Techmeme
January 20, 2022, 1:37 PM

Top News

Financial Times:
Sources: Meta plans to let users create and sell NFTs on Facebook and Instagram, display NFTs on user profiles, and is considering an NFT marketplace  —  Facebook's parent draws up plans to allow users to create and sell non-fungible tokens, seeking to enter hype-fuelled $40bn market
Alex Heath / The Verge:
Sources: Google's AR headset could launch in 2024, powered by a custom processor, resembling ski goggles, and without a tethered connection to external power  —  Meta may be the loudest company building AR and VR hardware.  Microsoft has HoloLens.  Apple is working on something, too.
Andrew Asmakov / Decrypt:
Crypto.com says its breach affected 483 users, resulting in unauthorized cryptocurrencies withdrawals worth ~$33.84M, and all users were reimbursed the same day  —  Cryptocurrency exchange Crypto.com has lost roughly $34 million in a recent security incident, according to a post-mortem released on Thursday.
Kurt Schlosser / GeekWire:
Amazon Style, the company's first physical fashion store, will launch in LA later this year, with an app that lets shoppers send items to the fitting room  —  Move over books and groceries, Amazon's latest foray into physical retail is focused on fashion.  —  The e-commerce giant announced Thursday …
Salvador Rodriguez / Wall Street Journal:
Twitter will let iOS users of its Blue subscription service use NFTs as their profile pictures  —  Service will be available to some users of the company's Blue subscriber service  —  Twitter Inc. will start allowing some users to use nonfungible tokens as their profile pictures …
Ryne Hager / Android Police:
Google launches a limited beta of Google Play Games for PC, which brings Android games to Windows 10 and Windows 11, in Hong Kong, South Korea, and Taiwan  —  You'll need a relatively powerful computer for now.  And for once, the US isn't getting a Google thing first
Miles Kruppa / Financial Times:
Sources: a16z plans to raise $3.5B for its latest cryptocurrency fund and up to $1B for a fund focused on seed investments in digital asset startups  —  Planned fundraising illustrates how Silicon Valley firms are fuelling boom in cryptocurrency start-ups  —  Andreessen Horowitz plans …
Mack DeGeurin / Gizmodo:
This summer the IRS will require users to log in via ID.me, which uses facial recognition in its authentication process, to file taxes, make payments, and more  —  You will have to submit sensitive government documents, your Social Security number, credit history, and a face scan to ID.me, a third-party company.
Reuters:
Russia's central bank proposes banning cryptocurrency use and mining, citing threats to financial stability, citizens' wellbeing, and monetary sovereignty  —  Russia's central bank on Thursday proposed banning the use and mining of cryptocurrencies on Russian territory …
Mark Mulligan / MIDiA Research:
Research finds the base of global music subscribers grew to 523.9M by the end of Q2 2021, up 26.4% YoY; Spotify's market share dropped from 33% to 31%  —  MIDiA's annual music subscriber market shares report is now available here (see below for more details of the report).  Here are some of the key findings.
Lydia Moynihan / New York Post:
Sources: TikTok ousted its marketing chief Nick Tran after he went “rogue” with plans like TikTok Kitchen, NFTs by Lil Nas X and others, and TikTok Resumes  —  TikTok's marketing chief has been ousted after blindsiding top management with a series of increasingly bizarre campaigns, The Post has learned.
Sean Lyngaas / CNN:
Red Cross says a cyberattack on a vendor for over 60 Red Cross and Red Crescent societies compromised the personal data of 515,000+ “highly vulnerable people”  —  (CNN)A cyberattack on a contractor used by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has compromised …
Mahira Dayal / The Information:
TikTok says it is testing allowing creators to charge subscriptions for their content  —  TikTok is testing the idea of allowing its creators to charge subscriptions for their content, a spokesperson told The Information.  Earlier Wednesday, rival Instagram announced it was offering paid subscriptions to a small group of influencers.
Wall Street Journal:
Sources: in recent weeks, CEO Bobby Kotick suggested Activision Blizzard make an acquisition, including of trade publications like Kotaku and PC Gamer  —  After a lawsuit and a Journal report, the company's stock was falling, board members were getting anxious—and the tech giant was ready to take a gamble
Mark Bergen / Bloomberg:
Internal email: Google is creating a unit under its Labs division for blockchain and other distributed tech, led by engineering VP Shivakumar Venkataraman  —  Google is forming a group dedicated to the blockchain and related technologies under a newly appointed executive who has spent …
Abner Li / 9to5Google:
Google says it will transition organizations using G Suite legacy free edition to an upgraded Google Workspace paid subscription starting on July 1  —  In 2020, G Suite became Google Workspace as part of a mass reorganization of the company's apps for the “future of work.”
Kate Park / TechCrunch:
South Korea's Greenlabs, which wants to digitize the entire value chain of agriculture space from crop production to distribution, raises a $140M Series C  —  Greenlabs, a South Korean agtech startup, announced this week it has closed a $140 million Series C led by BlueRun Ventures …
Emma Roth / The Verge:
AT&T begins its 5G C-band rollout in eight US metro areas, including Austin and Chicago, after delaying rollouts around airports due to safety concerns  —  The company is lighting up towers in just eight locations amidst pushback from airlines  —  AT&T is lighting up its expanded 5G service …
Kyle Alspach / VentureBeat:
Virtru, which offers encryption for data shared over email, SaaS apps, and more, raises a $60M Series C, bringing its total funding to $136.8M  —  Data security and privacy firm Virtru, which today announced raising a $60 million series C funding round, said that usage of its encryption platform …

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