Apple graphics partner gets Intel cash
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The world economy may be in a tailspin and jobless rates worldwide may be rising to unprecedented heights, but there's one happy company that's raising cash and beefing up its staff size: Imagination Technologies.
As we reported last week, Apple recently spent $4.8m of its $25bn in cash reserves to acquire 8.2 million shares of the British designer of graphics and video chips for mobile devices. Intel - never one to miss a golden opportunity - apparently concurred with Apple's money men and late last week increased their own Imagination holdings by 934,422 shares, adding to the 6 million they acquired in October of 2006 when they licensed Imagination's graphics cores to supplement their Atom mobile microprocessor.
Interestingly, Apple's stock purchase was far more favorable financially than Intel's original buy-in, considering that Apple paid 39 pence per share last week, while Intel paid 88 pence per share in 2006 for a total of £5.28m ($7.88m in today's dollars).
But what's a few million among business partners? Imagination is a rising star among chip designers, with its hot-selling PowerVR MBX technology powering the iPhone and iPod Touch, and its indisputably hotter PowerVR SGX GPU and PowerVR VXD Video Decoder presumably poised to power the next generation of Apple mobile devices and Intel Atom-based platforms.
Imagination Technologies isn't merely spending its Apple and Intel booty on celebratory eggnog this holiday season, however. They're instead bucking the layoff trend and investing in new engineers. In the "PowerVR Software" section of their Careers webpage you can now find postings for six positions that fit quite nicely into Apple's OpenCL plans for Mac OS X 10.6, Snow Leopard - three of which specifically reference the OpenGL ES open-source standard (two for OpenGL ES Graphics Driver Design Engineers and one for a OpenGL ES Graphics Senior Driver Design Engineer). We can only assume that there's no coincidence that the PowerVR SGX GPU is compatible with the latest version of that standard, OpenCL ES 2.0, which adds programmable 3D graphics to the PowerVR's powers.
So if you happen to be one of the many who are either fearing or recovering from a layoff from HP, Yahoo!, Nvidia, or some other struggling tech firm, you might want to point Google Maps towards Kings Langley, Hertfordshire UK, Imagination's home. We hear that there are still tickets available for Jack and the Beanstalk in nearby Stevenage - it's "Fee-Fi-Fo-Fun!" ®
Agree with your location comments. So many technology companies put their R&D operations in blandsville towns where the rates are cheap. Fair enough business sense.
However from a young employee's perspective this is very unsatisfactory: lack of amenities, cultural and social outlets offered by such locations. Such places might suit those a little older and settled bringing up families.
Contentedness derived from just intellectual stimulation in the job might not be enough and it's not surprising then that London appeals with lots more to do.
Though it's a shame about the superiority complex of London and that more investment in cultural and social offerings is not diverted into regional provinces.
.... for a decent PowerVR graphics card. It was always a smart technology, just never really had the power of the nVidia, Voodoo or ATi cards. With the new drive to more power-efficient graphics cards you'd think a good PowerVR-based card was long overdue.
Just kinda wondering if Apple make a DAB radio yet, what with those being a significant source of revenue for Imagination Technology. Another Imag'Tech development I read of a while back is a satnav combined with 3d imaging, so basically you can see a picture of where you are & where you should turn next. I think it was meant to be due out in Japan first.
Oh, before anybody gets too excited about this & over-investing in this genuinely interesting firm, it might be worth checking their profit figures.
Alternatively, just jump on a train into London and go somewhere that isn't utterly shit
that's right, just jump on the train towards London, change and just keep going to somewhere that isn't shit and full of wankers...
"So if you happen to be one of the many who are either fearing or recovering from a layoff from HP, Yahoo!, Nvidia, or some other struggling tech firm, you might want to point Google Maps towards Kings Langley, Hertfordshire UK, Imagination's home. We hear that there are still tickets available for Jack and the Beanstalk in nearby Stevenage - it's "Fee-Fi-Fo-Fun!""
You'd be better off checking out the Red Lion in the Old Town - it's about the only place worth going to in Stevenage.
Alternatively, just jump on a train into London and go somewhere that isn't utterly shit - I've lived in Hertfordshire for five years and have yet to find anywhere worthwhile to hang out that, er, isn't in the Big Smoke.
Hope that helps any budding API engineers and graphics programmers looking at relocating!