Let’s get something straight: If someone had time traveled to 1995 and told me that AMD might be able to “save” the laptop market from Apple in 2023 with their chips, I’d immediately ask them It would have been how many drinks they consumed.

After all, the late 1990s were a different time and place for the PC industry. Intel was the undisputed king of the industry – especially in the desktop realm, as laptops were a relatively nascent market – and its company-owned foundry allowed it to release new processors at a cadence that not only impressed but rivaled competitors such as AMD. Also used to keep in the bay.

As someone who worked at Compaq which qualified and marketed AMD processors for its Presario consumer brand PCs as a hedge against Intel’s impenetrable pricing strategy, in my experience, AMD has a lot to work for. Easy had the reputation – but a Keystone Copes masterful for bad, sometimes abysmal, execution.

That’s how quickly things changed after CEO Lisa Siu came to AMD in 2012.

New AMD chips could challenge Apple silicon

Apple shook up the PC world when it started shipping its own chips, Apple Silicon, in late 2020. Intel.

Because Apple owns the entire hardware and software stack, which allows the company to optimize its macOS for enhanced performance, Mac desktops and laptops quickly became hot, in-demand items. While Windows PCs have a higher market share (about 58% versus 30% for macOS), Apple’s sales have steadily increased over the years.

However, the Windows laptop market may get a boost. Recently, AMD unveiled a new laptop CPU for thin and light devices that, according to the company, outperforms Apple’s M2 model from a year ago. Is this a true win for AMD, or is the company selectively focusing on specific performance metrics that distort the real story?

some important background

A few months ago, Intel released its Core i9 13980HX, a “notebook” CPU—a charitable description, at best—that it claimed outperformed Apple’s current fastest processor, the M2 Max. Although accurate claims of performance victories were technically valid in some areas, there were several limitations attached to such claims.

At first, the Intel processor was a highly unusable “notebook” chip because it lost all of its performance benefits the millisecond it ran on the battery and ate up watts like a man lost in the desert dying of thirst. Plus, whenever a notebook does something strenuous it generates a ton of heat to keep the fan running at full capacity. Finally, at almost seven pounds, it wasn’t exactly wide.

Still, it outperformed the M2 Max for some popular but specialized processor-intensive applications with a more powerful video card and frequent plugged-in use while wearing noise-canceling headphones. Although the concessions were a serious temptation for most Apple consumers, Intel struggled to put one of its CPUs on an even playing field.

This type of misstep has resulted in Intel inadvertently assuming that Apple’s M-series is the de facto industry leader, with continued advances in desktop and mobile computing, power and chip efficiency, and integrated graphics capability. Starting with the first M1 machines, Macs became much faster than any Windows PC in daily use, except in dedicated gaming rigs.

It’s AMD’s Time To Step Up To The Plate

The newest member of AMD’s Ryzen 7 family, the 7840U, is the chip the entire PC industry is talking about.

It’s immediately clear that this chip is a far more credible competitor than Intel’s 13980HX. Contrary to Intel’s insidious “notebook” characterization, the 7840U is actually a processor built specifically for thin-and-light laptops. As a result, it should generate less heat and work more effectively, and that’s just for openers.

Since AMD only introduced this new chip in late April, no production machines have used it in real-world testing yet, which is a moot point. Despite this, AMD recently posted a series of vague benchmarks that it says demonstrate greater performance over Apple’s native M2 processor, which is used by the Mac mini, MacBook Air, 13-inch MacBook Pro and two iPad Pros. done in versions.

AMD Ryzen 7840U vs Apple M2

Frankly, it’s still unknown whether the 7840U can maintain this apparently impressive performance on battery and how much battery it uses for comparable workloads as there’s no real system to test it on.

The overly general description of important areas of comparison, the narrow differences between the two chips in all but two categories, and the absence of details and sourcing for any conclusions raise concerns that must be validated in real-life testing.

AMD Ryzen 7040U Series Performance Chart

AMD Ryzen 7 7840U, part of the Ryzen 7040U series, benchmark performance vs Apple’s M2 (Chart credit: AMD)

Even if we accept AMD’s statements on their merits, a closer examination reveals that the company only offers distinct advantages in two of the six areas that its marketing team touts. Chosen as a “proof” of excellence. The other four results can be essentially bounded within the benchmark test margin of error.

Without question, real-world testing on real equipment can differ greatly from the marketing department’s benchmarks. Still, based on these and other early findings, there’s some evidence that AMD appears to have credibly — if only partially — challenged Apple’s M2 hegemony and significantly edged out Intel’s Core i9 13980HX. Which raises even more questions behind Intel.

With that in mind, the Ryzen 7 7840U is a fully integrated laptop chip that looks to compete with the base M2 processor and perhaps the M2 Pro in some areas. This is quite an achievement.

Even though the benchmarking suite scores are competitive, there are other things to consider, as games I tried to play on the Intel Core i9 13980HX laptop experienced a dramatic performance degradation when forced to operate on battery power.

closing thoughts

It’s too early to declare AMD’s 7784u as the new heavyweight champion, competing favorably with or even surpassing Apple’s M2.

From a reputational perspective, AMD recognizes the stakes here. We must assume that AMD measured the metrics for their comparison table under the laptop’s optimal conditions: when connected to AC power and without considering factors such as heat and battery consumption. From my point of view, this approach looks completely logical.

