Facebook Pulls Market Research VPN

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Facebook Pulls Market Research VPN
Number 758
Broadcast Date FEBRUARY 22, 2019
Episode Length 3:49
Hosts Tom Merritt

Facebook is shutting down its VPN used to collect market data, Bowser takes over Nintendo, Japan mines its second asteroid.


Facebook is removing its Onavo VPN app from the Google Play store. The VPN service will continue to work for existing users but eventually be shut down. Facebook used data from the app's users to conduct market research but it has stopped that practice. Facebook has also stopped recruiting new users of the Facebook Research app for Android. The iOS versions of both apps were banned by Apple.
YouTube says it has terminated more than 400 channels, disabled comments on tens of millions of videos and reported illegal content to authorities for violations of its policies. Nestle companies, AT&T, Hasbro, Epic Games and Germany's Dr. August Oetker KG food company have all paused advertisements on YouTube over concerns about appearing alongside videos shared by pedophiles. A source told Ars Technica that Disney has also paused YouTube advertising for the same reason.
Reggie Fils-Amie announced he is retiring as president of Nintendo America in order to level up to spending more time with his wife, family and friends. Doug Bowser will take over as president on April 15. Bowser previously led sales and marketing for the Switch and before that was NOT King of the Koopas. That is a different Bowser.
Intel officials and other developers tell Axios' Ina Fried that they expect Apple to move its Macs to ARM processors as early as next year. This echoes Bloomberg's report that sources say Apple will move to ARM in 2020 for Macs along with a unified way to build apps for iOS and macOS.
Baidu beat analyst expectations for revenue and profit. Revenue from its streaming video service iQiyi rose 55 percent, offsetting lower ad sales on search and news. Baidu plans to expand its AI offerings like smart speakers and autonomous driving to enterprise and government customers. While revenue rose 10% it was the slowest growth in 6 quarters.
Apple is partnering with Ant Financial's Huabei consumer credit service to offer interest free credit for new iPhone purchases in China. Apple's website also indicates financing schemes available from several banks. Reuters reports you can get an iPhone XR for 271 Yuan the equivalent of US$41 a month or a XS for 362 yuan or US$53.
Gartner released its Q4 smartphone market numbers. Samsung and Apple declined, but stayed first and second. Huawei and Oppo both rose and made up third and fourth, with Oppo climbing over Xiaomi who dropped to fifth with essentially flat marketshare.
Nvidia introduced the GeForce GTX 1660 Ti graphics card based on its Turing architecture. Unlike Nvidia's RTX cards, it does not include DLSS or ray-tracing support. But it does promise power-efficient performance for 120fps gameplay at 1080p. Nvidia says it is 1.5 times faster than the GTX 1060. The GTX 1660 Ti is available worldwide for $279.
The Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency's Hayabusa 2 spacecraft successfully landed on the near-Earth asteroid Ryugu Friday. It will be the second craft to collect samples from an asteroid and return them to Earth after 2005's Hayabusa. The landing and collection were made more challenging as the surface was made of larger-than-expected gravel. Hayabusa 2 will collect two more samples before returning to Earth. NASA's OSIRIS REX arrived at asteroid Bennu in December and is scheduled to collect samples in 2020.


Preceded by:
"HTC Announces Vive Focus Plus"
Facebook Pulls Market Research VPN
Followed by:
"Week in Review for the Week of 2/18/19"