EU fines Google €4.3 billion

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EU fines Google €4.3 billion
Number 548
Broadcast Date JULY 18, 2018
Episode Length 3:55
Hosts Tom Merritt

Google gets another EU antirust fine, Apple moves iCloud data to Chinese provider in China, Samsung may be working on a foldable phone.


The European Commission has fined Google €4.3 billion for three cases of abusing its dominant Android market position. Google requires its Chrome and search apps to be installed in order to get the Google Play Store and will not allow device makers to offer alternative versions of Android if they also want to offer Google's version. And Google paid companies for exclusive bundling of the Google search app. Google has 90 days to stop the practices, though payments stopped in 2014. Google says it will appeal the decision and suggested Android might no longer be free to device makers if the decision stands. Google was fined €2.42 billion last year for manipulating search results, and is appealing that decision as well.
Chinese Apple users who have not opted out will now have their iCloud data stored on servers from China Telecom's Tianyi cloud storage business rather than on Apple servers. This allows data to fall under Chinese jurisdiction rather than US.
Sources tell the Wall Street Journal that Samsung is planning to introduce a smartphone with a 7-inch display that can fold in half. A smaller display on the front will be visible when folded. The phone could cost as much as $1500. Samsung is also supposedly working on a Bixby-powered smart speaker as well.
Instagram tells TechCrunch it's building two-factor authentication that works though authenticator apps like Duo or Google. Instagram currently offers 2FA thorough SMS which can be vulnerable to SIM-jacking.
The Virtual Link consortium, including AMD, NVIDIA, Oculus, Valve, and Microsoft has announced an open industry standard for connecting VR headsets using one USB-C cable. Currently most headsets connect over multiple cables like USB-A and HDMI. The standard will only apply to next-generation hardware.
Microsoft says it will announce new Xbox hardware and accessories at Gamescom in Germany on August 21st. The best guesses are a new Xbox Elite Controller and possibly new specs for existing console models.
Google released its first miniprogram on the WeChat platform in China. The app is a game called Guess My Sketch where each player teams up with an AI to battle against friends. Google has slowly been trying things in the Chinese market where it does not offer Android or search. Most recently it made it's Files Go file management app available in independent Chinese app stores.
2,400 individuals and 160 organizations across 90 countries, signed a pledge at the Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence, promising to "neither participate in nor support the development, manufacture, trade or use of lethal autonomous weapons." The pledge also calls on governments to pass laws against such weapons. Among the signatories are DeepMind, Elon Musk and the Xprize Foundation.
Sources tell The Information that Walmart is considering offering a streaming video service for $8 a month matching Netflix's cheapest plan and less than Prime Video's standalone amount. Walmart currently offers free streaming video with adds through it's Vudu service.
Google announced it will build the first private trans-Atlantic cable built by a non-telecom company. The Dunant cable will extend from the French Atlantic Coast to Virginia Beach in the US, with the plan to become operational in 2020. Google is also involved in three other subsea cable projects, one private and two as part of a consortium.


Preceded by:
"Netflix Misses Subscriber Target"
EU fines Google €4.3 billion
Followed by:
"Google's Project Fuschia OS May Replace Android in 5 Years"