But let’s be clear. My conversations with AMD confirm that the company is working overtime to produce the best performing silicon possible. In my discussions with AMD executives, they are not dismissing Apple’s engineering capability (unlike Intel).

The post-pandemic PC market is currently in a growth funk, something that’s unlikely to change for several quarters. Companies like HP, Dell, and Lenovo have created some of the most beautiful laptop designs we’ve seen in years. However, without best-in-class chips, consumer and corporate customers may be inclined to consider non-Windows alternatives, despite the generally higher prices for Apple products.

If AMD’s 7840U turns out to be as advertised, it will give Windows laptops a much-needed jolt of adrenaline. No one likes any company, including Apple, to operate without competition, and AMD’s work here could be music to customers’ ears.

In the E-Commerce Times, my friend John Mello published an article on Adobe’s reported massive drop in prices and the reasons for them.

The market has shrunk, and sellers in various industries are dropping prices, so the relative cost of their products to those of others has decreased. This strategy potentially inflates demand, so they can often liquidate excess inventory at a loss.

This strategy cuts across industries and can cause problems because it erodes margins, resets expected value with buyers, and can put companies out of business if they don’t have the resources to cover an extended revenue shortfall. There are not enough large reserves for

Once this crisis is over, we will have far fewer companies, but what are the options? Is there a better way to ensure revenue without unnecessarily sacrificing profits? Let’s explore that this week, and we’ll end with our product of the week: a new Thunderbolt laptop dock from the Microsoft Surface folks.

problem of price war

Because the cause of the problem is economic – recession, fear of US default, and inflation struggling – these price drops may not have a material impact on volume, especially if other sellers in the segment do the same. Price wars are ugly, and surviving them can be incredibly painful.

Businesses usually resort to this strategy when leaders lack marketing knowledge. They go with what they think. Lowering prices is a knee-jerk reaction to trying to increase sales volume and reduce inventory. They either forget or don’t realize that their competitors’ response is now a price war, and they must continue to cut prices until they reach some arbitrarily low number and tap out. Can’t do it

You may have to react to a price war, but you never want to start one, because unless you have a significant cost advantage, there is a real risk that you will not survive it.

textbook feedback

I have many degrees, but my first degree was in merchandising, which is an applied form of marketing, and I’ve been in and out of marketing my entire career, most recently as a consultant.

The textbook response to a slump in demand is to ramp up marketing spending on effective demand-generation marketing to draw people to your product. You can bundle or tie-in and target people with what you are selling or will soon be in the market for.

However, there are traditional problems with this. The effect is not immediate. It takes time to create, test, and run a demand-generation campaign, a process that will take months when vendors are already in crisis. Also, we have some new problems due to streaming and digital content. Traditional marketing doesn’t seem to have the same impact as it used to.

People, especially younger demographics, are no longer watching ad-driven TV or radio. Print media has declined since the launch of the Internet, and Google (which dominates online advertising) and Facebook (which should be moving into targeted advertising) don’t understand how to do marketing, so their platforms don’t deliver. Conversion rates that advertisers want.

Influencer marketing has been badly damaged by influencers misbehaving and diluted by their ever-increasing numbers, and placement (where you put the product in the content) hasn’t resulted in the successes we’d hoped for.

Generative AI may be the answer

I thought Facebook and social media in general would be the answer. Facebook, over time, learns a lot about you and should be able to serve timely and effective ads. However, its approach of allowing almost anyone to advertise has resulted in so much fraud that many of us don’t trust Facebook ads anymore.

You could go straight to marketing, but staffing a call center is expensive, and pushing that call center to another part of the world with lower labor costs really pisses off potential customers.

But what if you harnessed the full power of Generative AI?

Generative AI can sound like almost anyone, respond as if you’re talking to a real person, and even develop massive relationships with them. You can train the AI ​​with the best skills and then let it loose. If you act correctly, the subscriber may appreciate the call or message.

However, you’ll need to approach the problem like a top salesperson, which is to provide value, connect with the customer, and build a relationship. This method is easier if they are already a customer and if you can offer either information or a service for free that the customer wants in order to further the conversation and establish a deeper relationship before committing to something new.

If the AI ​​is properly funded and conceived and the customer is profiled correctly so you know enough about them so you can build a deep relationship, this should solve the marketing issue. You can use this same technique to get feedback on what you’ve sold, market-test future product ideas, and get early warnings about product problems before they happen. That the customer throws out the product and blacklists your brand.

Generative AI is the future of marketing, but judging from what is happening, that future may have to happen now.

wrapping up

As John points out in his article, many, if not most, markets are in freefall due largely to strategic price constraints, resulting in unexpected price wars.

A better way would be to increase marketing. But not only has marketing talent declined over the years, but market development funds (MDFs) have also rolled into the margins and are not funding marketing, and the places we used to market are becoming less and less effective. are becoming

Generative AI is emerging as a powerful tool to better engage with customers and sell to them. I don’t think we can wait that long. Maybe it’s time to hit the gas and start funding generative AI marketing before a large number of companies become history. just saying…

tech product of the week

Surface Thunderbolt 4 Dock

Laptop docks have gone through a lot of evolution. They began primarily as a mechanical way of securing laptops to desks and were primarily focused on theft. I personally saw their benefit when one of our overseas offices was visited by a fake tech at lunch, and our employees came back to the office with laptops surprisingly clean.

