Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Cyclops Electronics has a new website!

We are very excited to announce the launch of our fantastic new website!
Our new site looks great, works better than ever and has a host of features to make finding your electronic components simple and easy:
The new website is easy to navigate and contains loads of great information about the company and the services we can offer you. Take a look for yourself and let us know what you think:


Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Latest amendments to EU proposals on Conflict Minerals

The latest proposals and updates to the Conflict Mineral Regulations have been debated in the European Parliament. The majority of the initial proposals and most recent amendments were approved, however there was some debate over which businesses the Act should be concerned with. In its current state the regulations would only require EU based smelters and refiners to voluntarily get certified.

Some of the MEPs would prefer it if all importers of goods containing conflict minerals had to register under the scheme, not just smelters and refiners. There was also call from some members to make it a mandatory scheme rather than voluntary and even to apply it to other metals and minerals not just the currently established conflict minerals (Tin, Tungsten, Tantalum and Gold)

The current proposals for the regulations don't go as far as the Dodd – Frank bill which is the equivalent in the US. The American bill requires manufacturers to file a Conflict Minerals Report and are expected to exercise due diligence on the source of their conflict minerals. However, the EU proposals don't just focus on the Democratic Republic of Congo but also Columbia, Afghanistan and Myanmar amongst others.

The new amendments and draft bill will be voted for in May. Of course we will keep you up to date with what happens next. Just subscribe to the blog or follow us on Twitter.

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Fabulous results for semiconductor companies

The official sales results for the semiconductor industry are in and they are exceptionally great.
The total overall sales for 2014 is $340.3 billion, which has risen 7.9% from 2013!

 What is interesting, and even more good news, is that all device categories have seen some growth, not just a handful as occurred over the last few years. The memory market is still performing the best overall as it has grown 16.6%.

Intel are still top dog as they retain the number one market share position – and this is for an impressive 23 years in a row! Not only do they possess a 15.4% share of the overall market, they have grown 7.7% from 2013. Even with PC sales declining, Intel have still managed to perform incredibly. Samsung are chasing them down though, sticking in second place with a 10.2% share of the market. Having achieved some good sales with their own Galaxy smartphones and the excellent partnerships with Apple and Nvidia, they have managed to grow significantly more than Intel with a growth of 13.4%

The figures for the industry as a whole are heading in the right direction and this is fantastic news for every one of us in the semiconductor industry!

For a more in depth look at these results from Gartner, check out their report on their website here:

Keep up with all the news in our successful industry by subscribing to our blog, following us on Twitter or connecting on LinkedIn!

Thursday, 9 April 2015

EU Legislation – Conflict Minerals

Draft amendments were made to the EU legislation proposals last week and are due to be voted on early next week around the 13th-14th April. The amendments laid out by the European Commission include:
  • Still want a list of 'responsible' smelters and refiners but want to add provisions for recycled materials as they have already gone through a life cycle process
  • Want to add a list of responsible importers, as well as smelters and refiners
  • Commission to draw up the list of responsible importers
  • A 2 year transitional period wanted to allow the European Commission to set up a third part audit system
  • Any existing industry schemes which can be recognised as equivalent to the new requirements will still be allowed
  • The information on responsible refiners and smelters will be updated and published regularly, including being made available on the internet
Hopefully these proposals will be undertaken and the legislation will pass through quickly. Having a self certification system and a list of responsible smelters and refiners will help all of us who deal with Conflict Minerals.

For more information subscribe to our blog or you can find out more here.

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Happy Easter to you

Hopefully the Easter bunny will bring you lots of treats this weekend!

The Cyclops office will be closed over the Easter weekend from Friday 3rd April and reopen again on the 7th April at 8:45 (GMT)

Our website is available 24/7 for you to submit web reqs and enquiries. You can also keep up to date with all the latest news by following us on Twitter, liking us on Facebook or connecting on LinkedIn.
'Hoppy' Easter!

Happy Easter and enjoy the long weekend from all at Cyclops Electronics!!

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

More bad news for the PC industry

The global sales of PCs are set to fall even further this year if reports from researcher IDC are accurate. They have forecast that the worldwide shipments will drop by 4.9% and will lose 6.9% in money from $201 billion. By 2019 the market is expected to fall to $175 billion. The future's not looking too bright.

There are numerous reasons why the PC market is declining so much. Tablets and smartphones have been pushing into the market for a while now. Microsoft have also stated that many smaller businesses are slow or reluctant to upgrade old PCs. There is a case of if 'it's not broke, why fix it?' mentality. Replacing an entire office with brand new PCs can certainly add up and many SMEs will have other needs for such a large amount of money.

Intel have also blamed their recent low Q1 forecasts partly on low PC sales, particularly low demand for business PCs. They also blame low inventory levels across the PC supply chain as well as tough currency translations and challenging economic conditions, particularly in Europe.

Both Intel and Microsoft have big launches out later in the year with Windows 10 and a new processor respectively and it is hoped that these will drive interest in PCs to avoid the downturn that has been predicted.

Unfortunately the industry will need more than a couple of flashy product launches to really begin picking up. Companies will need to investigate ways of getting people to upgrade and to get excited about PCs again. With the functionality of a PC in our pockets, but with added freedom and flexibility, it is easy to see why people are choosing the ease of smartphones and tablets over PCs. The challenge will be in getting us happy to be chained to a desk again - and that is a very difficult challenge indeed.

Cyclops Electronics will keep you up to date with all the latest industry news and top stories. Just subscribe to our blog or follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.


Friday, 20 March 2015

Conflict Minerals – Proposed EU Regulations

The subject of conflict minerals has been long discussed in Europe and we are now moving forward to some proposed regulations coming into force by the end of the year. Here is a quick recap of what has happened previously and where we are at now:

A report published in September 2013 by a coalition of 59 civil society organisations called for the European Commission to pass a law "to prevent European businesses fuelling conflict and human rights abuses through their purchases of natural resources, such as tin, gold and diamonds."

The EU undertook a public consultation in March & June 2013 which led to further in depth consultations and an impact assessment of regulation on conflict minerals.

February 2014 saw the European Parliament voting in favour of a report to create an EU regulation “requiring companies using and trading minerals...should...create a legally binding obligation for all upstream...and downstream companies...to undertake supply chain due diligence to identify and mitigate the risk of conflict financing and human rights abuse.” The report was welcomed and numerous civil society groups urged the European Commission to follow the recommendations.

The European Commission announced a proposal in March 2014 regarding setting up an EU system of self-certification for importers of tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold. The legislation would regulate the importation of conflict minerals into the EU and would set up a voluntary self-certification process for importers of conflict minerals.

The proposal was initially debated in February 2015 with broad support for the regulations as a whole. Some suggestions were made including:
  • Companies should be incentivised to comply with the self-certification system.
  • A list of responsible importers should be drawn up and maintained by member states and the European Commission
  • SMEs should be protected in the process and offered assistance so they can comply with the new system
Amendments will be formally proposed and debated yesterday on March 19th with a draft report to be voted on in April.
Of course, Cyclops will let you know of any further developments, including the outcome of the debate on the 19th as soon as possible! Be the first to know by subscribing to our blog, following us on Twitter or connecting on Facebook.