Techmeme
December 21, 2017, 6:05 PM

Top News

Jillian D'Onfro / CNBC:
Eric Schmidt to step down as executive chairman of Alphabet's board of directors, will transition to technical adviser and continue to serve on the board  —  Eric Schmidt will be stepping down as the executive chairman of Alphabet's board of directors and transitioning to technical advisor, the company announced.
Alex Webb / Bloomberg:
Sources: Apple is developing an EKG heart monitor for Apple Watch  —  Electrocardiogram can help detect arrhythmia, stroke risks  —  Apple Watch already has a built-in heart rate monitor  —  Apple Inc. is developing an advanced heart-monitoring feature for future versions of its smartwatch …
Ben Kuchera / Polygon:
Apple says apps with loot boxes or other mechanisms that provide randomized virtual items for purchase must disclose odds of receiving items prior to purchase  —  This is a big change  —  The rise of loot boxes in premium video games was one of the most controversial stories of the year …
CNBC:
Comcast claims it will award $1K bonuses to 100k+ employees due to net neutrality repeal and tax cut; AT&T to award $1K bonuses to 200k employees and invest $1B  —  - The House of Representatives on Wednesday sent tax reform legislation to President Donald Trump, who is expected to sign it soon.
Jem Aswad / Variety:
Universal Music Group and Facebook sign multiyear deal to license UMG's recorded music and publishing catalogs across Facebook, Instagram, and Oculus  —  Facebook and Universal Music Group today announced a global, multi-year agreement under which UMG becomes the first major music company …
Nathaniel Popper / New York Times:
Winklevoss twins reflect on their risky bet on Bitcoin, now worth ~$1.3B, made using the $65M settlement they received from Facebook  —  The virtual currency stockpile that Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss began amassing in 2012 is now worth around $1.65 billion.  They have no plans to sell.
Monica Alleven / FierceWireless:
3GPP, the organization that governs cellular standards, signs off on the first specification for 5G, dubbed 5G NR; full details coming later this week  —  As expected, members of the 3GPP ratified the Non-Standalone (NSA) 5G New Radio (NR) specification for what will form the basis of commercial 5G products …
Nicholas Megaw / Financial Times:
Long Island Iced Tea, an unprofitable soft drink maker, rebrands as Long Blockchain Corp and pivots to blockchain exploration, causing stock to rise up to 500%  —  A US securities regulator has warned investors against “potential scams” following a surge in stock prices of hitherto obscure companies …
Jon Russell / TechCrunch:
Chinese ride-hailing company Didi Chuxing says it has raised $4B from undisclosed backers, which will be used for AI and international expansion  —  China's Didi Chuxing, the country's top ride-hailing company, said today that it has raised $4 billion in new capital to support a range …
Nick Statt / The Verge:
Mozilla releases Firefox for Fire TV, touts ability to launch popular video sites like YouTube amid Amazon-Google feud over YouTube access on Amazon's devices  —  An alternative workaround to the Amazon-Google feud  —  Amid Amazon and Google's bitter and self-defeating feud over the right …
New York Times:
Job ads aimed at age groups on platforms including Facebook raise questions of age discrimination, prompt lawsuit; Amazon, LinkedIn change methods after query  —  This article was written through collaboration between The New York Times and ProPublica, the independent, nonprofit investigative journalism organization.
Rob Goldman / Facebook:

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