In hard times, it’s fair to say that some consumers cut back on electronic gadgets. And in response, a number of traditionally healthy companies, nervous about falling profits, have announced drastic moves. Microsoft, for one, started its largest mass layoff ever, cutting 5,000 jobs over the next 18 months. The company’s second quarter results showed an 11 percent drop in profits–something that can be explained, in part, by a sharp drop in sales of its Windows operating system.
But Microsoft isn’t the only one. Intel, maker of the chips inside those now dispensable gadgets, suffered its worst quarter in 25 years, prompting the company to lay off at least 5,000 employees. Sony, maker of televisions, cameras, and the PlayStation 3 video-game console, expects to post an operating loss of $3 billion. LG Electronics, manufacturer of cell phones, reported a loss of $500 million. Samsung Electronics is expected to post its first quarterly loss ever.
And even the sale of used and overstocked goods, which can appeal to consumers in a bad economy, isn’t helping matters at eBay. The auction site announced a 31 percent drop in profits.
How Facebook and Google fund global misinformation
The tech giants are paying millions of dollars to the operators of clickbait pages, bankrolling the deterioration of information ecosystems around the world.
DeepMind says it will release the structure of every protein known to science
The company has already used its protein-folding AI, AlphaFold, to generate structures for the human proteome, as well as yeast, fruit flies, mice, and more.
Inside the machine that saved Moore’s Law
The Dutch firm ASML spent $9 billion and 17 years developing a way to keep making denser computer chips.
This is what happens when you see the face of someone you love
The moment we recognize someone, a lot happens all at once. We aren’t aware of any of it.
Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review
Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.