Microsoft proposes new Activision takeover deal | Supply chain shortages delay AI boom
Microsoft proposes new Activision takeover deal to UK regulator after initial block
Microsoft first put forward its $69 billion proposal to acquire US gaming company Activision Blizzard in January 2022 but since faced several regulatory hurdles from US, Europe and the UK. Seven months later, though the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority confirmed it has blocked the initial deal, the pair have agreed to a new pact which the CMA will now investigate.
Under the restructured deal, Microsoft won’t acquire cloud rights for existing Activision PC and console games, or for new games released by Activision during the next 15 years, the CMA said.
The new proposal will see Microsoft sell off the streaming rights for Call of Duty, Overwatch, and other IP to rival games publisher Ubisoft.
The CMA have set a deadline for October 18 to come to a decision.
Meta teases web version of Threads launch to compete with X
Threads first launched on July 5 as an alternative to Musk’s social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter. After succeeding hot-off-the-mark with 100 million users in just five days, in just over a month its daily active users plummeted to 10.3m.
In a bid to regain the attention of users, particularly brands, companies, advertisers and journalists, Threads is set to roll out a new web version.
“We are close on web…,” said Instagram head Adam Mosseri in a post on Threads on Friday. According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, the launch could happen as early as this week.
Supply chain shortages delay tech sector’s AI boom
Investors are calculating whether the big appetite for artificial intelligence (AI) products can offset the decline in global sales for computer hardware.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), the exclusive producer of chip-maker Nvidia’s processors, said that while Nvidia can expect nearly 50% annual growth in demand for AI server chips over the next five years, pressures caused by the global tech slump from the economic downturn are unlikely to wane.
Nvidia plans to triple the production of its top H100 AI processor in 2024 to meet this demand, however as buyers redirect their investments to AI infrastructure, the appetite for Nvidia’s chips is causing supply shortages in the broader computing equipment market.
Electronics manufacturer Foxconn and computer maker Lenovo both predict an overall decline in server revenues due to shortages of AI processors. The supply chain bottleneck is not expected to be resolved until the end of 2024.
India to expand digital payments with AI-powered voice transactions
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI), the country’s central bank, has announced its intention to deliver a system powered by AI that can complete transactions in a safe and secure environment through voice commands. The system is to be made available to the 300 million users of India’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI), an instant payment system which the RBI says has transformed the digital payment ecosystem in India.
The system is able to facilitate both C2C and C2B transactions. It will initially be available in Hindi and English, with more Indian languages expected to be added in the future.
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