Millions of WhatsApp users are now able to keep messaging, even if the Internet is blocked or disrupted by shutdowns by authoritarian regimes around the world. Proxy supportNow Meta and WhatsApp is seeking to keep communication channels open during connectivity shutdowns by authoritarian regimes via the use of proxy servers. “We’re mindful that just as we’ve celebrated the start to 2023 through private texts or calls, there are many people who continue to be denied the ability to reach their loved ones because of internet shutdowns,” said Meta. “To help, today we’re launching proxy support for WhatsApp users all over the world,” it added. Meta said that connecting via proxy maintains the high level of privacy and security that WhatsApp provides.
Microsoft and the London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG) have signed a ten year strategic agreement, to migrate the exchange operator’s data platform to the cloud. As part of the deal, Microsoft is to purchase a 4 percent equity stake in London Stock Exchange Group, from the Blackstone/Thomson Reuters Consortium. Cloud dealThe deal with the London Stock Exchange will see Redmond architect the UK bourse’s “data infrastructure and build intuitive next-generation productivity, data and analytics and modelling solutions with Microsoft Azure, AI, and Microsoft Teams”. The LSEG’s data platform and other key technology infrastructure will migrate to Microsoft Azure, enhancing its existing cloud migration strategy. The London Stock Exchange purchased financial information firm Refinitiv back in 2019 in a deal valued at $27 billion.1 month ago Silicon UK
The European Parliament and Council earlier this month reached an agreement that will require portable devices to have user-replaceable batteries. The proposed EU legislation covers all types of batteries sold in the EU including portable batteries, SLI batteries (supplying power for starting, lighting or ignition of vehicles), light means of transport (LMT) batteries (electric scooters and bikes etc), electric vehicle (EV) batteries and even industrial batteries. Battery replacementThe EU said that the legislation includes stronger requirements to make batteries more sustainable and durable. According to the deal, a carbon footprint declaration and label will be obligatory for EV batteries, LMT batteries and rechargeable industrial batteries with a capacity above 2kWh. LMT batteries, industrial batteries with a capacity above 2 kWh and EV batteries will also be required to have a “digital battery passport” including information on the battery model as well as information specific to the individual battery and its use.1 month ago Silicon UK
Biden administration indicates a deal is near with key allies to also apply export restrictions on chip-making tools to ChinaChina has been handed even more worrying news after the Biden administration indicated it is extending its chip export restrictions against it. But now US companies are barred from exporting advanced chip manufacturing tools to China, affecting companies such as SMIC, Yangtze Memory Technologies Co (YMTC) and ChangXin Memory. The US chip export restrictions are thus designed to tightly restrict Chinese access to US chipmaking technology, ramping up its efforts to slow Beijing’s technological and military advances. Deal with alliesBut the US has also faced criticism for failing to convince key allies to put in place similar equipment curbs. The US export restrictions are a major concern for China, as it threatens a key sector that is vital for President Xi Jinping’s technological domination ambitions.3 months ago Silicon UK
Alphabet’ Google is now confronting a serious regulatory investigation of one of its core business operations in its home country. For example the UK’s competition watchdog in May 2022 launched its second investigation of Google’s ad tech practices, and whether it may have favoured its own services. DoJ lawsuitPrior to that in March 2022 the UK’s CMA (as well as the European Commission) had both opened formal antitrust investigations into Google and Meta (aka Facebook). In doing so, Google cemented its dominance in tools relied on by website publishers and online advertisers, as well as the digital advertising exchange that runs ad auctions, the DoJ alleges. In 2019 it was reported that attorney generals from more than 30 US states were readying an anti-trust investigation of Google.3 days ago Silicon UK
Neuralink, the Elon Musk-founded start-up aimed at developing wireless brain-machine interfaces, is at the centre of a federal investigation in the United States. Reuters reported that Neuralink is under federal investigation for potential animal-welfare violations. And it comes amid alleged internal staff complaints that animal testing at Neuralink is being rushed, causing needless suffering and deaths. Animal testingThis is not the first time that concern about animal testing at Neuralink has surfaced. There is no doubt Neuralink has conducted animal testing for years.1 month ago Silicon UK
CEO Parag Agrawal and finance chief Ned Segal escorted out of Twitter HQ, after Elon Musk concludes acrimonious acquisition and gains controlElon Musk is now in control of Twitter, after taking ownership of the micro-blogging platform following a prolonged and controversial acquisition process. Court documents had previously revealed private messages, which showed that Parag Agrawal and Elon Musk had fallen out, and Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey had sought to mediate. Musk had reportedly previously accused the fired executives of misleading him and Twitter investors over the number of fake accounts or bots on the platform. Musk recently updated his Twitter bio to read “chief twit”, and on Wednesday Musk filmed himself entering Twitter’s headquarters carrying a sink. Blind allows anonymous messaging by Twitter employees to air their grievances.3 months ago Silicon UK
Tesla is seeking to expand its manufacturing capacity in the US, despite some oversupply issues with its gigafactory in Shanghai. Reuters reported, citing government filings, that Tesla has applied to expand its gigafactory in Texas with an investment totalling $775.7 million. In response to the slowing demand in China, Tesla cut prices for its Model 3 and Model Y cars by up to 9 percent in China, and offered insurance incentives. The Shanghai plant, with about 20,000 workers, accounted for more than half of Tesla’s production for the first three quarters of 2022. Texas expansionNow Reuters has reported that Tesla has applied to expand its gigafactory in Texas with an investment totaling $775.7 million.17 days ago Silicon UK