India is one of the most important markets for Google with Android phones enjoying more than 95% of the market share in the country. It’s not just about the OS though. All Android phones come with a Google suite of pre-installed apps which means there are millions of users using Google services automatically.
It could be Chrome Browsing, Gmail for Email, or the Google Play Store for Applications. As a result of this rule, the Indian Competition Commission (CCI) has launched an investigation back in 2019 to find out Google’s role in blocking competitors. Two years later, we now have the findings of an investigation.
According to an investigation report reviewed by The Times of India, CCI said Google was guilty of using anti-competitive, unfair, and restrictive trading methods in connection with its smartphone OS and other related activities. Investigations have found that Google is guilty of pressuring competition in the Indian market by pressing its services and applications to capture a large user base.
With its popular services like Search, YouTube, Chrome, Google Play Store, etc., Google wanted to find a powerful place for what people are doing online in the country.
By forcing OEMs to first install these apps on all Android smartphones, Google wanted to ensure that users who bought a new smartphone would only use their apps and services automatically, which is why it created an environment that was not competitive and unfair to stakeholders.
The investigation also alleges that Google has imposed side-by-side contracts on both device makers and app developers who have denied market access to competitors. Google’s GMS Background is an integral part of all Android devices and this package includes a few Google apps that are the first to be installed when you buy a new Android phone. Google mandates OEMs to install this on all Android devices.
Google has even provided incentives to smartphone manufacturers by replacing the Google Dialer app with messages as default apps instead of the custom apps we’ve received before on most phones with a custom UI. The report also suggests how Google automatically integrates a search bar into the home screen as a widget, encouraging more people to use their search engine.
Note that this is only a finding of the report submitted to the CCI for consideration. The opposition party, South Africa, will be given the opportunity to present their side of the story and defend their practices before a decision is made. If found guilty, Google will have to pay a fine or stop these wrong practices, or both.
Phones will be banned in schools across New Zealand
New Zealand’s new Prime Minister Christopher Luxon announced that he would promote the ban on phones in primary and secondary schools across the country. This initiative aims to improve the quality of education for primary and secondary school students in New Zealand.
According to New Zealand education sources, the literacy skills of New Zealand primary and secondary school students have been declining in the past few years, and have even reached a “crisis” level. Over 1/3rd of the country’s 15-year-old students have poor literacy levels, which has aroused concern from all walks of life.
In order to solve this problem, New Zealand’s new Prime Minister Lacson decided to take action. Within 100 days after taking office, he push for the ban on mobile phones in primary and secondary schools across the country to reduce students’ distractions so they could concentrate on class.
Nintendo may use Samsung OLED display on its new console
Nintendo is in talks with Samsung Display for supply of the next-generation OLED panels, following Valve’s SteamDeck. Both companies initially considered China’s BOE as a supplier but changed way to Samsung due to the burden of the risk arising from the patent infringement lawsuit.
According to the report, Japan’s Nintendo is known to have requested the supply of OLED panels from Samsung Display, following Valve. These companies negotiated with China’s BOE to lower device prices, but it is said that they chose Samsung Display panels.
In June 2022, Samsung Display filed a patent infringement lawsuit against China’s BOE in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas. The technology that Samsung Display claims to be infringing on is five OLED display patents for all products released after the iPhone 12.
Last December, Samsung Display filed a complaint with the ITC against 17 US parts wholesalers to keep BOE in check, asking the ITC to stop using parts and panels that infringe on the company’s ‘Diamond Pixel’.
Accordingly, BOE filed a countersuit in Chongqing’s First Intermediate People’s Court in May against Samsung Display China and Samsung Elec China, claiming patent infringement.
Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 to be made by TSMC, for Galaxy by Samsung
Similar to the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, TSMC is exclusively producing Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset. While the new processor has just started to debut with smartphones, a new leak suggests that TSMC will continue to produce Snapdragon 8 Gen 4, while Samsung orders shelved until 2025.
According to tipster Revegnus, Qualcomm will rely solely on TSMC for producing the 3nm-based Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 processor in 2024. The company has reportedly decided to bet on Taiwanese chip manufacturer again as it’s aiming to use custom Oryon CPU cores.
It’s worth noting that a dual chip sourcing strategy is still on the cards for 2025 when the Snapdragon 8 Gen 5 comes out, while the Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 for Galaxy will be produced at Samsung’s foundry 3GAP, reports Taiwan’s TechNews.
In a multi-core scenario, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 is said to surpass 10,000 points on Geekbench 6, while the Adreno 830 GPU offers the same level of power draw as the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 while offering excellent performance gains. The whole SoC is rumored to consume just 8W.