Technology News Recap: 6th August 2018

1. Facebook Dating

Back in May 2018 F8 conference, Facebook debuted their add-on mobile dating feature causing Match Group’s (Tinder and OkCupid) stock to plummet by more than 17 %. Presently Facebook began testing the new service internally with employees. Once you create a separate profile for dating, Facebook Dating will match your profile (similar to Tinder) with another person via a mutual “like”. Once that happens you will be allowed to contact them. An additional possible feature of Facebook Dating would let you make your dating profile visible for people attending the same event as you. Zuckerberg hopes this will allow to generate more offline connections, that according to him it “is going to be for building real, long-term relationships — not just for hookups.

Screenshots (source link below) show the sign-up flow for Facebook dating, including options to specify your gender, your location, and your sexual orientation. However, just because Facebook Dating is being tested internally does not necessarily mean that it will launch to the public as most of the times new products tend to be often killed before they are released based on what companies find during testing. For all you single hearts out there, keep your fingers crossed for this exciting new update!

Source: The Verge

2. Apple becomes a 1 trillion-dollar company

Following a jump in stock after strong Q3 earnings, Apple has reached a market cap of over $1 trillion. The iPhone makers surpass their projections and analysts’ estimates, while also making a reliable forecast for its upcoming Q4 earnings. However, given the turbulent nature of the market, there is a possibility that Apple won’t remain a $1 trillion company for very long and in the coming days could potentially dwindle back and forth over the $1 trillion mark. For now, Apple is the only US-based trillion-dollar company on the market, closely followed by Amazon, who also is very near to hitting $1 trillion themselves.

The CEO of Apple, Tim Cook, call this victory a milestone but in no way their primary focus and not the companies most important measure of success. Instead, Tim argues, that was, in fact, a result of its focus on its products, customers, and company values. In the two decades since their foundation, Apple has risen to become the most valuable company in the world by helping to popularise the smartphone. The iPhone, introduced by Jobs in 2007 and has since sold more than one billion units. Now going forward the most significant challenge Apple faces is the struggle to maintain its lead in this ever developing and competitive field.

Source: The Verge

3. Google plans to bring Cloud to China

Last week, reports surfaced of Google tailoring its search and news apps for the Chinese market to comply with the countries censorship laws. Now the tech giant is looking to partner with major Chinese cloud and server providers to deliver services such as Google Drive and Google Docs to the country. Google aims to run these services through China-based data centres and servers, alike Apple, which runs its iCloud operations inside the country.

Google has narrowed down the candidates for the partnership and is now in talks with the internet giant Tencent Holdings Ltd and cloud computing and prominent data service provider Inspur Group. Due to the recent trade tensions between China and the US, it is unclear whether these partnership efforts will come to fruition as these political strains might complicate any agreement. Google has no data centres in the Chinese mainland, and since China’s laws require digital information to be stored within the country, it needs to use the domestic data centres and servers provided by local partners to offer its internet-based services, such as Drive and Docs, to the market.

Source: The Verge

4. Alphabet: Investments into the future harbor significant loses

The parent company of Google, better known as “Alphabet” has released second-quarter earnings for 2018, beating the Wall Street’s estimates on revenue and income. Last week the European Union levied a hefty 5 billion dollar fine against Alphabet which had an impact on Google’s operating income, despite which Alphabet stock is up around 3.5 percent in after-hours trading. In the companies “Other Bets” category, a line item that includes nearly every non-Google division, the group now houses the Waymo self-driving car unit and the experimental tech lab X, which oversees the balloon Wi-Fi initiative Project Loon and drone delivery unit Project Wing. Also including the connectivity-focused Access (formerly Google Fiber), healthcare and life extension units Verily and Calico, and other smaller units centred on venture capital investments.

According to its earnings report, the Other Bets units generated $145 million in revenue in the second quarter, up 33 percent year over year. Yet the category collectively cost Alphabet $732 million in operating losses. Stock-based compensation for the category this quarter totaled $127 million, equaling nearly the entire category’s quarterly sales. The company is spending a lot of money on its more experimental projects, and Alphabet may soon find itself losing $1 billion every three months to keep all the divisions running. But for now, Alphabet continues to grind forth, and we will have to wait and see which bets will pay off.

Source: The Verge

5. Finally, an end to pesky Windows updates

Windows 10 now uses machine learning to stop updates installing when a PC is in use. This persistent feature of Windows 10 has previously been addressed and attempts to resolve it has been made. The request to update has been combated with a snooze feature that would allow you to postpone the update. Nonetheless, PC users rallied together, expressing collective dissatisfaction with the updates rebooting the devices when they’re in use. Microsoft Windows Insider’s chief Dona Sarkar reassures users that their feedback has been received: “We heard you, and to alleviate this pain if you have an update pending we’ve updated our reboot logic to use a new system that is more adaptive and proactive.” Microsoft claims it has trained a “predictive model” that will accurately predict when the best time to restart the device is thanks to machine learning.

This new model has been tested internally, and according to them, the results are promising. Windows 10 testers will start seeing the updated model in the latest Redstone 5 and 19H1 updates released to Insiders today. Once the Microsoft’s update model is finally fixed, it could bring an end to one of the most frustrating aspects of Windows 10.

Source: The Verge

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