Since then, security on laptops has reduced the risk of theft, and with lower prices, the risk of having a computer stolen isn’t as high as in the office. If one gets stolen, your car is more likely to be stolen (never leave one in front), while you are traveling or you have left it somewhere.

Docks are now more devices of convenience that allow you to connect power, wired Ethernet, some peripherals, your keyboard, mouse and monitor with a single plug. They make life easier by enabling you to leave your charger at home, in your laptop bag, or backpack, and more easily connect and disconnect everything connected to the dock.

Thunderbolt docks have the added benefit of extremely fast throughput. Still, it generally only works well with Intel-based products and for those that need to work on large datasets, images, movies, or AI. The new Surface Thunderbolt 4 Dock is one example.

Microsoft Surface Thunderbolt 4 Dock

Surface Thunderbolt 4 Dock (Image Credit: Microsoft)

While it will likely work with other Intel-based Thunderbolt-enabled laptops and (with degraded performance) non-Thunderbolt products (such as most OEM-sourced power supplies and docks), it will work best with Microsoft Surface products: Surface Laptop 5, Surface Laptop Studio, Surface Pro 8 and the Intel-based Surface Pro 9.

Remember that Microsoft designed its Surface family to appeal to people who desire a design-forward product like Apple’s, but who, like me, don’t want to deal with Apple. With a Thunderbolt connection, this dock will support up to two 4K monitors, which is all I want now that I’m writing on a laptop on a plane and missing out on my home office screen real estate.

It has a decent port out – analogous to a desktop computer – and an audio jack if you prefer to use wired rather than wireless headphones. The power supply is remote and can sit on the floor, and you can bolt it to your desk if you’re concerned that one of your co-workers might “borrow” it.

Dock side view of Microsoft Surface Thunderbolt 4 ports

Surface Thunderbolt 4 Dock Port (Image Credit: Microsoft)

As with most Thunderbolt docks, it’s pricey at $299.99, but for those who have a Surface Laptop with Thunderbolt support, it’s worth it (as mentioned, it will work with non-Thunderbolt laptops, but for those you’ll Can save almost $ 50. Scrambling down on the Surface Dock 2.

One of my favorite laptops is the Surface Notebook; Nice balance of design and performance, and this dock makes that laptop even more useful, so the Surface Thunderbolt 4 Dock is my product of the week.

While founder and CEO Elon Musk’s unpredictable management of Twitter has forced Tesla stock into a sharp decline, the carmaker’s models remain popular through most of 2022, according to Cox Automotive’s Kelley Blue Book.

For the first nine months of 2022, it was reported that four of the top six best-selling electric cars were Teslas. At the top of the rankings were the Tesla Model Y, with 191,451 units sold, and the Model 3, with 156,357 units. The Ford Mustang Mach-E stood third with 28,089 units.

“With all the negative headlines surrounding Tesla and its increasingly controversial CEO Elon Musk in recent weeks, it’s easy to forget that the company’s cars are still very popular,” data journalist Felix Richter wrote Tuesday on Statista.

“While it is too early to say whether Musk’s Twitter acquisition and the unrest that accompanied it will have a significant negative impact on demand for Tesla’s cars,” he continued, “its current position as the maker of the most popular electric cars in the United States And evident in many parts of the world.”

power of the first mover

In the EV space, Tesla has been wildly popular, and it remains so, observed Brent Gruber, executive director of global automotive at JD Power, a consumer research, data and analytics firm based in Troy, Michigan.

Citing data from JDP’s December survey, Gruber said that four out of 10 buyers looking to buy a vehicle in the next 12 months are “very” or “somewhat” likely to buy an EV. Considering the Tesla brand. “It’s second only to Chevrolet,” Gruber told TechNewsWorld.

“However,” he continued, “the percentage of those potential EV shoppers who are considering Tesla has declined by five percentage points since November.”

Chris Jones, principal analyst at global market research company Canalys, said Tesla still benefits from being a first mover in the EV market.

“There was very little competition, and there still isn’t much competition,” Jones told TechNewsWorld.

“Tesla also had a status appeal that the Nissan Leaf, Chevy Volt, BMW i3 didn’t have at the time,” he added.

Another attractive feature for early customers, he continued, were over-the-air updates to Tesla’s software. “Now only some of its competitors can do that,” he said. “So Tesla was a decade ahead in software updates and the ability to make the vehicle better when it was out of date.”

Charging Advantage

Being a “pure play” electric car company that works at scale is another advantage Tesla has in the market — in addition to being the only EV maker with a charging network, said Rob Enderle, president and principal analyst at the Enderle Group. An advisory services firm in Bend, Ore.

“Other car companies are ramping up their electric vehicles, but they are facing supply problems due to the pandemic, war and other supply issues,” Enderle told TechNewsWorld.

This chart shows the best-selling electric cars in the US for the first nine months of 2022.

Chart credit: Statista

Tesla’s charging network is a key element of its offering, maintained Mike Ramsey, vice president and analyst for automotive and smart mobility at Gartner. “Their charging network is a fundamental differentiator between them and other brands selling electric vehicles,” he told TechNewsWorld.

Gruber said vehicle charging is one of Tesla’s notable advantages over its competitors. In JDP’s 2022 charging studies, Tesla received awards for highest satisfaction with Level 2 permanently attached home chargers, public Level 2 charging and DC fast charging.

