Techmeme
August 5, 2020, 7:50 PM

Top News

Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Facebook launches Instagram Reels, its TikTok competitor that lets users create and publish 15-second videos, in 50+ countries, including the US, UK, and Japan  —  Instagram Reels, the company's significant effort in challenging TikTok on short-form creative content, is launching globally, starting today.
Mary Jo Foley / ZDNet:
Samsung and Microsoft extend their partnership to add deeper integration with Office on Galaxy Note20 devices and let users stream Android apps to Windows 10  —  The new Samsung Galaxy Note 20 devices will support Office app synchronization, new Your Phone features and Microsoft's cloud gaming functionality.
Ben Schoon / 9to5Google:
Samsung announces 6.7" Galaxy Note20 and 6.9" Note20 Ultra with Android 10, Snapdragon 865+, and more, starting at $999 and $1,299  —  Samsung's Galaxy Note lineup has evolved over the years, but always remained a series for power users.  Today, Samsung is launching the Galaxy Note 20 series …
Joanna Stern / Wall Street Journal:
Sergiu Gatlan / BleepingComputer:
Twitter fixes a bug in its Android app that could let hackers access private data like DMs; 96% of the apps' users currently use a patched version of Android  —  Twitter today announced that it fixed a security vulnerability in the Twitter for Android app that could have allowed attackers …
Ryan Mac / BuzzFeed News:
Instagram says a “bug” caused its hashtag recommendations to favor Trump-related content when searching for hashtags related to Joe Biden and Trump  —  “A technical error caused a number of hashtags to not show related hashtags.  We've disabled this feature while we investigate."
Chaim Gartenberg / The Verge:
Samsung announces the Galaxy Z Fold 2 with an upgraded camera system, larger 7.6-inch main display, and hole-punch cameras; release date and price TBA  —  The Fold is back  —  Samsung has officially announced the Galaxy Z Fold 2 at its Unpacked event, the successor to last year's Galaxy Fold …
Chance Miller / 9to5Mac:
Virginia becomes the first US state to use Apple and Google's COVID-19 Exposure Notification API  —  The Exposure Notification API developed by Apple and Google is officially being put to use in the United States.  Virginia has become the first U.S. state to offer a COVID-19 contact tracing application using …
Lawrence Abrams / BleepingComputer:
Camera maker Canon struck by apparent ransomware attack resulting in data loss for users of its free cloud storage and affecting many of its website domains  —  ​Canon has suffered a ransomware attack that impacts numerous services, including Canon's email, Microsoft Teams, USA website …
More: Gizmodo
Davey Alba / New York Times:
In an open letter, 20 state AGs called on Facebook to better prevent messages of hate, bias, and disinformation from spreading and support users facing abuse  —  The call from 20 state officials adds to the rising pressure facing Mark Zuckerberg and his company.
Sara Fischer / Axios:
TikTok tightens policies against manipulated content, expands fact-checking partnerships, and is working with DHS's Countering Foreign Influence Task Force  —  TikTok announced new rules for its users on Wednesday to curb misinformation and manipulation ahead of the 2020 election.
Tom Warren / The Verge:
Microsoft ends its xCloud game streaming test on iOS devices, says it had to limit the app to one game and 10,000 testers “to comply with App Store policies”  —  Apple's App Store policies appear to be holding xCloud back  —  Microsoft has ended its xCloud game streaming test for iOS devices today.
Tom Krazit / Protocol:
Microsoft releases Open Service Mesh, an open source tool to help companies build complex modular apps more easily  —  More than a year after declaring itself a neutral party in the emerging service-mesh arena, Microsoft will release its own open-source take on the technology Wednesday …
More: TechCrunch
Daniel Bader / Android Central:
Samsung launches Galaxy Watch 3 in 41mm and 45mm variants with a thinner, lighter design on Samsung's Tizen platform, arriving on August 6 for $400+  —  Our favorite smartwatch-meets-fidget-spinner is back.  —  It's no surprise that Samsung's Galaxy Watch is still incredibly popular despite being almost two years old.
Eugene Wei / Remains of the Day:
TikTok's video recommendation algorithm shows that machine learning can overcome cultural ignorance, a boon for companies operating in foreign markets  —  I often describe myself as a cultural determinist, more as a way to differentiate myself from people with other dominant worldviews, though I am not a strict adherent.
Bloomberg:
Interviews show Google automating mental health ads has boosted big firms and sidelined independent therapists, forcing them to spend more or face irrelevancy  —  The company's push into health care is a case study in how tech giants dominate small businesses.  And the U.S. government may have something to say about that.

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Brian Heater / TechCrunch: