Bill Gates warns that big tech companies aren’t worried enough about government regulation, in a new interview with Axios today. Calling out “Apple and other tech giants,” Gates argues that companies are inviting government intervention by flaunting hubris, saying they need to be “careful that they’re not trying to think their view is more important than the government’s view, or than the government being able to function in some key areas.” When Axios asked Gates for an example, he said, “enthusiasm about making financial transactions anonymous and invisible, and their view that even a clear mass-murdering criminal’s communication should never be available to the government.” When pressed on whether Gates meant being able to unlock an iPhone, he replied, “There’s no question of ability; it’s the question of willingness.” This response appears to reference the dispute between the FBI and Apple over … [Read more...] about Bill Gates says big tech companies are inviting government regulation
Big tech companies
When Apple and Amazon talk about making shows, there's one title that keeps coming up. "The mandate from [Amazon CEO] Jeff Bezos is clear: Bring me 'Game of Thrones,'" leads a recent report from Variety, featuring an interview with Roy Price, Amazon's head of Prime video global content and Amazon Studios. Game of Thrones is now shorthand for the growing efforts of big tech companies to begin making high-quality video in an effort to get a piece of the growing number of users who are cutting the cord and paying for content online. The fantasy drama has made itself a core part of HBO's identity, leading to millions of tweets and record growth for the company. Right after GoT season 7 started airing, HBO Now hit the top of Apple's App Store for revenue, beating Netflix. SEE ALSO: How 'Game of Thrones' created the epic wight scene in the season finale So it should come at no surprise that the most valuable companies in the world want their own pieces of the hyped content pie. Both … [Read more...] about Why every big tech company wants a ‘Game of Thrones’
In this economy, cash is king. Since in the end of 2008, big tech companies have been stuffing cash under their mattresses in case the current recession goes longer and deeper than expected. Even companies with strong balance sheets have been cutting costs, laying off workers, and scaling back projects in order to build up their war chests. As a result, you have companies racking up huge cash reserves, including Cisco ($26.7 billion), Apple ($24.5 billion), Microsoft ($19.7 billion), and Google ($14.4 billion). Meanwhile, with the stock market shedding half of its value between July 2007 and January 2009, the market price of a lot of public technology companies has essentially been put on a "50% off sale." This creates an atmosphere that is ripe for consolidation. As soon as the companies with the cash have confidence that the economy is at an inflection point, they will start spending money to position themselves for the turnaround. We may be starting to see it. The Dow … [Read more...] about Seven big tech acquisitions to watch for in 2009
Tom Foremski relates a Deal Pipeline report that the Justice Dept. is looking into collusion among the big tech companies not to poach each others' top employees. [DOJ] has sent letters to at least a dozen major computer hardware and software companies. Google Inc., Yahoo! Inc. and Apple Inc. are believed to be among the recipients, as is at least biotechnology firm, Genetech Inc. . . .The letters suggest that antitrust division lawyers suspect that some of the targeted companies have agreed not to poach each others' employees. Such an agreement, if DOJ lawyers can prove it exists, could be a violation of the nation's oldest antitrust law, the Sherman Act of 1890, which prohibits agreements among competitors that result in restraint of trade. The last big scuffle in this area was Apple's hiring of IBM exec Mark Papermaster to head iPhone hardware development. The matter was settled in January. DOJ scrutiny of Google is all well and good, Tom says, but this seems like "clutching at … [Read more...] about Are tech companies agreeing not to steal top execs?
I can appreciate the blurry line between politics and technology just as much as the next guy. But Michael Reagan, eldest son of President Ronald Reagan, is launching a laughable effort to get conservatives to support right-wing causes by using his daddy's name as an e-mail hosting domain. Granted, his reasoning for the effort is valid. The big tech companies - Apple, Google, Microsoft, etc. - tend to support left-wing causes and offer their financial support to candidates and initiatives that support those causes. And who is lining the pockets of these tech companies and enabling them to support the left-wing causes? Reagan explains and emphasizes key phrases in bold: People who believe in true Reagan Conservative Values are unwittingly supporting the Obama, Pelosi and Reid liberal agenda! What do I mean? Well, every time you use your email from companies like Google, AOL, Yahoo, Hotmail, Apple and others, you are helping the liberals. These companies are, and will continue, to … [Read more...] about Reagan Mail: Can a $40 e-mail address stop tech companies from backing left-wing causes?