In the public charging study, Gruber observed that the wide availability of the Tesla charging network, ease of use – especially with the payment/account process – and network reliability helped the network perform well.

Ease of use was also one of the standout metrics for Tesla in the home charging study, he said.

bumpy road ahead

While 2022 has been a good year for Tesla sales, storm clouds may be on the horizon. “Musk’s Twitter escapades, coupled with his move to the political right, have alienated the typical left-leaning Tesla buyer, hurting sales and forcing rebates and other practices to move vehicles.” ,” Enderle maintained.

“Our local Tesla dealer appears to be up to its neck in overstock due to slow sales, suggesting Tesla numbers may be in transition or overpriced,” he said.

“Since Tesla sells through their own stores, there is no third party verification of their sales numbers, and they have been going to promote rapidly declining valuations for some time now,” he explained.

“As FTX showed,” he continued, “oversight on corporations is almost non-existent, which calls into question much of what is reported by every public company, especially those under high stress like Tesla and Twitter. “

The competition is also heating up. “Buyers have an increasing selection of EVs to choose from,” Gruber said.

“The number of products coming from OEMs is growing rapidly,” he continued. “Those products now fill vacancies in popular segments and brands with high loyalty rates, such as the Ford F-150 Lightning and Toyota bZ4X.”

“Competition is increasing, and we’re seeing it in our data,” he said.

musk chakra

Ramsey agreed that competition will be a future challenge for Tesla. “They showed the way for startups like Rivian and Lucid,” he said. “Those guys are going to get stronger and stronger.”

“Meanwhile, traditional car companies are adding more and more electric vehicles to their lineups that are going to be a lot more affordable than Tesla,” he observed.

“New competitors like Lucid and Rivian are causing Tesla pain,” Enderle said. Anecdotally, he notes that two of his neighbors now have Rivian, and one who owns a Tesla is considering a Rivian.

“Plus,” he continued, “better electric vehicle solutions from various carmakers will put more pressure on the company, but the firm’s biggest problem is Musk, and fixing him has proven problematic.”

“They forced Tesla to provide incentives to sell cars, resulting in a massive drop in Tesla’s valuation and Musk’s net worth,” he added. “It has also increased the number of potential Tesla buyers considering alternatives.”

Ramsey pointed out, however, that Tesla’s CEO has long been a mix for the company. “Since the company’s inception, Elon Musk has been key to Tesla’s success and the source of some of its problems,” he said. “He’s gone through periods where he’s had more losses than gains, but it goes in cycles.”

A government standards agency’s crackdown on potential post-quantum cryptographic algorithms will strongly stimulate the PQC market over the next five years, according to an international research and advisory firm.

In its recently released Post-Quantum Cryptography Applications Analysis report, ABI Research predicts PQC revenue to grow 12% from US$196 million in 2022 to $218.6 million in 2023 and 20% from $328.7 million in 2026 to 2027 395.3 million dollars.

The nascent market will kick into high gear once the National Institute of Standards finalizes its choice of PQC algorithm, the report said.

“NIST is the foremost standards development organization leading PQC algorithm development, and depends on the successful completion of this process, after which work on algorithm integration and protocol updates is advanced by other organizations, industry associations, and open source movements.” “ABI Cyber ​​Security Applications Research Director Michaela Menting said in a statement.

“The progress of work in these forums will be a sign of technology maturity, and the goal for vendors will be to introduce ‘plug and play’ type technologies to their respective industries, allowing commercial integration and ease of adoption.”

Ray Harishankar, quantum safe lead at IBM, told TechNewsWorld, “When NIST announced that it has selected four encryption and digital signature algorithms to build quantum-secure standards by 2024, the field took an important step.” Is.”

Preparing for PQC Migration

The ABI’s growth forecast was not surprising to some in the quantum domain. “Since the latest NIST announcement, the cork has partially come out of the bottle,” Ben Packman, senior vice president of strategy at PQShield, a cryptography standards developer in Oxford, UK, told TechNewsWorld.

“They were a lot of people who were waiting to see what NIST would announce to think about their plans for migration to PQC,” he explained.

“I say out of the bottle partly because until those standards are ratified in 2024 – it is just the promise of a standard. Still, it allows people to plan with some certainty, ” They said.

When the standards are finalized, they will have a significant impact on the technology industry because everyone from vendors to standards bodies relying on cryptography will need to adapt to the changes and updated protocols, Samantha Mabe, product marketing management for Entrust Director, an identity solutions provider from Shakopee, Minn., explained to TechNewsWorld.

Post CEO Anderson Cheng said, in addition to vendors and standards bodies, anyone who needs to keep a secret for more than 10 years needs to follow NIST’s work closely, because that time period is at quantum risk. Well within the time limit. Quantum, a quantum-secure encryption, blockchain and digital identity company based in London.

Cheng told TechNewsWorld that the NSA, GCHQ, DOD and MI6 are seeing their encrypted data stolen right now. “From time to time, their internet traffic is being diverted to some Eastern European country for two or three hours at a time and then back to normal. The consensus is that Russia or some adversary is conducting rehearsals to suck up the data and decrypt it later.

