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Budget 2021

Associate Partners:

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The Tech Weekender: Microsoft to add TikTok in cart with Walmart, Elon Musk's Neuralink puts computer chips in animal brains and more

In case you missed them, here are the biggest developments from the world of tech from the week ending August 28.

August 29, 2020 / 01:17 PM IST
TikTok’s US business sale could be acquired by Microsoft-Walmart or Oracle in a couple of days. The announcement is likely to be made by the end of August, and the deal is unlikely to include TikTok’s Australia, New Zealand or Canadian arms. Microsoft is likely to win the race of acquiring TikTok’s US business after Walmart confirmed that it would be partnering with the software giant. “Microsoft didn’t need Walmart. Initially, Satya Nadella wanted to go it alone,” one person with knowledge told Fox Business referring to the Microsoft CEO. Other players like Oracle, Silver Lake are also said to be in talks for the acquisition.  More details here .
TikTok’s US business sale could be acquired by Microsoft-Walmart or Oracle in a couple of days. The announcement is likely to be made by the end of August, and the deal is unlikely to include TikTok’s Australia, New Zealand or Canadian arms. Microsoft is likely to win the race of acquiring TikTok’s US business after Walmart confirmed that it would be partnering with the software giant. “Microsoft didn’t need Walmart. Initially, Satya Nadella wanted to go it alone,” one person with knowledge told Fox Business referring to the Microsoft CEO. Other players like Oracle, Silver Lake are also said to be in talks for the acquisition. More details here.
Apple is all set to launch its first online store in India next month. This would officially mark its first-party presence in the country, with the Mumbai store still under development and set to debut in 2021. Currently, the iPhone maker sells its products in India via third-party sellers. The development follows the government's decision last year to ease foreign investment rules in sectors like coal mining, contract manufacturing and single-brand retail trading. As part of the relaxations, the Centre had said that retail trading through e-commerce can be undertaken prior to the opening of brick and mortar stores, subject to the condition that companies open brick and mortar stores within two years from the date of start of online retail.  More details here .
Apple is all set to launch its first online store in India next month. This would officially mark its first-party presence in the country, with the Mumbai store still under development and set to debut in 2021. Currently, the iPhone maker sells its products in India via third-party sellers. The development follows the government's decision last year to ease foreign investment rules in sectors like coal mining, contract manufacturing and single-brand retail trading. As part of the relaxations, the Centre had said that retail trading through e-commerce can be undertaken prior to the opening of brick and mortar stores, subject to the condition that companies open brick and mortar stores within two years from the date of start of online retail. More details here.
Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk's neuroscience startup Neuralink unveiled a pig named Gertrude with a coin-sized computer chip in its brain. The chip has been implanted for two months. This may be an early step toward the goal of curing human diseases with the same type of implant.
Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk's neuroscience startup Neuralink unveiled a pig named Gertrude with a coin-sized computer chip in its brain. The chip has been implanted for two months. This may be an early step toward the goal of curing human diseases with the same type of implant. "An implantable device can actually solve these problems," Musk said on a webcast Friday, mentioning ailments such as memory loss, hearing loss, depression, and insomnia. More details here.
Apple’s new iOS 14 update is set to deal a major blow to Facebook and other apps that utilise users’ data across apps. According to Facebook, the update significantly hampers Facebook’s ability to provide targeted ads to iPhone users, which could, in turn, have a devastating effect on the social media giant’s business.  Facebook said that Audience Network, the platform that lets advertisers target audiences when they are using non-Facebook apps, will be the area that will be significantly affected due to these changes. This may severely impact publishers’ ability to monetize through Audience Network on iOS 14 and could render the Audience Network so ineffective on iOS 14 that it may make sense to not offer it on iOS 14.  More details here .
Apple’s new iOS 14 update is set to deal a major blow to Facebook and other apps that utilise users’ data across apps. According to Facebook, the update significantly hampers Facebook’s ability to provide targeted ads to iPhone users, which could, in turn, have a devastating effect on the social media giant’s business.  Facebook said that Audience Network, the platform that lets advertisers target audiences when they are using non-Facebook apps, will be the area that will be significantly affected due to these changes. This may severely impact publishers’ ability to monetize through Audience Network on iOS 14 and could render the Audience Network so ineffective on iOS 14 that it may make sense to not offer it on iOS 14. More details here.
