Microsoft purchases Havok Software from Intel
Microsoft has purchased Ireland-based Havok Software. Havok's real-time 3D physics software technology can be found in over 600 games titles including blockbusters like Halo, The Elder Scrolls, Assassin’s Creed, Call of Duty, Uncharted, and Dead Rising. Special effects using Havok technology have featured in films such as World War Z, Harry Potter, James Bond, and The Matrix. The terms of the deal between Intel and purchaser, Microsoft, were not disclosed.
As part of Microsoft, Havok will work to enhance development tools and platforms including DirectX 12, Visual Studio and Microsoft Azure. A couple of months ago Havok announced a new visual effects product, called Havok FX. This tech is said to make effects such as particle, dust, shrapnel, and smoke more CPU-friendly. Havok FX is aimed at current generation game platforms like Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC. One of the first games to feature Havok FX is Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege, coming later this month to PS4, Xbox One, and PC.
Overall it looks like a solid acquisition for Microsoft with its PC and Xbox games businesses and upcoming HoloLens VR products.
Micron Technology buys Tidal Systems
Micron Technology has purchased Tidal Systems, a startup company which develops controllers for solid state drives. This move, to vertically integrate its SSD business, should make Micron more competitive against the likes of Samsung and Toshiba.
According to Tom's Hardware, Tidal's Low Density Parity Check (LDPC) technology will be a key advantage going forward. Very few controllers are said to have such technology now and as NAND developers reduce the process size and introduce more bits per cell this advanced error correction technology looks a promising solution for reliability and durability.
Producing its own controllers could allow Micron to deliver well tuned SSDs to the market faster. Overall this looks like a good investment to vertically integrate important component development and help keep Micron SSDs competitive and cutting edge.