NIST is not alone in crafting cryptography standards for the post-quantum era. “Work is also underway at other standards bodies – such as the IETF – to update secure message formats – such as S/MIME email and code signing – and secure protocols – such as TLS – to adopt PQC, which includes hybrid cryptographic data structures. including formalizing systems — such as composite certificates — for those who don’t think they’re ready yet to put all their eggs in the post-quantum basket,” Mabe said.

infrastructure review

Achieving the revenue growth forecast by ABI will require overcoming several challenges. For example, the PQ solution state is likely to remain unstable for some time. Mabe said, “While we move to PQ-safe algorithms today, we must acknowledge that they are a less mature set of algorithms and that it is important to remain agile as they may still need to change in the future. “

The technology demands posed by PQC solutions will be a challenge for both vendors and customers. Mabe pointed out that organizations will need to do a health check on their technology and the cryptography that exists in their infrastructure today to ensure that they have the right scale to support the additional computing power required by these new algorithms. There are other technologies.

Another challenge facing PQC will be the breadth and diversity of existing commercial cryptographic applications. For example, migrating to something like TLS is relatively simple. You add new cipher suites to the list, and if both peers support it, it is used. Otherwise, you go down the list that both partners support.

“Contrast that with data warehouses containing encrypted data over the last 30 years or with PKI-enabled ID badges, ePassports or gift cards,” Mabe said. “You can upgrade the card to PQ, but what happens when it encounters a terminal that hasn’t been upgraded since 2015?”

Packman said that PQC requires a change in the way people think about implementing cryptography. “In the past, people would cook in something and forget about it,” he explained. “With the advancement of computers, it is now clear that things need to be constantly updated over time. There needs to be some agility in the way people implement cryptography. Different types for different types of scenarios. will have algorithms.”

Thanks largely to Nvidia, GPUs have almost eclipsed CPUs as a technology driving advancement. When it comes to AI, especially on the training side, GPUs reign supreme. In general, GPUs make our games and even the most advanced photo and video editing tools work better — and with social media, many people are becoming creation experts.

But while AMD, Nvidia, and, more recently, Intel have played in this highly competitive space, all three have come to market recently with distinct strategies, each with unique benefits, risks, and opportunities. As we here in the US recover from our Thanksgiving food coma, let’s explore these strategies.

Then we’ll close with our product of the week: Microsoft’s new Arm-based Surface Pro 9 that could point to the near future of PC advancement.

Marketing Strategies: The Apple Example

My first degree was in merchandising, which deals with branding, shelving, product placement, and product strategy. As a result, I’m a little fascinated with how different companies approach the PC market.

For example, Apple is old school, vertically integrated, and uses lock-in to mine its base for money. This strategy resulted in massive profits, but the company was no longer able to lead the market with innovation. Granted, public companies are measured by profits, not innovation, and if you had to choose one over the other as a CEO who wants to keep your job, profits would also be your focus.

Except for the Microsoft Surface, other PC companies are more liberal, have higher interoperability, no lock-in, and enjoy far more innovation but face less customer loyalty and smaller margins. But they are also less likely to fail catastrophically because they are not mining their customers for money.

IBM’s near collapse in the early 1990s was largely due to a strategy similar to that of Apple. This happened because the clients usually do not like to stake money or do mining for money for extreme profits. Eventually, a company using this approach goes too far, and its customers leave the platform. This is roughly what happened with IBM and it prejudged the strategy Apple still uses.

For now, the strategy still works for Apple. However, this probably won’t work for Dell, HP, or Lenovo, because none of those companies can afford the Microsoft part of the solution individually and because their enterprise buyers are aware of the tactics used by Apple and have common Normally try to avoid it. Plague – Because it reduces customer power and corporations love buyer power a lot.

Having said that, while Apple’s marketing efforts have declined significantly since the departure of Steve Jobs in both magnitude and execution, Apple still leads the PC market in marketing, indicating that it once was under Jobs. How much was ahead, even though the company was far less profitable. Then.

Marketing goes to the core of the GPU strategies that we will be discussing.


Nvidia is arguably the segment leader and displays with it’s deepest line, and it’s the only one of the three with a Halo product. It’s interesting because on the CPU side, AMD’s Threadripper spun that market on its ear and allowed AMD to move aggressively on Intel’s workstation opportunity. It usurped key leadership positions for AMD and Lenovo, using it in part to gain segment dominance.

On the GPU side, the closest thing to AMD’s Threadripper is Nvidia’s 4090 RTX card, which is a beast. It performs more than most need and draws so much power that it’s melting power connectors and forcing power supply upgrades to run the part. But, in terms of raw performance, now no one in its segment can touch it.

A halo strategy uses an expensive showcase product to attract people to the brand and, if done correctly, can lead to increased sales of more affordable products that will sell in higher volumes. In the automobile market, it’s like having a Mercedes-Maybach or a supercar (Ford most recently used the Ford GT) to drive people to the dealership.

Since there is no such thing as an Nvidia store, the traffic aspect of the 4090 RTX remains untested and untapped. However, it still gives Nvidia performance bragging rights and solidifies its perceived market leadership, even though most buyers will be buying more affordable and underpowered alternatives.


As mentioned, it’s interesting that, given AMD’s success with Threadripper, it hasn’t come up with a similar strategy, which would be a Threadripper CPU and Threadripper-like GPU in a killer workstation or gaming rig. For now, it’s the Nvidia 4090 RTX card.

