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Winners and Losers: Nvidia and Arm raise concerns while Fitbit charges on

It’s time for Winners and Losers and this week hasn’t been short of good news. From our first glimpse at Netflix gaming to rumours of a larger smartwatch and a high-end Mac Mini from Apple, there’s been plenty of positive updates to choose from.

Ultimately, this week’s winner has to be Fitbit. The company launched the Charge 5 on Wednesday and it arrived with a decent amount of design upgrades and new features to get excited about.

Sadly, we also need to pick out a loser and this week that title goes to Nvidia, after a report emerged last weekend suggesting the company is having trouble with its multi-billion pound Arm acquisition.

Winner: Fitbit

This week’s winner is Fitbit, who unveiled its newest fitness tracker – the Fitbit Charge 5 – on Wednesday. 

Fitbit has historically updated its Charge series once every two years and the most recent iteration had come in the form of the Charge 4 in 2020. This meant that, though we’d heard rumours the fitness tracker would be coming early, we originally didn’t expect the Charge 5 to land until 2022. 

So, what features did the tracker bring to the Charge family other than an early launch date? 

Design-wise, the Charge 5 is slimmer than its predecessor and is the first in the Charge line to pack an always-on colour display, with older Charges carrying less flashy greyscale screens. 

The Charge 5 also steals two features that launched on the health-focused Fitbit Sense last year: the EDA sensor and the ECG app. The EDA Scan app allows users to keep an eye on their body temperature and perspiration to track stress levels, while the ECG app is used to flag atrial fibrillation (AFib) in the heart and share the results with your doctor. 

The final major feature announced alongside the Charge 5 was Daily Readiness. The Fitbit Premium-exclusive studies a user’s fitness fatigue, heart rate variability and sleep and offers tailored recommendations, including what workouts to complete next and a new Active Zone Minutes goal. 

The Charge 5 also packs many of the fitness tracking and smartwatch features we saw on the Charge 4 – which isn’t necessarily a bad thing when the wearable currently has a place on our best fitness trackers list.

We’re excited to see how the Charge 5 performs when it reaches users later this year.

What is a GPU

Loser: Nvidia 

Unfortunately, this week delivered less exciting news for Nvidia as the company’s Arm acquisition found itself placed under scrutiny by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) here in the UK. 

According to a report by the BBC, the competition watchdog is requesting a more in-depth investigation into Nvidia’s £29 billion takeover of Arm due to concerns the deal could “stifle innovation” in the gaming and self-driving car markets, among other sectors. 

Right now, Arm supplies semiconductor chips to a variety of tech brands, including Apple and Qualcomm. One major concern is that Nvidia could try to put a stop to this if the takeover is allowed to pass through. 

However, Nvidia has argued that the Arm acquisition would actually benefit Arm, licensees and competition in the UK and has reportedly offered to “resolve any concerns” the government has about the takeover. 

The acquisition could now be subject to a “phase 2” investigation, which would raise the chances of Nvidia being prevented from buying Arm altogether, according to the BBC.

We’ll have to wait and see whether the CMA chooses to proceed to the next phase of the investigation, but if the takeover continues it could mean some huge changes for the tech companies that currently rely on the Arm chips and architecture.

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