|Day's Range||49.20 - 49.20|
Google is going to formally introduce the Pixel 4 smartphone at a Made by Google event in New York on Tuesday. Yahoo Finance tech editor Dan Howley joins Myles Udland and Heidi Chung to talk about the improvements being made to this phone as Google attempts to gain some ground on Apple and Samsung.
The Department of Justice has asked for more information on the planned Google-Looker deal to determine whether it could harm competition.
Microsoft’s 40% rally this year has been driven in no small measure by investor enthusiasm for the company’s Azure cloud business, which skewed to larger enterprises than its rivals and should be the least vulnerable to any macro-related slowdown, an analyst says.
Google stock advanced on Tuesday amid the unveiling of the Pixel 4 smartphone, which takes on the new Apple iPhone 11 and Samsung devices. Meanwhile, Apple stock slipped on the news.
Alphabet Inc.’s Google set itself up for the holidays Tuesday, announcing its new Pixel phones, a new Pixelbook, and various devices for the home.
DICK'S Sporting (DKS) witnesses strong momentum on efforts to build the best omni-channel platform as well as robust merchandising initiatives.
Earnings season begins in earnest on Tuesday, as JPMorgan Chase led the pack of banks reporting third-quarter results, and the numbers aren’t likely to be pretty. Strategists are saying profits for the Standard & Poor’s 500 (SPX) stock index will be down about 4% — not enough to push the U.S. into a recession, but enough to keep questions alive about whether the economy will generate much growth. The corollary to this is that investors should also take projections that corporate profits will rise 10% in 2020 with a grain of salt, CFRA Research strategist Sam Stovall says.
Google's Pixelbook Go and Pixel Buds are some of a slew of new hardware products the company debuted at its big event in New York.
NEW YORK/SAN FRANCISCO/BERLIN, Oct 15 (Reuters) - Alphabet Inc's Google unveiled new Pixel smartphones with higher quality cameras, a radar sensor to track hand gestures and faster virtual assistant on Tuesday, but the devices had no surprise features to set them apart from rivals and nix concerns about price. The Pixel 4 phones, in two sizes, headlined a New York press event at which Google also announced its first moderately priced laptop, first wireless earbuds and upgrades to its to well-reviewed Wifi router and burger-sized smart speaker. Google started developing hardware about four years ago, wagering that it could introduce artificial intelligence into devices faster and better than rivals and that consumers would clamor for such features.
CRM stock has lagged software group peers as investors digest a number of big industry acquisitions, such as Tableau. Could digital transformation growth drive a Salesforce stock rally?
France is pushing for the creation of a European-wide regulator of digital platforms such as Google to sanction possible abuse of power, a French presidency official said on Tuesday, citing a dispute over EU copyright law as an example. Google said last month it would stop showing news snippets from European publishers on search results for its French users to comply with a new European copyright law, prompting anger in Paris. "A big American company, Google namely, has announced it would not comply with an EU copyright directive," the official told reporters.
(Bloomberg) -- Facebook’s Portal does exactly what the company says: it serves as a high-end home camera for video conferencing. With an improved design, this year’s iteration better blends into home decors, and with a lower price, it’s attainable for a wider group of people. What it doesn’t do, however, is offer any reassurance that Facebook has finally solved the privacy worry trifecta of always-listening voice assistants, self-activating video cameras and its own tarnished history with user data.The new 10-inch device looks like a picture frame that could fit into a row of family photos on a mantelpiece. It can be situated in either portrait or landscape orientation, and its build quality is fine for a $179 device (there’s also an 8-inch Portal Mini for $129). The star attraction of this product line is its wide-angle video camera, which can automatically follow a person and zoom in on them as they move around a room during a chat. It neatly combines the unnerving and the magical aspects of technology, and if multiple people are present in the frame, the camera will move between them as they are talking and users can choose a person to focus on at any time.In calls, you can pin animated masks, such as a dragon, over users’ faces and also modify their voices. That’s one small step toward giving people more control over what representations of themselves they send over the internet. There are also options to share a book or listen to music together with the person on the other end of a call with the help of Spotify, Pandora or iHeartRadio. The integrated speaker sounds great for video chatting, but it isn’t likely to replace a dedicated music device.As a video