Nov 11, 2020

Apple debuts new Macs with M1 chip of its own design

Apple
M1
SoC
William Smith
2 min
Apple has announced the first Mac computers powered by its own series of chips
Apple has announced the first Mac computers powered by its own series of chips...

Apple has announced the first Mac computers powered by its own series of chips.

Apple was previously a customer of Intel, having used its processors since 2006. The newly announced next generation of Macs will use Apple’s own M1 chip, which it describes as optimised specifically for Mac systems by virtue of its small size and power efficiency.

The system on a chip (SoC), combines a number of technologies, including the much vaunted 5-nanometre process for packing more transistors onto a chip (16 billion in this case). Apple further claimed that the M1 exhibited the world’s best CPU performance per watt, and the fastest integrated graphics in a PC. The chip also features the built-in Apple Neural Engine to speed up machine learning tasks by up to 15 times.

In a press release, Johny Srouji, Apple’s senior vice president of Hardware Technologies, said: “There has never been a chip like M1, our breakthrough SoC for the Mac. It builds on more than a decade of designing industry-leading chips for iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch, and ushers in a whole new era for the Mac.

“When it comes to low-power silicon, M1 has the world’s fastest CPU core, the world’s fastest integrated graphics in a personal computer, and the amazing machine learning performance of the Apple Neural Engine. With its unique combination of remarkable performance, powerful features, and incredible efficiency, M1 is by far the best chip we’ve ever created.”

The M1’s SoC nature is inspired by Apple’s prowess in phones, bypassing the traditional method of separate chips accomplishing different tasks within a PC.

The chip is present in the new MacBook Air, Macbook Pro and Mac mini, which will all use the new MacOS Big Sur operating system. That will be backwards compatible with older, Intel-powered devices, however.

(Image: Apple)

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Jun 18, 2021

Start-ups receive $60 billion investment, smash 2020 record

techstartups
investment
Technology
Laura Berrill
2 min
Europe’s tech sector start-ups attracted more venture capital investment in 2021 than the whole of 2020 with the UK leading in tech policy

Start-ups on the continent have raised a massive 43.8 billion euros ($60.9 billion) in just the first six months of 2021, according to figures from Dealroom, surpassing the record 38.5 billion euros invested last year..

This is despite the fact that the number of venture deals signed so far is around half the amount agreed in 2020. Only about 2,700 funding rounds have been raised so far this year, compared to 5,200 last year.

Prime examples in times of change

Examples are Swedish buy-now-pay-later firm Klarna which has raised more than $1.6 billion in two financing rounds, the German stock trading app Trade Republic received $900 million in May and British payments provider Checkout.com snapped up $450 million at the start of the year.

The figures suggest that European tech firms are pulling in far larger sums of money per investment than in previous years, which defies the economic uncertainty of the pandemic and boosted online services enormously.

The CEO of Checkout.com, Guillaume Pousaz, said start-ups have often been created in times of crisis, citing the emergence of several new financial technology companies in the wake of the 2008 global financial crisis.

He added that big transformational change was often the time when there is the emergence of a lot of new start-ups, sometimes when people are losing their jobs for associated reasons.

UK leading the charge

Scale-Up Europe, a group that includes the founders of UiPath and Wise, proposed 21 recommendations to help the region build “the next generation of tech giants.” Among the suggestions are tax credits to corporates for investing in start-ups and regulatory changes that adapt to new innovations.

Sebastian Siemiatkowski, CEO of Klarna, said the U.K. leads Europe when it comes to tech policy, and that there were a number of regulatory issues needing to be addressed before the European Union can produce tech giants of its own.

Siemiatkowski highlighted EU regulation of web cookies as an example of “poor regulation.” Yet, as the number of $1 billion start-ups in Europe continues to grow, the number of exits in the continent is also increasing. 

This year has already seen some notable acquisitions, including Etsy’s $1.6 billion purchase of U.K. fashion resale app Depop and JPMorgan’s takeover of London robo-advisor Nutmeg.

As for stock market listings, a number of notable debuts have taken place in London in particular, including food delivery app Deliveroo, cybersecurity firm Darktrace and reviews site Trustpilot. Money transfer giant Wise, formerly known as TransferWise, plans to go public in the U.K. capital soon.

 

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