May 15, 2023, 8:05 PM

Top News

Adam Satariano / New York Times:
EU regulators approve Microsoft's $69B Activision Blizzard acquisition after Microsoft made concessions to keep rivals' access to Call of Duty and other games  —  The green light follows objections to the blockbuster deal by American and British regulators on the grounds that it would undercut competition.
Samuel Stolton / Bloomberg:
Docs: in an informal Azure investigation, EU regulators ask rivals and clients if Microsoft leveraged its market power and business info to squeeze competitors  —  Microsoft Corp.'s Azure cloud business has been targeted by the European Union's antitrust arm, amid concerns the US software firm …
Jacob Bogage / Washington Post:
Sources: the IRS quietly built a prototype system to let Americans file tax returns digitally and free of charge, with a pilot slated to launch in January 2024  —  The prototype program developed by the federal government could be available for a small group of taxpayers by January
Ben Thompson / Stratechery:
Google's I/O 2023 suggests that AI is a sustaining innovation for Big Tech; the true fight will be between the major players' centralized models and open source  —  Some things in tech are shocking, but not surprising — think of a CEO of a struggling company losing their job.
Jared Newman / Fast Company:
Pluto TV co-founder Ilya Pozin's Telly opens a waitlist to give away 500K 55-inch 4K HDR TVs, which have a second screen for constantly showing ads, in 2023  —  Would you take a free TV if it constantly ran banner ads beneath everything you watched?  —  That's the proposition for Telly …
Jay Peters / The Verge:
WhatsApp introduces Chat Lock, which lets users put chats in a password- or biometrics-protected folder and hide chats' contents and senders in notifications  —  WhatsApp is getting a new “Chat Lock” feature intended to make it easier to keep conversations more private.
Matt Day / Bloomberg:
Amazon job listings mention an “AI-first initiative to re-architect” search and “reimagining Amazon Search with an interactive conversational experience”  — Inc. plans to bring ChatGPT-style product search to its web store, rivaling efforts by Microsoft Corp …
Todd Spangler / Variety:
MoffettNathanson: US pay TV users fell 7% YoY to 75.5M in Q1 2023, with household penetration at 58.5%, the lowest level since 1992; only YouTube TV grew in Q1  —  As streaming video continues its ascendancy, cable, satellite and internet TV providers in the U.S. turned in their worst subscriber losses …
Stefania Palma / Financial Times:
Phoebe Liu / Forbes:
Zip, which sells procurement management software, raised a $100M Series C led by Y Combinator at a $1.5B post-money valuation, taking its total funding to $181M  —  Zip, a San Francisco-based startup that helps businesses manage spending, announced a fresh round of capital today …

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