We've been progressively building the case for flexible working through a few posts. And the conclusions so far are that flexible working is most certainly a good thing in principle. But looking beyond the principles, we should be considering some real world examples. Why have some of the large tech companies tried and failed to get this off the ground? Why are some reportedly making changes in working policies that don't obviously align to their embracing flexible working themselves? So let's reflect a little on the two sides of the coin. On one hand you would assume that tech companies would pioneer the use of technology to fully mobilise and distribute their workforce. As an indutry that has battled more than most in the 'war for talent' over the past decade - surely they would 'live the dream'. And seek to create a highly flexible, distributed and well balanced workforce that is not required to attend an office location ever, or at least with any frequency. They have both strong … [Read more...] about What do the big tech companies know that we don’t?
Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.Forget the battles with AT&T and T-Mobile.That's just so much small-fry nonsense.Verizon now wants you to think of it in the same breath as, you know, the likes of Google or Apple. To help you make this Evel Knievel-like mental leap, the company is launching a new campaign touting how Verizon is now joining the ranks of companies that are, oh, making the world a better place.Entitled "Humanability," the campaign wants to show you how Verizon is "partnering with visionaries from just about every industry you can imagine, using technology and data to turn innovative ideas into reality."And you thought it was merely the cell phone provider with the best network. Diego Scotti, Verizon's marketing chief, told The Wall Street Journal the new campaign represents … [Read more...] about Verizon: No, no, we’re a big tech company
With unemployment high and an outlook that's improving but still uncertain, the best responses coming out of the big tech companies about the immediate future is tempered optimism. IBM's recent assessment that the economy has " really stabilized " may have best summarized expectations.But some of the more interesting clues about what's ahead for tech many be in the results of companies with a more specialized market focus. [ Keep up on the day's tech news headlines with InfoWorld's Today's Headlines: First Look newsletter. ] Here are 10 data points about the most recent third quarter. 1. If there's one industry to watch next year, it is clean technology. The federal government stimulus package set aside billions for a sector that's already heating up. For instance, SunPower's third quarter revenue was $466 million compared with $298 million in the second quarter. That compares to $378 million in the third quarter of 2008. Its share price may have taken a hit on a lower … [Read more...] about Tech companies point to upturn in economy
The U.S. Department of Defense is considering offering rapid seed funding to private companies as a way to encourage more work on technology projects with the commercial sector, Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter said Wednesday.The push for greater cooperation with tech companies has been a big theme for the DOD in the last year as it faces a growing and unprecedented threat from private and state actors on the Internet and beyond.That was demonstrated late last year when Sony Pictures suffered a devastating hack of its corporate email system that the U.S. government attributed to North Korea. Hackers based overseas have also been blamed for high-profile attacks on the Department of State and the Office of Personnel Management, the latter of which resulted in personal data on millions of government employees being lost."The DOD has to tap into all the streams of innovation and emerging technology and it has to do so much more quickly," Carter told DARPA's Wait, What? … [Read more...] about US defense secretary mulls rapid grants for tech companies
We open our laptops and hook up to WiFi, click on a browser app on our smartphone, or turn on a tablet, a world of infinite possibilities is at our fingertips. Most often, we don't even consider how the process occurs. The internet's power is simply there, always available. But because we are so accustomed to continuous access, we're running up the meter on electricity.By 2017, half the world's population will be online. As the demand increases, so does electricity usage. According to a report by Greenpeace published earlier this year, worldwide electricity demand is supposed to increase by at least 60% by 2020. The nonprofit environmental organization, which is well-known for its efforts to tackle climate change, has been on the tails of tech giants for years, pushing hard for a cleaner web. Its most recent campaign, called #clickclean, is an effort to build a cleaner, greener internet. "An incredible virtual online world is powered by, essentially, burning rocks — the same way … [Read more...] about How Greenpeace is pushing tech companies to build a cleaner internet