Techmeme
April 12, 2017, 5:45 PM

Top News

Jacob Kastrenakes / The Verge:
New Burger King ad for prime time TV aims to trigger Google Home by asking “OK Google, what is the Whopper burger?”; Google intervenes to stop Home responding  —  Oh no, Google  —  Burger King is unveiling a horrible, genius, infuriating, hilarious, and maybe very poorly thought …
Todd Haselton / CNBC:
BlackBerry awarded a preliminary $815M in arbitration dispute with Qualcomm over royalty payments, with final award to be determined on May 30; stock up 15%+  —  BlackBerry said Wednesday it has been awarded a preliminary $814.9 million in royalty overpayments made to Qualcomm.
Matt Weinberger / Business Insider:
Microsoft announces an event on May 2 in New York City; sources say the focus will be on education and creativity, with new high-end Surface devices unlikely  —  It's official: Microsoft is holding a big Windows event in New York City on May 2nd.  This event was first reported by Mary Jo Foley at ZDnet …
Tony Romm / Recode:
Internet Association, which represents Google, Facebook, Twitter, Netflix, and others, tells FCC chairman Ajit Pai to keep Obama-era net neutrality rules  —  The D.C. lobbying group for Facebook, Google and others tells FCC Chairman Ajit Pai they have their doubts.
Ina Fried / Axios:
Samsung: Bixby's voice functions to be delayed until late spring in US; other Bixby options like visual search, reminders to debut at S8's global launch on 4/21  —  One of the key signature features of Samsung's Galaxy S8 , its Bixby voice assistant, won't work out of the box, when the device goes on sale later this month.
Robert Safian / Fast Company:
Wide ranging interview with Mark Zuckerberg about his 2017 open letter, Facebook's mission, global culture, the spread of misinformation, more  —  In a candid, wide-ranging interview, the CEO shares thoughts on where his company is headed.  —  When Fast Company first wrote about Mark Zuckerberg …
Li Tao / South China Morning Post:
Huawei's CEO Eric Xu Zhijun questions the future of smartwatches, says even though the company has released two watches to date he will never use one  —  It turns out even people at the very cutting edge of technical innovation are entitled to a “technophobe” moment.
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Amazon's FreeTime subscription service gets a parental dashboard to monitor kids' usage of tablets, discussion cards to interact with kids, and more  —  Amazon FreeTime, the subscription service offering kid-friendly books, videos, apps and games, is today rolling out a feature called Discussion Cards …
Josh Constine / TechCrunch:
Facebook says Messenger now has 1.2B MAUs, up from 1B in July 2016 and 900M in April 2016  —  Normally adding 200 million users in 8 months to a product that already has a billion would reduce the average engagement, but most apps don't have Facebook Messenger's network effect.
Scott Rosenberg / Backchannel:
A look at how 15-year-old Google Book Search has shrunk in ambition and scope, after prolonged legal battles  —  Google Books was the company's first moonshot.  But 15 years later, the project is stuck in low-Earth orbit.  —  Books can do anything.  As Franz Kafka once said, “A book must be the axe for the frozen sea inside us.”
Kara Swisher / Recode:
Internal Uber email says Rachel Whetstone, SVP of global public policy and communications, will leave the company and be replaced by deputy Jill Hazelbaker  —  The longtime PR pro is being replaced by her deputy Jill Hazelbaker.  —  According to an internal email from Uber CEO Travis Kalanick …

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