Walmart e-commerce Way Up; Qualcomm 5G Chip-Better Battery Life; Google Gaming Press Event; Samsung Exits Blu-Ray

It was primarily fueled by their growing online grocery business, but Walmart’s e-commerce sales were up a whopping 43% in the 4th quarter of last year. Techcrunch.com reports that the retail giant brought in $138.8 billion, just exceeding the forecast of $138.76 billion. Walmart offers grocery pickup at over 2100 locations and delivery at nearly 800 around the country.

Qualcomm has revealed their latest modem chip, the Snapdragon X55. According to cnet.com, it will run on anything from 2G to 5G networks. At 5G, it can run between 10 and 100 times faster, AND it will give you more range and will be more power efficient…giving users better battery life! Qualcomm expects to ship the first 5G modems to partners later this year.

Twitch, which has been owned by Amazon for several years now, has been getting into Google’s drawers, syphoning off talent and users from YouTube. Now, theverge.com says Google is planning to hold a mysterious gaming-related event at the Game Developers Conference next month. They allude to a big reveal on March 19th at 10am Pacific. It’s already been widely reported that Google has been working on their Project Stream service the last 6 months…that allows gamers to stream games in their Chrome browser. With this announcement tease, it appears that Google may be getting set to roll out a full game streaming service.

It’s a small blow to Blu-ray, but not nearly a death blow. Samsung is exiting the business. Arstechnica.com reports that they really haven’t had a new player since 2017, and now will exit the business. Part of the reason may be that they are getting trounced by the competition…Samsung has stuck with HDR-10, while Sony and Panasonic have offered Dolby Vision HDR support. At the esoteric level, home theatre enthusiasts adore Dolby Vision, because it allows a more finely tuned, beautiful picture. Sony and Panasonic plan to keep building Blu-rays, which are still selling fine (and they have had the lion’s share of the market, leaving Samsung with the scraps.) Of course, Playstation 4 and Xbox One consoles also play Blu-ray, so don’t expect the format to disappear overnight, despite the popularity of streaming.

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