chat tool, Portal works as advertised. But it’s difficult to recommend when you can buy a far more functional device like a tablet or a smart home speaker with a screen and camera for either the same price or a little bit more. The Portal platform still suffers from a pronounced paucity of apps, including ones to make video calls with that aren’t provided by Facebook itself.Facebook is banking on its advanced camera to pull users away from more functional smart screens, but that feature alone probably isn’t enough for most people. Amazon’s new Echo Show 8 costs the same as the smaller Portal, while Google’s Nest Hub Max costs $50 more than the Portal and is a much more comprehensive product thanks to Google’s smart assistant and web integrations. If users are looking just to video chat, that could also be accomplished via video conferencing capabilities now built into virtually every modern phone and tablet.With the Portal, Facebook could have rivaled the Amazon Echo Show and smart displays running Google’s optimized version of Android by creating a device that sits at the center of the Facebook ecosystem with better video chat as its key selling point, but the company limited itself by focusing solely on the video conferencing. Built-in Alexa functionality gives the Portal some added capabilities, but even that has the downside of forcing users to balance two voice assistants, with one for things like the weather and another for controlling video chat and device settings. Two voice assistants also mean two potential points of privacy vulnerability — and both Amazon and Facebook have had contractors listening to users’ voice requests to their respective assistants. The main software screen on the Portal shows you a grid of your favorite contacts. Calls take place over Facebook Messenger so you can reach people on whatever device they have that app running. WhatsApp is also integrated. Beyond the main screen, there is a screen saver mode, which turns the Portal into a digital picture frame of your photos from Facebook. There’s also a grid of giant app icons, though the built-in app selection is currently a ghost town. It does include a web browser, Facebook Watch, and the same music apps available within video calls, and Facebook says it will be sharing information on additional apps “in the coming months.”The device might have been useful as a mini recording studio for live streaming — which would effectively leverage Facebook’s vast user base and established streaming platform -- but that’s not a feature that’s currently on offer. Facebook says it’s in the works, however, and is coming later this year. In terms of privacy, Facebook’s hardware team is doing as much as it probably can. The Portal has a built-in mechanical shutter to cover the camera and the same toggle can also disable listening. The device easily allows users to opt out of having their voice command recordings stored and listened to by Facebook, though there isn’t a unified menu to simultaneously disable such a setting for both Facebook and Amazon’s on-board assistants. Facebook also says that it doesn’t listen to or store any video calls and that those are encrypted.Those protections don’t change the fact that the Portal inherently is a Facebook product. That means, according to the company, that the Portal will collect information on user logins, if they made a call, and how often they used a particular feature. Facebook says this is in order to inform which ads a user sees on Facebook. For example, Facebook says that if a user makes many video calls, they might see Facebook ads about video calling. Voice input or things said on a video call won’t be used for advertising, however. The existing public perception of Facebook, given its several privacy-related scandals in recent years, won’t help. Throw in Amazon’s recently controversial listening practices with Alexa, and this is a device that some people — no matter how great the camera technology — will simply refuse to have in their personal space.One of the best tech features of the Portal device could also double as a privacy concern for some. During a video call, because of the wide-angle lens, a user is able to pan around the other caller’s video frame without explicit permission. College kids in dorm rooms everywhere are likely to find this a particularly challenging and invasive feature when calling back home to their parents.\--With assistance from Kurt Wagner and Sarah Frier.To contact the author of this story: Mark Gurman in Los Angeles at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Vlad Savov at email@example.comFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Alphabet's Google launched a new Pixel smartphone with a radar sensor and improved camera features at an event in New York City on Tuesday. It also announced updates to several Pixel devices to build on its vision of ambient computing across devices. The Pixel 4's radar sensor can respond to user gestures such as hand waves to control features of the phone, such as answering a call and switching to the next song in a playlist.
