Xbox Series X, also hogged limelight this week.
And we learned that Nvidia is in advanced talks to acquire ARM Holdings, the world’s leading chipset designer company, for $40 billion. The deal is expected to close next week. Meanwhile, Sony is holding a special PS5 event on Wednesday, September 16. The Japanese giant hasn’t shared any information on price or release date, but it seems likely we will hear more on this at the 40 minutes long event.
Those are just a few of the big stories we’re focusing in our this week’s Tech news roundup.
Apple’s ‘Time Flies’ event on Sep 15
Apple’s biggest tech event of the year is on Tuesday, September 15, when the company will showcase new products for the first time. But don’t expect Apple to announce the new iPhone 12 at the virtual event. Instead, Apple will probably use the event to announce new editions of the Apple Watch and iPad. For the new iPhone 12 lineup, we have to wait until October for Apple to announce them Apple confirmed back in July that the iPhone 12 will be delayed by ‘a few weeks’ from typical September launch. Apple’s September 15 event can be watched online at Apple.com, YouTube, beginning at 10:30 pm IST.
Microsoft confirms $299 Xbox Series S
Earlier this week, Microsoft confirmed the existence of the Xbox Series S, a tiny next-generation console that will join the flagship Xbox Series X. The Xbox Series S is around 60 per cent smaller than the Xbox Series X and won’t come with a disc drive. The Series S includes the same 3.6GHz AMD Ryzen CPU as the Series X, along with a 512GB SSD and an RDNA 2-based AMD GPU that still supports real-time ray tracing and variable rate shading. The “smallest Xbox” targets 1080p or 1440p gaming at 60 frames per second, with support for up to 120fps. The Xbox Series S costs $299/Rs 36,990, and will debut on November 10 in India. The flagship Xbox Series X, on the other hand, will cost $499 or Rs 49,990. It will also launch on the same day as the Series S.
Nvidia close to buying ARM
Nvidia, the world’s largest graphics chipmaker, is close to completing a deal to buy ARM, in what would be the largest-ever semiconductor deal. The Japanese conglomerate, Softbank, would get $40 billion if Nvidia agrees to buy ARM, a semiconductor company that licenses its technologies to several major companies like Apple, which uses ARM architecture to build processors for iPhones and iPad. Softbank bought the British chip designer firm $32 billion in 2016. The ARM deal will be facing intense government scrutiny as Nvidia would suddenly become a threat to Intel, Qualcomm and Advanced Micro Devices (AMD).
Sony PS5 showcase event set for Sep 16
The big PlayStation 5 will take place on Wednesday, September 16. The event will be used by Sony to announce new first and third-party games coming to the PS5 at launch. Although not confirmed, Sony will likely reveal release date and price for the PlayStation 5 during the same event. The PS5 will reportedly cost $499, while the PS5 Digital Edition will cost $399.
Apple changes App Store rules
Apple, which is in the midst of a legal battle with Epic Games, has revised its App Store guidelines. As per the new rules, Apple will allow game streaming services such as Microsoft’s Xbox xCloud and Google’s Stadia to have their apps on the App Store. But there’s a catch. Games offered by Google Stadia or xCloud need to be downloaded directly from the App Store. This means if the xCloud offers 100 games, then each game has to be downloaded individually from the App Store. The move shows Apple’s power and dominance in the gaming world. Despite not selling video game consoles, Apple is the biggest player in the video games industry. After all, it runs the App Store, where it curates apps the way it wants to be.