Amazon is getting into the wearable gadget market with a new smart band that goes way beyond regular fitness and activity tracking. The Amazon Halo Band is a fitness wristband that gathers and analyses data using AI to provide users with feedback pertaining to their mental and physical health. Unlike regular smart bands and smartwatches, the Amazon Halo Band does not have a screen. The Halo fitness tracker promises to improve your health by monitoring your body fat percentage through a feature known as 'Body'. The health experts responsible for Halo claim that calculating body fat is a more effective indicator for health as opposed to just checking your weight and height. However, the one catch here is that you will have to send the company semi-nude pictures of yourself to get accurate measurements.  More details here .
Amazon is getting into the wearable gadget market with a new smart band that goes way beyond regular fitness and activity tracking. The Amazon Halo Band is a fitness wristband that gathers and analyses data using AI to provide users with feedback pertaining to their mental and physical health. Unlike regular smart bands and smartwatches, the Amazon Halo Band does not have a screen. The Halo fitness tracker promises to improve your health by monitoring your body fat percentage through a feature known as 'Body'. The health experts responsible for Halo claim that calculating body fat is a more effective indicator for health as opposed to just checking your weight and height. However, the one catch here is that you will have to send the company semi-nude pictures of yourself to get accurate measurements. More details here.
Xiaomi Redmi 9 was launched earlier this week in India. Redmi 9 specifications include a 6.53-inch HD+ IPS LCD, a MediaTek Helio G35 SoC with 4GB RAM and up to 128GB internal memory. The budget smartphone under Rs 10,000 includes a dual rear camera setup with a 13MP primary sensor with f/2.2 aperture and a 2MP f/2.4 depth sensor. For selfies, Redmi 9 has a 5MP front camera. The smartphone also packs a 5,020 mAh battery with 10W charging support. Redmi 9 4GB + 64GB variant is priced at Rs 8,999, and the 4GB + 128GB variant is priced at Rs 9,999.  More details here .
Xiaomi Redmi 9 was launched earlier this week in India. Redmi 9 specifications include a 6.53-inch HD+ IPS LCD, a MediaTek Helio G35 SoC with 4GB RAM and up to 128GB internal memory. The budget smartphone under Rs 10,000 includes a dual rear camera setup with a 13MP primary sensor with f/2.2 aperture and a 2MP f/2.4 depth sensor. For selfies, Redmi 9 has a 5MP front camera. The smartphone also packs a 5,020 mAh battery with 10W charging support. Redmi 9 4GB + 64GB variant is priced at Rs 8,999, and the 4GB + 128GB variant is priced at Rs 9,999. More details here.
Facebook said it plans to launch its news service in the United Kingdom, Germany, France, India and Brazil in the coming months, after having introduced the feature in the United States last year. The social media giant's news service currently pays US publishers for content and has original reporting from more than 200 outlets, including thousands of local news organizations.
Facebook said it plans to launch its news service in the United Kingdom, Germany, France, India and Brazil in the coming months, after having introduced the feature in the United States last year. The social media giant's news service currently pays US publishers for content and has original reporting from more than 200 outlets, including thousands of local news organizations.
Beyond Meat has launched a new e-commerce website to sell plant-based meat directly to people online. The site will have some online-only items for sale and will serve as a test kitchen of sorts for future products.
Beyond Meat has launched a new e-commerce website to sell plant-based meat directly to people online. The site will have some online-only items for sale and will serve as a test kitchen of sorts for future products. "It will allow us to have direct conversations with our consumers and will be convenient for consumers who don’t live near a supermarket,” Charles Muth, Chief Growth Officer, Beyond Meat said in an interview with The Verge.
Xiaomi seems to be bouncing back overseas since the onset of the pandemic. The Chinese smartphone maker reported revenue of CNY 53.54 billion (roughly $7.7 billion) in the second quarter of 2020, up by 3.1 percent since the same period in 2019, surpassing analysts' expectations of CNY 51.41 billion. Xiaomi's revenue is also up by 7.7 percent since the previous quarter, marking the beginning of the path to recovery, at least in the overseas markets. However, sales in India saw a more gradual recovery as the lockdown was lifted in Q2 2020, with production constraints continuing. Even as the lockdown restrictions were eased in the months since the daily number of smartphone activation stood at 72 percent as compared to January 2020. In overseas markets, Xiaomi smartphone activation touched 120 percent of the pre-pandemic level recorded in January 2020.  More details here.
Xiaomi seems to be bouncing back overseas since the onset of the pandemic. The Chinese smartphone maker reported revenue of CNY 53.54 billion (roughly $7.7 billion) in the second quarter of 2020, up by 3.1 percent since the same period in 2019, surpassing analysts' expectations of CNY 51.41 billion. Xiaomi's revenue is also up by 7.7 percent since the previous quarter, marking the beginning of the path to recovery, at least in the overseas markets. However, sales in India saw a more gradual recovery as the lockdown was lifted in Q2 2020, with production constraints continuing. Even as the lockdown restrictions were eased in the months since the daily number of smartphone activation stood at 72 percent as compared to January 2020. In overseas markets, Xiaomi smartphone activation touched 120 percent of the pre-pandemic level recorded in January 2020. More details here.
Moneycontrol News
first published: Aug 29, 2020 01:17 pm

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