Two interesting snapshots of the semiconductor business I make my living in
1) $3.9bn investment in Texas-based fabs by Samsung: http://news.cnet.com/8301-1001_3-57560195-92/samsung-takes-step-forward-in-$3.9b-chip-effort-in-texas/
...contrasted with the news Texas Instruments will pull out of France, where their OMAP software engineering (used in eg, Kindle Fire) was based with the loss of 500 jobs and another 1200 jobs gone in the US and worldwide as it gives up competing in smartphone / tablet market http://seattletimes.com/html/businesstechnology/2019927679_apeufrancetexasinstruments.html
...the Texas / Texas angle is hard to miss...
2) Two Apple smartphone patents recently have been disallowed by the US Patent Office... these were being used as big sticks by Apple to extract royalties from the weaker players like HTC (which seems doomed somehow, despite doing a good job). HTC also was the first to fold and agree to pay per-handset royalties to Microsoft for their Android phones.
That's interesting because these are claims by Apple that they originated and were first to imagine these innovations: they're around pinch-to-zoom and other touchscreen-related claims. But they flat out lied, they were not first to make these innovations. HTC is still paying royalties on these busted claims presumably and Apple makes like a dowager whose propriety has been questioned when claiming more than $1bn from Samsung on the basis of these claims - one of the patents in that case has now been rejected by the Patent Office as being any Apple innovation.
As we reach the end of the year and think about what 2013 may hold these two events seem portentous...