Hashtag Trending May 3 – HP disables subscription ink; Microsoft Edge VPN; India’s first semiconductor fab

HP disables printer cartridges if you opt out of its subscription program, Microsoft is planning a VPN service in Edge, and India will build its first semiconductor fabrication plant.

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That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now, welcome to Hashtag Trending. It’s Tuesday, May 3, and I’m your host, Samira Balsara.

HP printer users subscribed to HP’s Instant Ink program may not be too pleased to know that their ink cartridges will be disabled if they opt out of the subscription, even if they still contain ink. Once enrolled, the HP ink subscription program will remotely monitor the printer’s ink levels and send refills if they run low. While this adds convenience, HP buried the condition that the cartridge will be disabled if the customer cancels in its 8,000 word terms and conditions agreement. Once the customer cancels, they’ll have to replace the special toner with regular, non-monitored cartridges. According to Money Mail, HP’s ink subscription has around 10 million subscribers.

The Microsoft Edge browser may soon get a built-in virtual private network service, or VPN for short. According to XDA Developers, a support page on Microsoft’s website mentioned a feature called Microsoft Edge Secure Network that offers encryption and stops data tracking. Tests of the feature in the latest Dev channel build revealed that it functions similarly to a VPN, which not only provides encryption, but also masks the user’s location. The catch is that there appears to be a limit to free users. Every Microsoft account gets 1GB for free and Microsoft will likely charge for extra data. This feature is still under development and testing, so the final feature set and pay structure has yet to be determined.

The International Semiconductor Consortium will invest $3 billion in building India’s first semiconductor fabrication facility. Reuters reports that the new fabrication plant will bring 1,500 direct jobs and 10,000 indirect jobs to India. On Friday, India’s IT ministers said that they want to position the country as a key player in the global chip market. Moreover, the Indian government wants to attract more investment and quality talents. The country’s semiconductor market is set to grow to $63 billion by 2026, more than quadruple its value in 2020. 

Gaming peripheral company Razer is going private once again. The deal would see Razer purchase all outstanding shares and consolidate the leadership under Razer founder Min-Liang Tang. The deal puts the company value at US$3.17 billion, or approximately US$0.36 per share, representing a 44 per cent premium over the company’s closing price in October before its trading halt. Despite the company’s impressive 33 per cent revenue growth, it warned its investors to taper expectations due to uncertainties and challenges. An overwhelming majority of shareholders have already unapproved the deal. 

That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now. Hashtag Trending is a part of the ITWC Podcast network. Add us to your Alexa Flash briefings or your Google Home daily briefing. Make sure to sign up for our Daily IT Wire newsletter to get all the news that matters directly in your inbox every day. Also, catch the next episode of Hashtag Tendances, our weekly Hashtag Trending episode in French, which drops every Thursday morning. If you have a suggestion or a tip, drop us a line in the comments or via email. Thank you for listening, I’m Samira Balsara.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Samira Balsara
Samira Balsara
Samira is a writer for IT World Canada. She is currently pursuing a journalism degree at Toronto Metropolitan University (formally known as Ryerson) and hopes to become a news anchor or write journalistic profiles. You can email her at sbalsara@itwc.ca

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