Instead, AMD has pulled out two cards in the performance sweet spot. Unlike what Ford did with the Ford GT, GM did with the Corvette, specifically with the new C8. It provides most of the performance advantages that the Ford GT offers in a far more useful and affordable fashion, allowing the Corvette to massively outperform the Ford GT while costing a fraction of what the Ford costs.

The idea of ​​performance at a price you can afford resonates with buyers and doesn’t create some of the image problems that a halo product can create, such as excessive cost and excessive power use, resulting in negative coverage It is possible sustainability.

Buyers love the values, and while you don’t get the same performance bragging rights or visibility as with a Halo product, you also don’t have a problem with a part that’s pushing performance boundaries resulting in meltdowns. There may be problems like connectors (which Nvidia reports are still few in number and may be the result of assembly errors).


Intel is new to this market and has two big problems. The first is that people know and trust GPU parts from AMD and Nvidia, and the second is that those two companies are chasing each other so hard that it’s hard for another firm to catch them from behind. Almost impossible. Intel needs to build market share and performance isn’t up to the top end, but it can deliver on features.

This approach is closer to how Honda entered the car market by creating an affordable part that offers features beyond its price class and where the real volume is, especially during a tight financial market where consumers are more willing to spend their money. are looking.

Right now, people are becoming very frugal, and Intel is working hard for the frugal buyer who only has the budget for an entry-level part. Intel’s cards aren’t performing competitively with Nvidia’s and AMD’s top offerings, but they’re a fraction of the price and have many of the same features typically not in cards in Intel’s sub-$300 price bracket.

Wrapping Up: The Best Strategy

The plan of action that best reflects the seller’s capabilities is the one to implement. The halo product strategy works for Nvidia as it must maintain its mark of the performance leader in the segment.

Given the success of AMD’s Threadripper, I’m surprised AMD hasn’t employed a similar strategy. Still, its approach to providing all the performance you need and creating an impression of superior performance value is in line with the historical brand image AMD has built against Intel, where it was historically the value play.

Intel doesn’t yet have the performance to compete with AMD or Nvidia at the high end, but it has a similar feature set, and the idea of ​​providing value play is the only way it’s open. The timing was fortunate for Intel as the market is looking for higher valuations given current economic conditions, providing a significant boost to Intel’s outlook.

So, Intel’s approach isn’t the only one the company can currently execute. Luckily, it was incredibly well timed, suggesting it will be far more successful this year than it otherwise would have been.

tech product of the week

surface pro 9

The Surface was built to compete with Apple and has many of the same features: a limited, focused line, a design-forward configuration that’s as much art as it is function, and a premium experience.

Microsoft missed out by making its stores Microsoft stores instead of Surface stores, so the stores tend to underperform their Apple counterparts. But Microsoft is a fundamentally different company and needs to keep Dell, Lenovo, HP and others happy, I understand how this decision came about. I think it was wrong, given its aim.

That said, the Surface Tablet was the primary weapon it had, when it first came to market, against the threat the iPad represented: a tablet that had long battery life, was extremely light, and at the time, effectively Was positioned as a laptop killer.

Steve Jobs, who piloted that product, died and since then Apple has decided not to replace the laptop with the iPad. Instead, it wants people to buy both, stalling the replacement effort.

But Microsoft didn’t get that memo. The initial surface was somewhat patchy. It would run Office, but its battery life was poor for a tablet. Over the years, both performance and battery life have improved.

This most recent Surface Pro 9 Arm Edition is the ultimate tablet. It does the best job of providing an iPad-like experience while still delivering PC-level performance. In fact, in some cases, it outperforms PC performance due to its unique AI NPU (Neural Processing Unit).

Microsoft Surface Pro 9

Surface Pro 9 | Image credit: Microsoft

I initially noticed a drop in performance in Microsoft Hello’s facial recognition capability. Normally, it takes a few seconds for a typical PC to recognize you, and this new Arm-based Surface Pro 9 does it almost instantly. My desktop PCs with specialized cameras are not as fast.

The video game I play most often is City of Heroes. On low performing PCs, it has to be scaled back to run on an arm machine, and it crashes or fails to load. However, on this new Surface Pro 9, it loaded and ran and even gave me advanced graphics options that I usually don’t get unless I’m running a discrete GPU (although, I hope , if I turn them on, the frame rate will be unplayable). Still, the fact that the game even loaded and was playable was a first with such a tablet, especially a running arm.

Another interesting aspect of this latest Surface Pro 9 tablet is that it accepts not only the proprietary magnetic Surface charger but also a generic USB-C charger. I really like the magnetic charger because I trip over the power cord, and if you pull on it the cable detaches and doesn’t cause the laptop to fall to the floor. On the other hand, a USB-C charger is much more useful as you can use a third-party charger, borrow a charger or even use it to charge your phone.

The optional pen and keyboard are now nicely nested together (I’m forever losing the pen). While I generally prefer a larger screen and a notebook form factor, this latest Surface was surprisingly usable and incredibly portable. At less than two pounds, with up to 19 hours of battery life, 5G WAN capability, and vastly improved video conferencing camera features (thanks to that NPU), I think the Surface Pro 9 is the future of ultra-portable products.

When Microsoft’s Surface Pro 9 launched, I knew it would be very different, and it is. It’s the first Arm-based product I’ve tested that not only feels compromised but outperforms its x86 counterpart in battery life, connectivity, and conferencing, which begs the question: What will the next generation do?

