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Nokia, Kyndryl extend partnership for private 5G factory networks

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Nokia (NOKIA.HE) and Kyndryl (KD.N) have extended their partnership for three years after clocking up more than 100 customers for automating factories using 5G wireless networks, following their first tie-up a year earlier. Big technology firms have been partnering with telecom gear makers such as Nokia to sell private 5G networks to customers, mostly in the manufacturing business, but only a few companies have been able to get any traction in the business that is expected to grow by billions of dollars every year. "We grew the business significantly last year with the number of customers and number of networks," Chris Johnson, head of Nokia's enterprise business, told Reuters. The companies said some customers were now coming back to put private networks into more of their factories after the initial one. In Dow Chemical's petrochemical processing plant in Texas, the private wireless network increased worker safety, enabled remote audio and video collaboration, personnel tracking, and vehicle telematics, the companies said. Dow is now planning to expand the same coverage to dozens of its factories, said Paul Savill, Kyndryl's global practice leader. "Our pipeline has been growing fundamentally faster than it has been in the last 12 months," he said. “We now have over 100 customers that we're working with in the private wireless space … in around 24 different countries.” After getting spun off from IBM (IBM.N) in 2021, Kyndryl has focused on building its wireless network business and has signed several agreements with cloud providers. The size of the global private 5G network market is expected to reach $41.02 billion by 2030 from 1.38 billion in 2021, according to a study by Grand View Research. The companies have also developed automated industrial drones that can monitor a site with different kinds of sensors such as identifying chemicals and video recognition as part of surveillance. While drones have not yet been deployed commercially yet, customers are showing interest in rugged, industrialised non-stop automated drone surveillance, Johnson said.

Nokia (NOKIA.HE) and Kyndryl (KD.N) have extended their partnership for three years after clocking up more than 100 customers for automating factories using 5G wireless networks, following their first tie-up a year earlier.

Big technology firms have been partnering with telecom gear makers such as Nokia to sell private 5G networks to customers, mostly in the manufacturing business, but only a few companies have been able to get any traction in the business that is expected to grow by billions of dollars every year.

“We grew the business significantly last year with the number of customers and number of networks,” Chris Johnson, head of Nokia’s enterprise business, told Reuters.

The companies said some customers were now coming back to put private networks into more of their factories after the initial one.

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In Dow Chemical’s petrochemical processing plant in Texas, the private wireless network increased worker safety, enabled remote audio and video collaboration, personnel tracking, and vehicle telematics, the companies said.

Dow is now planning to expand the same coverage to dozens of its factories, said Paul Savill, Kyndryl’s global practice leader.

“Our pipeline has been growing fundamentally faster than it has been in the last 12 months,” he said. “We now have over 100 customers that we’re working with in the private wireless space … in around 24 different countries.”

After getting spun off from IBM (IBM.N) in 2021, Kyndryl has focused on building its wireless network business and has signed several agreements with cloud providers.

The size of the global private 5G network market is expected to reach $41.02 billion by 2030 from 1.38 billion in 2021, according to a study by Grand View Research.

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The companies have also developed automated industrial drones that can monitor a site with different kinds of sensors such as identifying chemicals and video recognition as part of surveillance.

While drones have not yet been deployed commercially yet, customers are showing interest in rugged, industrialised non-stop automated drone surveillance, Johnson said.

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Apple CEO says looking into possibility of building manufacturing facility in Indonesia

Apple CEO says looking into possibility of building manufacturing facility in Indonesia

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Apple CEO says looking into possibility of building manufacturing facility in Indonesia

Apple Inc will look into the possibility of building a manufacturing facility in Indonesia, its CEO said on Wednesday after meeting President Joko Widodo.

Apple CEO Tim Cook arrived in Jakarta on Tuesday, after visiting Vietnam. He met with Jokowi, as the president popularly known, and will be inaugurating an academy for Apple developers on the island of Bali.

“We talked about the president’s desire to see manufacturing in the country, and it is something that we will look at,” Cook told reporters after the meeting. 

Apple has based much of its key manufacturing of iPads, AirPods and Apple Watches in Vietnam and suppliers for MacBooks are also investing in the country.

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Apple has no manufacturing facilities in Indonesia but has established four Apple Developer Academies.

Indonesia has a huge tech-savvy population, making the Southeast Asian nation a key target market for tech-related investment.

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TikTok quizzed by EU on TikTok Lite launch in France, Spain

TikTok quizzed by EU on TikTok Lite launch in France, Spain

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TikTok quizzed by EU on TikTok Lite launch in France, Spain

ByteDance’s TikTok has been given 24 hours to provide a risk assessment on its new app TikTok Lite launched this month in France and Spain on concerns of its potential impact on children and users’ mental health, the European Commission said on Wednesday.

The move by EU industry chief Thierry Breton under EU tech rules known as the Digital Services Act (DSA) comes two months after he opened an investigation into TikTok over possible DSA breaches. 

The landmark DSA requires companies to do more to tackle illegal and harmful content on their platforms, with fines of up to 6% of their global annual turnover for violations.

The Commission on Wednesday said it had sent a request for information to TikTok, asking for more details on the risk assessment the social media company should have done before deploying TikTok Lite in the 27-country European Union.

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“This concerns the potential impact of the new ‘Task and Reward Lite’ programme on the protection of minors, as well as on the mental health of users, in particular in relation to the potential stimulation of addictive behaviour,” the EU executive said in a document seen by Reuters.

“TikTok must provide the risk assessment for TikTok Lite in 24 hours and the other requested information by 26 April 2024, after which the Commission will analyse TikTok’s reply, and then assess next steps.”

The Commission also asked for details on measures the company has put in place to mitigate systemic risks.

TikTok Lite, an app with a new functionality aimed at users aged 18+, was launched in France and Spain this month.

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SiTime introduces chip aimed at saving power in AI data centers

SiTime introduces chip aimed at saving power in AI data centers

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SiTime introduces chip aimed at saving power in AI data centers

SiTime (SITM.O) on Wednesday introduced a chip that it says is designed to help data centers built for artificial intelligence applications run more efficiently.

SiTime makes what are known as timing chips, whose job is set a steady beat for all the parts of a computer and keep them running together in sync, like a conductor in an orchestra directing multiple groups of instruments. The company says its new line of chips, called Chorus, can do so with 10 times more precision than older styles of timing chips.

SiTime CEO Rajesh Vashist said the company aims to help customers save electricity with that precision. SiTime’s chips themselves require less than a watt of power, but powerful AI chips such as Nvidia’s (NVDA.O) require more than 1,000 watts of power.

With a more precise clock to keep all the elements of a computer in sync, parts of the machine can be turned off for a few milliseconds at a time when they are not in use. Over the multiple years a power-hungry data center server might be in use, it can generate energy savings, though the amount will depend on how SiTime’s chips are used.

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“We deliver timing that they can rely on so that they can wake up their products and bring data more efficiently to them, rather than just running more often,” Vashist said in an interview.

SiTime said the chips will be available in the second half of this year.

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