Hashtag trending Nov. 17 – Amazon fined; homebuyers keen on internet; U.S. government rejects making chips in China

*With files from Jori Negin-Schecter*

Amazon fined $500,000 for hiding Covid numbers, homebuyers are prioritizing good internet, and the U.S. Government takes exception to Intel manufacturing in China.

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That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now, welcome to Hashtag Trending! It’s Wednesday, November 17, and I’m your host, Tom Li.

Amazon will be forced to pay $500,000 to the state of California after they reportedly “Concealed COVID-19 case numbers from its workers”. According to an article from The Los Angeles Times, the ruling came down on Monday, and became the first action under the state’s new “right to know” law, meant to improve workplace safety. In addition to the fine, Amazon will be responsible moving forward for letting warehouse employees know when new cases arise within one day, and must also disclose the number of cases in their workplace. While the fine is ultimately minuscule relative to the giant corporation that is Amazon, the fine is nevertheless amongst the largest handed out by the state during the course of the pandemic.

A study from research group Omdia has found that a fast internet connection is now among the most important factors for homebuyers according to an article from the BBC. The study, which surveyed nearly 300 real estate agents in the U.K., found that questions about “full fibre” broadband are up nearly 70% since March 2020. Additionally, the study found that internet connectivity trails only home size in terms of importance to homebuyers. The magic number, according to the research team, appears to be 300Mbps, which approximately a third of home buyers are actively seeking. Nearly a quarter of homebuyers are aiming even higher as well, reportedly hoping for 1Gbps internet speeds. Focus on internet quality has understandably been sharpened over the course of the pandemic with dramatic increases in work from home.

Finally, the U.S. Government has reportedly rejected a deal that would see Intel produce more silicon wafers in China amidst the global chip shortage. According to an article from PC Gamer, Intel planned to have a factory up and running by late 2022. Simultaneously, Intel has been seeking federal assistance from the United States in an effort to increase production. U.S. President Joe Biden reportedly advised strongly against Intel’s attempt to use a factor in the Chinese city of Chengdu, in part for a push to manufacturing more locally as well as security concerns. The United States has also promised to invest more into the research and manufacturing of silicon on U.S. soil with the CHIPS act, which would see over $50bn invested as a means to remain competitive with China.

And now for something a little bit different. A new electric car dubbed the INDI One, revealed at the Automobility LA event today, features a multitude of fascinating features, most notably an integrated computer capable of high-end gaming. Some of the car’s other features, according to an article from TechRepublic, will include a complete Windows workstation, VR capabilities, and perhaps most absurdly, “Multiple interior and exterior cameras for live streaming videos, and shooting, editing and uploading content”. The car is set to emerge on the back of President Biden’s Infrastructure bill, which will see a significant level of investment in Electric Vehicles and EV infrastructure. That includes a $7.5bn investment into projects such as fast-charging stations, which would ideally result in more stations distributed evenly across the United States.

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 Briefing 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. If you have a suggestion or tip, please drop us a line in the comments or via email. Thanks for listening, I’m Tom Li.

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Tom Li
Tom Li
Telecommunication and consumer hardware are Tom's main beats at Channel Daily News. He loves to talk about Canada's network infrastructure, semiconductor products, and of course, anything hot and new in the consumer technology space. You'll also occasionally see his name appended to articles on cloud, security, and SaaS-related news. If you're ever up for a lengthy discussion about the nuances of each of the above sectors or have an upcoming product that people will love, feel free to drop him a line at [email protected].

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