Ultimately, I think the Surface Pro 9 arm product is a milestone for the next generation of PCs, and it’s my product of the week. Let’s hope Microsoft does the same for the Surface Laptop!

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ECT News Network.

A technology forum watchdog group reported Monday that it has found more than 100 Facebook groups, some with thousands of members, where business management accounts are bought and sold, in violation of the social network’s rules.

The accounts can be used to run multiple pages and advertising campaigns, according to an investigation by the Tech Transparency Project, a Washington, D.C.-based information and research organization, creating new opportunities for online scams, misinformation and election interference. Can Impact of major technology platforms on society.

TTP Director Katie Paul told TechNewsWorld, “For years, Facebook has claimed that its artificial intelligence systems can clean its platform, but time and time again, we have found that Facebook’s technology fails to remove harmful content. that violates its policies.” “That’s unfortunately also true for this black market for ad accounts.”

TTP explained that Business Manager accounts allow social media managers and marketers to manage a collection of Facebook ad accounts, Facebook Pages, and Instagram accounts from a single dashboard. It added that Facebook’s parent company Meta promotes them as a “one-stop shop” for advertising and marketing on its platform.

The report notes that accounts are particularly valuable to scammers because business managers can run a range of advertising campaigns and easily add new users and ad accounts to expand their reach.

In Facebook groups examined by TTP, the group found that users often sold accounts for large amounts. Several accounts are linked to someone’s credit cards, it continued, indicating they were hacked or stolen. “It’s obviously a big problem for individual users or small businesses who all of a sudden have an unauthorized person racking up big charges on their card,” Paul said.

The report also found that in some cases, sellers offered approved accounts to advertise political, election and social issues.

facebook act

After being alerted to the situation, Facebook began weeding out the black market. “We removed groups that were flagged to us last week for violating our policies, and we will continue to review additional groups and remove violators.” the company said in a statement provided to TechNewsWorld by spokeswoman Erin McPike.

In addition to deleting the group, the company said it has set up checkpoints for a number of group administrators who are required to provide additional information before they can access their accounts.

Regardless of Facebook’s actions, the report says the black market raises some troubling questions for the company and its parent Meta. Given Facebook’s long-standing scam ad problem and its history with Russian election interference, it’s unclear why Meta isn’t doing more to combat this illegal trade, the report said.

Clearwater, Fla. Jenny Grisdoorn, senior manager of global social media strategy at KnowBe4, a security awareness training provider in the U.S., cited Facebook’s community guidelines as evidence of a lack of concern about fraudulent accounts. Those guidelines state, “If it appears to have been hacked or compromised and we are unable to confirm ownership of the account after one year, we may disable or delete your account.”

“That should be enough to state that Facebook doesn’t care about getting rid of these fake or hacked accounts, so it’s best that anyone who uses the platform does their part,” Grisdoorn told TechNewsworld. Protects personal information as much as possible.”

Fake Accounts, Real Revenue

Some critics of Facebook have suggested that the social network has taken a lighter touch on fraudulent accounts because they generate revenue.

“These black-market Business Manager accounts are approved to advertise on Facebook. This means that Facebook profits whenever the purchasers of these illegal accounts run ads on the platform.

“This raises new questions about how much of Facebook’s advertising revenue is coming from hacked, stolen or smuggled ad accounts,” he added.

While acknowledging that Facebook can make money from fraudulent accounts, Will Duffield, a policy analyst at the Cato Institute, a Washington, DC think tank, pointed out that fake accounts don’t generate as much revenue as legitimate accounts.

“There’s some incentive not to hit the problem too hard, but on the business side, every black market account means a business customer is dissatisfied because their account has been stolen,” Duffield told TechNewsWorld.

“If legitimate accounts are being stolen and turned into black market accounts, that doesn’t bode well for Facebook,” he said.

platform for election interference

Facebook has a longstanding problem with accounts being hijacked to run scam ads using people’s credit card information, TTP reports. It’s easy to see how Business Manager accounts could be useful to scammers, the report continued, given their ability to run multiple ad campaigns at once.

It said owners of Business Manager accounts have repeatedly described how hackers have taken over their accounts, raising their billing limits by raising thousands of dollars to spend on scam ads that lure people to suspicious e-mail addresses. Commerce leads to websites.

TTP’s investigation also found sellers offering accounts that could run ads on social issues, elections or politics. This raises concerns that they could be used for coordinated unauthentic activity and election interference, the report said.

“Facebook executives often speak of their efforts to prevent election interference, but at the same time, the company is facilitating a black market for accounts that can run election ads in specific countries,” Paul said.

“Facebook is essentially undermining its own election security efforts with its failure to address this issue,” she continued. “The Facebook Business Manager accounts identified by TTP are of particular concern because they can run multiple advertising campaigns at once, increasing the ability of bad actors to spread misinformation.”

Challenging work

Controlling disinformation on Facebook is a challenging problem, said Vincent Reynold, an associate professor in the Department of Communication Studies at Emerson College in Boston.

“It is extremely difficult for Facebook to identify and suppress disinformation because the expression of disinformation continues to evolve on these platforms,” ​​Raynauld told TechNewsWorld.

“If Facebook sets up a filter to catch certain types of misinformation, the creators of misinformation will adjust its structure so that it escapes the filter and impacts public conversation,” he explained.

Issues like hijacked accounts have always been a part of Facebook, he said, but the overall weight of Facebook when it comes to disinformation and its impact on political processes makes these types of issues more important to the public. .