(Bloomberg) -- Paytm is close to scoring $2 billion of new financing from investors including Jack Ma’s Ant Financial and SoftBank Group Corp., a person familiar with the matter said, describing a mega-deal that will raise the temperature in India’s increasingly heated financial payments arena.Rob Citrone’s Discovery Capital Management is also in discussions to join a funding round that values the country’s top online financial services firm at $16 billion, the person said, asking not to be identified talking about a private deal. The funding will be split evenly between equity and debt and is aimed at helping Paytm fend off an influx of rivals, the person said. Talks are in their final stages but the terms could still change, the person added.If a deal is finalized, Paytm could outstrip fellow high-profile Asian startups such as Grab and Gojek in valuation. Billionaire Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma is raising capital to protect the startup’s share of a potentially $1 trillion Indian payments market from newer entrants Facebook Inc., Alphabet Inc.’s Google and Walmart Inc.-owned Flipkart’s PhonePe. Over the past year, a string of new apps have made payments increasingly easy, bringing discounts and cash bonuses to young, smartphone-savvy users.Paytm remains the leader for now. The firm has in a decade become India’s biggest digital payments brand, attracting big names in investing from Alibaba co-founder Ma and SoftBank founder Masayoshi Son to Warren Buffett. Sharma got a huge boost in 2016 after India’s government moved to eliminate most of the nation’s paper money in circulation in a bid to curb corruption. His startup, a pioneer in the country’s nascent field, saw tens of millions of consumers and hundreds of thousands of businesses sign up for digital services in a matter of months.“India is a large market,” said Kunal Pande, head of financial services risk consulting at KPMG. “Digital payments adoption is growing quickly, yet there is room for massive growth as users get comfortable transacting digitally. The large business opportunity makes it attractive for both domestic startups and large global players.”Read more: Facebook and Google Chase a New $1 Trillion Payments MarketPaytm, which is also backed by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., declined to comment in response to emailed questions. Ant had no immediate comment when contacted, while Discovery Capital and SoftBank declined to comment.Sharma is now extending his online empire into e-commerce and banking, even as others encroach on his turf. The Indian payments market remains a chaotic field where the rules are hazy on what players can offer, yet its promise has lured a string of competitors including Indian banks, its postal service and its richest man, Mukesh Ambani.Credit Suisse Group AG now estimates that the Indian digital payments market will touch $1 trillion by 2023 from about $200 billion currently. It’s a market with huge potential: Cash still accounts for 70% of all Indian transactions by value, according to Credit Suisse, and neighboring China is far more advanced with a mobile payments market worth more than $5 trillion.Ant Financial, China’s largest provider of internet financial services and one of Paytm’s earliest backers, has said it will continue investing in mobile-payment providers around the world to boost offshore revenue and buttress itself against rising competition and tighter regulation at home.It’s not clear how much SoftBank would contribute, but the Japanese company is going through a rocky stretch. SoftBank’s shares are down about 30% from their peak this year as investors, unnerved by the WeWork turmoil and Uber Technologies Inc.’s disappointing debut, grow skittish about startup valuations.\--With assistance from Lulu Yilun Chen, Hema Parmar and Vincent Bielski.To contact the reporter on this story: Saritha Rai in Bangalore at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Arijit Ghosh at email@example.com, ;Sarah Wells at firstname.lastname@example.org, Edwin Chan, Vlad SavovFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- PT Tokopedia, the online marketplace backed by the SoftBank Vision Fund and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., has begun discussions with potential investors for what’s likely to be its final private funding round before a dual stock market listing.Indonesia’s largest online mall is considering listing shares at home as well as in another as-yet-undecided location, Chief Executive Officer William Tanuwijaya told Bloomberg News. But he wouldn’t specify a timetable for an initial public offering, citing uncertain market conditions in a trade war.Tokopedia, the country’s most valuable startup after ride-hailing giant Gojek, is focused on its home market for now but an overseas listing should raise its profile while attracting new investors. Tanuwijaya said the startup he co-founded 10 years ago is aiming to break even next year. Its gross merchandise value should triple to as much as 222 trillion rupiah ($16 billion) in 2019, he said. Revenue is growing faster than GMV, while its community of sellers rose to 6.4 million from about 5 million last year, he added.