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Google and Arm are developing a new technology to mitigate against memory vulnerabilities in Android

According to Google, more than half of the highest priority security vulnerabilities faced by Android 9 Pie have been due to memory safety bugs. New features in Android Q such as IntSan instrumentation are designed to mitigate against such problems, but there's only so much that can be achieved by software alone. Google has therefore teamed up with chip-maker Arm to develop a new hardware feature called the memory tagging extension (MTE).

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[Update: Chip supplier not worried] Future of Huawei’s Kirin chips threatened as ARM ceases working relationship with the company

Just a few days after the US added Huawei to its "Entity List," things are continuing to go south for the Chinese manufacturer. The demise began with Google announcing it would put an end to its partnership with the company, and continued with major chip manufacturers blacklisting it. Although Huawei is trying to mitigate the first issue by working on an in-house operating system, hardware related bans are much more complex to overcome. To make things worse, ARM has just asked its employees to stop working with the Chinese tech giant, which puts the company's Kirin chips at risk.

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Samsung announces Exynos 9820 with dedicated AI core and three CPU clusters

Samsung might use Qualcomm chips in most of its North American phones, but everyone else gets the company's custom Exynos chips. The last-gen Exynos 9810 had some issues, but Samsung aims to rectify that with a substantial redesign of the new 9820. It's still using custom CPU cores alongside low-power ARM reference designs, but there's a third cluster of high-power ARM cores as well.

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ARM's new A76 CPU core could make your next smartphone a lot faster

ARM unveiled its brand-new A76 CPU design at an event in San Francisco today, and while it may not be in your next smartphone, there's a good chance it'll be in the one after that. And it's going to make it a fair bit faster - around 35% faster than ARM's current top-of-the-line core.

If you're not familiar, ARM is the company behind the CPU instruction set used in essentially every modern smartphone (and yes, that includes the iPhone), and it's also behind the core CPU designs used in the vast majority of them. That includes chips made like Qualcomm's Snapdragon 845, with a high-performance processor that is essentially a slight tweak on ARM's current A75 design.

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Latest Spectre variant affects x86 and ARM CPUs

Spectre and Meltdown are still fresh in our mind, but already researchers from Microsoft and Google have found a new vulnerability, named Speculative Store Bypass (SSB), that could allow for malicious software to indirectly read from memory. Some Intel and AMD processors are vulnerable, but of greater Android-related concern is the susceptibility of 5 ARM reference designs going back to 2011's Cortex-A15 and including the latest A75.

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[Update: Live now] NVIDIA prepping Spectre vulnerability patch for SHIELD Tablet

NVIDIA launched the SHIELD Tablet way back in the summer of 2014. Most device makers would have long since abandoned a tablet from that era, but NVIDIA has kept it reasonably up-to-date. The tablet is running Nougat and got the KRACK patch late last year. Now, NVIDIA says it's working on a new patch to address the recent spate of CPU vulnerabilities.

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ARM announces Mali-G52 and G31 GPU designs, bringing AI performance benefits and Vulkan to the low-end

Today ARM has announced its new Mali G52 and G31 GPU designs, respectively targeting so-called "mainstream" and high-efficiency applications. The bigger G52 will someday make its way into more demanding use cases like TVs and high-end phones, where its 3.6x performance improvements in machine learning/AI workloads can be appreciated, while the G31 brings ARM's Bifrost architecture, Vulkan and all, to a more affordable level. 

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ARM announces 'iSIM' technology for embedded devices

SIM cards are great for consumers, as they make it easy to switch to a new phone (or a new carrier). But they're not ideal for embedded devices or enterprise use, where switching networks would be a massive pain. eSIM, a rewritable (but non-removable) card inside the device, is one solution to this problem. Google's Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL were the first phones to support eSIM, and some smartwatches (like the Apple Watch 3 and ZTE Quartz) use it.

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'Spectre' and 'Meltdown' CPU vulnerabilities become public, most Google products already protected

A report from The Register yesterday claimed that Windows and Linux developers were scrambling to fix a "fundamental design flaw in Intel's processor chips." The flaw theoretically allows any program to view the layout or contents of protected kernel memory areas, which often contain passwords, login keys, cached files, and other sensitive data. Even a web app could potentially read kernel-protected data.

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ARM announces new display technologies to improve VR and HDR

If you've got an Android device, outside of a few exceptions, the odds are that it's powered by an ARM processor. Companies like Qualcomm, Apple, and Samsung license the company's tech, so when ARM improves something, we all benefit. Today ARM is announcing some new display technologies which the company alleges can deliver an HDR experience on any screen, while providing increased power savings and performance for applications such as VR. 

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