Techmeme
January 26, 2022, 4:40 PM

Top News

Tom Warren / The Verge:
Microsoft plans to launch a public preview of Android apps for Windows 11, taskbar improvements, redesigned Notepad and Media Player apps, and more in February  —  New Notepad and Media Player apps also on the way  —  Microsoft is planning to launch a public preview of its Android apps …
Ivan Lam / Counterpoint Research:
Smartphone sales in China fell 9% YoY in Q4 2021 as full-year sales dropped 2% YoY; Apple became China's top vendor in Q4 after six years with 23% market share  —  - Smartphone sales in China declined (9% YoY) for the third consecutive quarter in Q4 2021.  — Full-year smartphone sales declined …
Ionut Ilascu / BleepingComputer:
Researchers find a 12-year-old vulnerability in Polkit that local attackers can use to gain root privileges on all major Linux distributions; an exploit is out  —  A vulnerability in Polkit's pkexec component that is present in the default configuration of all major Linux distributions …
Dave Lee / Financial Times:
Sources: Amazon has abandoned its campaign of paying warehouse employees to post positive social media messages, started in 2018, after embarrassing backfires  —  Paying warehouse workers to tweet positive comments is dropped after poor reach and embarrassing backfires
Corin Faife / The Verge:
The White House tells agencies to adopt a zero trust cybersecurity strategy, including using hardware-based authentication tools over push notifications or SMS  —  Federal departments will have two months to outline their response  —  The White House released a new cybersecurity strategy Wednesday aimed …
Chance Miller / 9to5Mac:
Apple releases iOS 15.3 and macOS Monterey 12.2 with a fix for the IndexedDB API bug in Safari, as well as iPadOS 15.3, watchOS 8.4, tvOS 15.3, and HomePod 15.3  —  Apple's latest round of software updates is now rolling out to the public. iOS 15.3 is now available to iPhone users …
Frank Chaparro / The Block:
Crypto exchange FTX's American affiliate, FTX.US, raises $400M at an $8B valuation from Paradigm, SoftBank, Temasek, and others, its first outside funding  —  FTX's American affiliate, FTX.US, has joined the crypto unicorn club after closing its first-ever fundraising round.
Chance Miller / 9to5Mac:
After reports of AirTags being used for stalking, Apple releases a Personal Safety User Guide, covering AirTags alerts, information for Android users, and more  —  Apple has launched a new “Personal Safety User Guide” that aggregates details and support documents that can help users “when your personal safety is at risk.”
Jay Peters / The Verge:
Ryan Wyatt, YouTube's gaming head who oversaw big deals to poach Twitch's star streamers, leaves to grow Ethereum scaling startup Polygon's developer ecosystem  —  Ryan Wyatt will be at YouTube until the end of February  —  Ryan Wyatt, YouTube's head of gaming who oversaw some of its big deals …
Mitchell Clark / The Verge:
Valve will release the Steam Deck on February 25 and says reservations will be filled in weekly batches, after supply chain issues delayed its launch last year  —  You'll need a reservation  —  Valve announced that the Steam Deck will go on sale starting February 25th.
Eric Martin / Bloomberg:
The IMF's board urges El Salvador to strip Bitcoin of its status as legal currency due to its large risks, a major obstacle to the country's $1.3B loan request  —  The International Monetary Fund's board urged El Salvador to strip Bitcoin of its status as legal currency due to its large risks …
Bloomberg:
Sources: Meta-backed Diem Association is talking to investment bankers about selling its IP to return capital to investors and giving its engineers a new home  —  The controversial cryptocurrency project that Mark Zuckerberg once defended in front of Congress is unraveling after regulatory pressure.
Kim Zetter / The Verge:
How hacker Joe Grand used a fault-injection attack to crack a Trezor One hardware wallet to recover $2M in cryptocurrency for two friends who forgot the PIN  —  In early 2018, Dan Reich and a friend decided to spend $50,000 in Bitcoin on a batch of Theta tokens, a new cryptocurrency then worth just 21 cents apiece.
Bloomberg:
Swiss bank UBS to acquire robo-adviser Wealthfront, which has 470K+ US clients, for $1.4B in cash, as it aims to use AI to pitch services to the world's wealthy  —  UBS Group AG agreed to buy U.S. robo-adviser Wealthfront for $1.4 billion in cash, as Chief Executive Officer Ralph Hamers tapped …
Stephanie Bodoni / Bloomberg:
The EU General Court overturns a record €1.06B fine for Intel, levied in 2009 over allegedly squeezing out AMD, saying that EU regulators made key errors  —  Intel Corp. won a historic victory in its court fight over a record 1.06 billion-euro ($1.2 billion) competition fine …
Jason Koebler / VICE:
President Biden backs consumers' right to repair and acknowledges the anticompetitive practices of electronics manufacturers  —  “Too many areas, if you own a product, from a smartphone to a tractor, you don't have the freedom to choose how or where to repair that item you purchased.”
Abid Rahman / Hollywood Reporter:
Mike Butcher / TechCrunch:
Estonia-based Veriff, which uses AI-powered video to verify identities, raises a $100M Series C led by Tiger Global and Alkeon  —  Identity verification (IDV) provider Veriff, has raised a $100M Series C round co-led by Tiger Global and Alkeon.  They were joined by existing investors IVP and Accel …
More: FinSMEs
Shannon Liao / Washington Post:
Activision Blizzard declines to voluntarily recognize a union formed by 34 QA testers at Raven Software, after failing to reach an agreement with the CWA  —  Activision Blizzard did not respond to workers' request for recognition of a union formed by quality assurance testers at Raven Software, the workers said Tuesday evening.

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Earlier Picks

Elizabeth Culliford / Reuters:
Source: TwitterTweets: @donie, @policy, @twittersafety, @crush, and @lculbs
Jason Schreier / Bloomberg: