Apple Is Reportedly Planning to Use In-House Chips in iPhones by 2025 and Microsoft Unveiled Voice Mimicking AI Technology in This Week’s Tech Roundup
A retired NASA satellite also returned to Earth after 38 years in space.
This week, the tech industry got a break from the ongoing saga of news surrounding Elon Musk, or more recently, disgraced crypto billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried. The news cycle was led by the launch of new products, including a STEM Projector from Kano Computing, makers of the infamous STEM Player.
Apple, meanwhile, may be acting on its long-rumored plan to replace its current iPhone chips with versions manufactured in-house, according to Bloomberg. And over at Microsoft, researchers have shared a new AI model called VALL-E that boasts the ability to replicate anyone’s voice based on a 3-second audio sample.
Below, HYPEBEAST has rounded up the top tech stories of the week so you can stay up to date on trends in the industry.
PC Shipments Experienced the Steepest Decline Ever in the Last Quarter
Over the last quarter, PC shipments experienced their largest drop in history, falling more than 28% year-to-year. The problem traces back to the PC boom in 2020 during the early days of the pandemic when people first began transitioning to remote work. Since then, however, a worsened global economy leaves consumers with less money to spend on computers and companies with a surplus of inventory.
Dell, HP and Lenovo were listed as some of the companies hit the hardest, according to analysis firm Gartner. Apple, meanwhile, fared surprisingly well and experienced just a 10% decline in shipments from the previous year.
Microsoft Unveiled New AI Technology that Can Mimic Anyone’s Voice Based on a 3-Second Sample
Researchers at Microsoft have launched a new AI model that claims to be able to replicate anyone’s voice based on just a 3-second audio clip. The program, called VALL-E, was trained using the voices of 7,000 different English speakers, sourced from Meta’s Libri-Light library. The AI consumed 60,000 hours of audio to fine-hone its abilities.
While some VALL-E-produced voices sound extremely realistic, others, such as those attempting to replicate heavy accents, don’t quite match up to the task at hand
Movie Viewers Can Now Summon a Cinema Anywhere With the STEM PROJECTOR
Kano Computing, the company responsible for the STEM Player, has returned with a new puck-shaped piece of hardware. The STEM Projector is a pocket-sized device enabling users to “summon a cinema, anywhere,” per its tagline.
Compatible with AirPlay and Chromecast, the device comes preloaded with a curated list of movies and activates at just the touch of a button. It also features built-in speakers and can be hooked up to an external sound source via audio jack, Bluetooth, Mini HDMI or over WiFi. The STEM Projector is priced at $1,000 USD and will launch in a limited run of 1,000 units.
Apple Reportedly has plans to Use In-House Chips in iPhones by 2025
Apple is still planning to utilize chips manufactured in-house in its iPhone lines in the future, according to a new report from Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman. The company is allegedly aiming to replace its current Qualcomm chips with a new cellular modem chip by late 2024 or early 2025. The move would allow Apple to save money on outsourcing component production but would deliver a major hit to Qualcomm, as well as Broadcom, which provides a chip that handles WiFi and Bluetooth capabilities.
Retired NASA Satellite Returns to Earth After 38 Years in Space
A NASA satellite has arrived back on Earth nearly four decades after it was launched into space. The Earth Radiation Budget Satellite (ERBS) was released into orbit in 1984 by astronaut Sally Ride as part of a research mission to gather data on the energy the Sun provides to Earth and the changing conditions of the stratosphere.
ERBS halted functions in 2005 and has simply been floating around space since then. The 5,400 lb (2,449 kg) satellite reentered Earth’s atmosphere earlier this week, arriving over the Bering Sea.