Softbank to Acquire Chip Designer ARM in $32.2 Billion All-Cash Deal

By eWEEK Staff  |  Posted 2016-07-19 Print this article Print

DAILY VIDEO: Softbank deal to buy ARM aimed at bolstering its IoT reach; the hacking of Ubuntu Linux forums: lessons learned; will Microsoft promos move the needle on Windows 10 Adoption?; and there's more.

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Read more about the stories in today's news:


Today's topics include Softbank’s $32.2 billion buyout of mobile chip designer ARM Holdings, the hack of Ubuntu Linux forums that exposed millions of emails, Microsoft's latest effort to win over Windows 10 adoption holdouts and Avaya and FatPipe's collaboration to become the first pre-integrated SDN and SD-WAN enterprise system.

Japanese telecommunications investment company Softbank Group is acquiring British microchip design firm ARM Holdings for about $32.2 billion in a deal that aims to expand ARM's push into the Internet of things around the world.

Under the deal, announced July 18, Softbank will pay about $22.70 per share for ARM stock. The boards of both companies said they have reached an agreement for the all-cash transaction, which does not require antitrust or regulatory approvals.

Softbank also said that ARM will continue with its existing executive management team and brands. It will remain an independent business based at its Cambridge, England, headquarters as the acquisition moves forward.

Ubuntu Linux is one of the most popular Linux distributions in use today, making its users an attractive target for hackers.

In an attack that was officially confirmed on July 15, Canonical, the lead commercial vendor behind Ubuntu Linux, revealed that its Ubuntu Forums user community was hacked and the attacker gained unauthorized access to a database of 2 million users.

Although an attacker was able to gain access to the user database, the access was somewhat limited and didn't directly expose any valid user passwords, according to Canonical CEO Jane Silber.

With the Windows 10 free upgrade offer expiring on July 29, Microsoft is trying to encourage holdouts with some last-minute perks.

The company has launched a Windows 10 Upgrade Challenge program at its brick-and-mortar stores, offering customers a free Dell laptop if Microsoft staffers fail to complete a same-day Windows 10 upgrade on compatible systems.

"If your PC meets all of the requirements, our team will upgrade your PC to Windows 10. If we don't upgrade your PC by close of business, you'll get a free Dell Inspiron 15," states the program's Web page.

Ensuring that Microsoft Store technicians have plenty of time to complete the upgrade, customers must check in their PCs by noon local time at participating locations.

Customers whose PCs aren't compatible with Windows 10 will receive a $150 credit that can be used to purchase a new PC. Additionally, Microsoft is also offering new Windows 10 buyers $20 off the price of an Office 365 Home subscription.

Avaya and FatPipe Networks revealed July 18 that they will combine their expertise to build data center software-defined networking and software-defined WAN packages into a single system for networking and unified communications.

The two companies in a joint statement claimed that this will become the first pre-integrated SDN and SD-WAN enterprise offering of its kind. Most deployments like this are assembled as needed on an ad-hoc basis within IT departments.

The company's products are used for secured Internet access, e-commerce strategies, virtual private networks, voice over Internet Protocol, and site-to-site failover for business continuity.


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