“Social media has become an integral part of people’s daily lives, especially when it comes to accessing information that influences not only consumer decisions but political decisions as well,” he said.

According to a new report from Parks Associates, the home security systems market continues to grow despite concerns about false alerts.

The report noted that security system ownership is at an all-time high in many areas, with more than a third of US broadband households (36%) having home security systems and 41% of multi-dwelling unit managers with systems in their common areas. are installed. and parking garage.

“The market was stagnant, making about 20% penetration for decades,” said Yaniv Amir, president of Essence USA, which is part of the Essence Group, a global technology company.

“Over the past five to seven years, we’ve seen significant growth as security has become a part of home automation,” he told TechNewsWorld. “It reached the mid-thirties.”

The report noted that the past several years have been good for selling systems in the small and medium business market. With the COVID-19 pandemic, it explained that the spring and summer of 2020 were characterized by social and political unrest, resulting in increased concerns about safety and security.

false alert problem

According to the report, despite promising growth, accurate detection of security threats remains a problem. False alarms are a threat to user satisfaction with their systems, it maintained, with two out of three security system owners paying fines for false alarms with an average cost of about $150.

“In America, false alarms are a really big deal,” Amir said. “It causes a lot of people to turn off their alarm systems, making them nonfunctional.”

He said one way to avoid false alarms is to use artificial intelligence to trigger the alarm from a single detector. “If you have multiple sensors, an intruder is likely to hit more than one sensor, so an alert from a single sensor is likely to be a false alert,” he explained.

“More advanced systems can use facial recognition to determine whether a face belongs to someone living in a household,” he said. “More advanced technologies can also identify unusual behavior – for example the owner of the house was being attacked.”

Chris White, senior analyst at Parks, told TechNewsWorld that effective monitoring is the best way to avoid false alarms. In addition, he continued, new video and audio analytics will help.

“Device makers are increasingly using AI powered by the cloud or more powerful EDGE to analyze video and audio data collected by cameras and microphones around the residence and verify that the detected event Instead of a pet walking on the porch or branch, there is a danger in the strong wind,” he said.

AI to the rescue

Believing that better analysis will help eliminate false alerts, Mark N. Venna, president and principal analyst at SmartTech Research in San Jose, Calif., said AI will ultimately do the best job of reducing false alerts. “This would allow the cameras to ‘learn’ about a homeowner’s specific environment,” he explained.

“This technology may be integrated at the device level, but it may also surface in Wi-Fi 6e or Wi-Fi 7e routers which can contribute by dramatically reducing latency along with improved bandwidth,” They said.

IDC senior analyst Adam Wright said vendors can do things to improve smart security systems, but it is the user’s responsibility to configure the system appropriately.

“This is one of the drawbacks of adopting a do-it-yourself approach to building a home security system – setting up, setting up and configuring all the necessary rules and sequences can be cumbersome,” he told TechNewsWorld.

“An advantage of professional installers is that they can customize the security solution to the needs of the home and help the user set up the correct configuration to ensure that the system works as intended and avoid false alerts and Minimizes other disruptions,” he said.

integration headache

False warnings aren’t the only problem with home security systems. “Reliable connectivity is a big limitation,” argued Wright. Often network-connected devices become unresponsive or offline, and troubleshooting isn’t always straightforward or easy.

“Furthermore,” he added, “integration with third-party devices remains problematic. For example, dragging a video feed onto a smart display can cause a number of errors and delays that can disrupt the experience.”

Vena agreed that it’s difficult to integrate multiple brands of appliances with many existing home security systems.

“Some of the better home security systems, though not all, do a fair job of integrating devices from different manufacturers, playing an agnostic role,” he said, “but user frustrations can be high when they determine a device that needs to be installed.” He has bought. Do not operate within the home security system’s ecosystem or integrate with your Master Control app.”

He sees future security systems departing from the use of video. “I’m most optimistic about ‘Wi-Fi Sensing’ technology, which allows every Wi-Fi device in your home to use the Wi-Fi signal to determine fall detection, break-ins, and so forth. is,” he observed.

“Acoustic sensing technology can also help detect glass breaks or screams that can be used to send alerts,” he said. “These latter capabilities also have privacy benefits because they don’t use video to make these determinations, something that’s as appealing as an indoor sensor.”

DIY Monitoring

The Parks report also noted that an important new factor in the security sector is the increase in self-monitoring security systems. These self-monitoring systems send alerts to users’ phones for a low monthly fee.

“Self-monitoring has the benefit of lower monthly costs, but it also requires the homeowner to act on alert and contact authorities if a break-in or intruder is detected,” Venna said. Vena said. “It’s a significant disadvantage, because most people don’t want or can’t have their homes monitored.”

Wright said one of the biggest benefits of self-monitoring is the peace of mind that the system won’t falsely trigger a response from emergency services, which can be disruptive or costly.

“However, the disadvantage is if an alert or alarm goes undetected,” he continued. “For example, if the user is not near their phone at all times, or there is a connectivity issue with the phone that does not receive alerts. Then the incident will go unanswered which could mean that emergency services are not dispatched in time.” Huh. “

According to the report, 33% of self-monitoring security system owners told park researchers that they intended to switch to a professional monitoring service because they were not available when a security incident occurred, and that they could not take appropriate action.