Techmeme
May 21, 2021, 1:40 PM

Top News

Alex Heath / The Verge:
Snap has agreed to acquire WaveOptics, the supplier of the AR displays used in its new Spectacles glasses, for more than $500M  —  WaveOptics made the display in Snap's new Spectacles glasses  —  Snap has agreed to acquire WaveOptics, the supplier of the augmented reality displays that power …
Alex Heath / The Verge:
The Information:
Sources: Netflix is looking to hire an executive to oversee an expansion into video games, as it considers options including an Apple Arcade-like games bundle  —  Netflix is looking to hire an executive to oversee an expansion into videogames, a sign it is stepping up its efforts …
Ashley Carman / The Verge:
Twitter will soon let US users with 1,000+ followers who've hosted three Spaces in the past 30 days apply to host Ticketed Spaces, with Twitter taking a 20% cut  —  After Apple and Google's cut  —  Twitter's getting ready for the launch of its Ticketed Spaces feature, and today …
Annie Palmer / CNBC:
Amazon is shutting down its standalone Prime Now app and website by the end of the year and moving the fast delivery service to the Amazon app and website  —  - Amazon will discontinue its standalone Prime Now app and website by the end of this year, the company announced Friday.
Kim Lyons / The Verge:
Spotify adds offline playback for playlists, albums, and podcasts on Apple Watch for Premium subscribers; available on Watch Series 3 running WatchOS 6 and up  —  The announcement comes a few days after a similar feature was announced for Wear devices  —  Spotify is adding the ability …
Mark Bergen / Bloomberg:
How Apple, Microsoft, Google, and Amazon are lobbying to kill “right to repair” bills, with half of all bills in 27 US states already voted down or dismissed  —  Justin Millman has always fixed things.  He tinkered with gadgets growing up before opening a repair shop in Westbury …
Parmy Olson / Wall Street Journal:
Sources: DeepMind sought autonomy from Google, aiming to keep its AI from being controlled by a single corporate entity, but Google nixed those plans last month  —  Alphabet cuts off yearslong push by founders of the artificial-intelligence company to secure more independence
Reuters:
Federal Reserve Chair Powell discusses the risks of cryptocurrencies and sets a timeline for a Fed discussion paper on a possible central bank digital currency  —  Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell flagged the risks of cryptocurrencies in an unusual video message on Thursday that also laid …
Engadget:
Facebook's wav2vec Unsupervised, a way to build speech recognition systems that require no transcribed data, may bring automatic translations to more countries  —  Big Tech's AI machinery.  The tech powers the digital assistants on our  —  phones, in  —  cars and in the  —  smart speakers in our homes.
Joseph Cox / VICE:
Leaked emails show that Citizen app is testing an on-demand private security service that will respond to “incidents” as requested by app users  —  Citizen would deploy private security forces at the request of app users, according to documents and sources.  —  Joseph Cox
Mark Gurman / Bloomberg:
Apple implies that Epic may be serving as a stalking horse for Microsoft, seeks an adverse credibility finding for Xbox exec Lori Wright, in Wednesday's filing  —  - Company says 5 Epic Games witnesses have ties to Microsoft  — Apple and Microsoft rivalrly has gathered steam due to trial
Ingrid Lunden / TechCrunch:
Luxembourg-based factory14, which consolidates Amazon Marketplace brands, comes out of stealth with $200M in funding  —  It doesn't feel like a week goes by at the moment that another startup doesn't emerge armed with a huge wallet of cash to pursue a strategy of consolidating …
More: FinSMEs
The Verge:
Twitter is rolling out its new verification program, with revamped categories that include activists and journalists, and previews upcoming changes to profiles  —  It also previewed potential changes coming to profiles  —  Twitter is relaunching its public verification program, allowing anyone to apply for a coveted blue check mark.
Bloomberg:
Sources: CNA Financial, one of the largest insurance companies in the US, paid $40M in late March to regain control of its network after a ransomware attack  —  CNA Financial Corp., among the largest insurance companies in the U.S., paid $40 million in late March to regain control of its network …
Alun John / Reuters:
Hong Kong's FSTB says all crypto exchanges operating in HK should be licensed and can only serve professional investors, and promises to propose new regulations  —  HONG KONG (Reuters) -Cryptocurrency exchanges operating in Hong Kong will have to be licenced by the city's markets regulator …
Issie Lapowsky / Protocol:
Democratic Reps. Trahan and Castor introduce the Social Media DATA Act, which would force large platforms to share ad targeting data with researchers and FTC  —  Facebook's ad library allows researchers to see the content of ads that run on the platform and information on who those ads reach.

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