“Dual-listing is most likely to be our approach” because the Indonesia-focused e-commerce site wants its consumers and sellers to also become shareholders, the 37-year-old founder said in an interview in Jakarta. “We are now in the process of picking the right partners who believe in our vision and mission.”SoftBank Vision Fund, Alibaba Lead $1.1 Billion Tokopedia RoundTokopedia is gunning for a listing at a time many of its peers around the world are tapping the brakes. Uber Technologies Inc.’s disappointing debut and the chaos surrounding WeWork’s botched IPO have put startups under pressure to prove their business model can lead to revenue and profit growth. The co-founders of Grab, Southeast Asia’s most valuable startup and another of SoftBank’s portfolio companies, have said they’re not planning an IPO any time soon.With a looming risk of a global recession, it’s crucial for large platforms like Tokopedia to establish a sustainable business by generating profits, said Chatib Basri, a former finance minister and senior lecturer at the University of Indonesia. “When there is a disruption to a company as big as Tokopedia, which has 90 million monthly active users, it could result in a systemic effect,” he said.Tokopedia’s advantage is its presence in an Indonesian e-commerce market projected to expand from $21 billion in 2019 to $82 billion by 2025, according to a study by Google, Temasek Holdings Pte and Bain & Co. Unlike peers Alibaba’s Lazada and Tencent Holdings Ltd.-backed Shopee, which operate across Southeast Asia, Tokopedia has chosen to expand deeper into rural areas of Indonesia, an archipelago of more than 17,000 islands where online shopping is still relatively under-developed.“Indonesia’s e-commerce penetration is still 4% to 5%, so the room for growth is still big,” Tanuwijaya said.\--With assistance from Viriya Singgih.To contact the reporter on this story: Yoolim Lee in Singapore at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Edwin Chan at firstname.lastname@example.org, Vlad SavovFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Fake news is a well-documented problem. AI-generated videos (also known as deepfakes) and images are easier to come up with than ever before. It’s easy to see how such content published on social networks or by reputable media outlets could be used to manipulate public opinion.
Booking.com has unveiled the next piece in its evolution toward becoming a full-service online travel agency — flight bookings in seven European countries. This is believed to be the first time that Booking.com has offered standalone flight bookings other than through sister company Kayak. The difference is now that when travelers using Booking.com sites and […]
(Bloomberg) -- Apple Inc. came under fire on Monday for sending web browsing data, including IP addresses, to China’s Tencent Holdings Ltd., the latest criticism of how the company operates in the world’s most populous nation.For about two years, Apple has been sending data to Tencent as part of an iPhone and iPad security feature that warns users if a website is malicious or unsafe before they load it. The U.S. company checks addresses against an existing list of sites known to be problematic. That list is maintained by Tencent for users in mainland China and by Google for other regions, including in the U.S.In newer versions of Apple’s iOS operating systems, the company says this feature “may also log your IP address,” potentially providing Tencent, a Chinese internet conglomerate with government ties, data such as a user’s location. The safe browsing feature with Google was first added to iOS in 2008, but it was expanded to include Tencent with iOS 11 in 2017. Apple updated its description of the feature in more recent versions of iOS.“We deserve to be informed about this kind of change and to make choices about it,” Matthew Green, a cryptographer and professor at Johns Hopkins University, wrote in a blog post. “Users should learn about these changes before Apple pushes the feature into production, and thus asks millions of their customers to trust them.”This isn’t the first time Apple has been criticized for working with a Chinese company to handle local data. In 2018, Apple partnered with Guizhou-Cloud Big Data to store iCloud data locally for users in mainland China.More recently, Apple has been scrutinized for appeasing China. BuzzFeed recently reported that Apple told creators of shows for its TV+ streaming service to avoid portraying China in a poor light. The company recently removed the Taiwanese flag from the emoji keyboard on devices running in Hong Kong and Macau, after earlier pulling it from Mainland China. It also came under fire for removing a maps app in Hong Kong that the developer said was designed to help users avoid areas of protest. Apple said it was following local laws in both instances.Apple said in a statement that the feature protects user privacy and safeguards people’s data. The checks occur on the devices, and the actual web addresses are never shared with Tencent and Google, the safe browsing providers. The feature is on by default, but can be switched off, Apple also said. The IP address of a user’s device is shared when a website is found to be suspicious and a warning is sent.Some users were concerned that data would be sent to Tencent globally because the firm is mentioned even on iPhones outside of China. Apple will likely clarify this in a future version of iOS.The feature can be disabled under the Privacy & Security section in the Settings app by tapping the “Fraudulent Website Warning” toggle. If a user does that, IP addresses won’t be shared, but Apple also won’t be able to check websites against Tencent’s or Google’s lists.(Updates with more comments from Apple in seventh paragraph.)To contact the reporter on this story: Mark Gurman in San Francisco at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Tom Giles at firstname.lastname@example.org, Alistair Barr, Andrew MartinFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.