10 things in tech you need to know today
Good morning! This is the tech news you need to know this Friday.
- Uber's Q4 earnings topped Wall Street expectations, and the company said it will be profitable sooner than expected. Uber said it plans t0 hit profitability by the end of 2020, and shares soared as much as 10% following the new timeline.
- Jeff Bezos used Instagram to take an apparent swipe at a senior Trump official who accused him of ducking an important meeting. White House trade adviser Peter Navarro said Bezos told him at a recent party that they would meet, and has since dodged him.
- SpaceX's COO reportedly said Elon Musk's internet-satellite business Starlink is "likely" going to spin off from SpaceX and go public. Starlink is "the right kind of business that we can go ahead and take public," SpaceX COO Gwynne Shotwell reportedly said on Thursday.
- Amazon plans to create 15,000 jobs in Seattle suburb Bellevue. The company currently employs around 2,000 people in Bellevue, meaning the expansion would grow its total presence there more than eightfold.
- Embattled e-cigarette company Juul has raised $700 million in debt amid financial strain and regulatory pressure. Juul has been fighting off lawsuits, dealing with regulatory scrutiny, and adapting its business all while watching its valuation slide.
- Huawei filed a legal action against Verizon for alleged patent infringements. The suit is likely to exacerbate the tensions between Huawei and the US government, particularly in the light of Huawei's victory last month when the UK announced it would allow the tech giant to build some of its 5G network.
- Clearview AI, the controversial company building a searchable database of peoples' faces, is reportedly planning a "rapid international expansion" that includes countries with documented human rights abuses. Facebook, Twitter, Google, and other platforms have sent cease-and-desist letters to Clearview AI instructing it to stop scraping peoples' images from their sites.
- A Pew study found LGBTQ adults are using dating apps nearly twice as much as straight adults. The results of the survey address the difficulties those in the LGBTQ community face in meeting people offline, whether that's due to a lack of queer spaces or queer visibility.
- TikTok reportedly waited nearly three hours to call police in Brazil after a teen's death was livestreamed on the platform, but the company notified its own PR team almost immediately. TikTok told Business Insider there was a "breakdown" in the process in which the company dealt with this video, and that it had since made changes to its review process, though it did not say what those changes are.
- Elon Musk made a dig at WhatsApp's recent security scandals in a tweet. A recent forensic analysis concluded that Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos' phone was hacked via a malicious link sent on WhatsApp.
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- South Africa reports largest daily jump in cases
- Cognizant is taking inspiration from TCS in trying to tame costs
- SBI reports over four-fold jump in Q4 profit at Rs 3,581 cr
- Virat Kohli joins Ronaldo in top-10 highest-earning athletes on Instagram
- MNM launches people's movement to cater to COVID-19 hotspot Chennai