1.GOOGLE :Alphabet Inc’s Google said on Wednesday its presence in South Korea equates to nearly 12 trillion won ($10.16 billion) in economic benefits for its users, as the U.S. tech giant faces increased scrutiny from regulators and politicians.
Google’s announcement came a day after South Korea’s antitrust agency fined Google 207 billion won for blocking customised versions of its Android operating system, in the company’s second setback in the country in less than a month.
The Korea Fair Trade Commission said this could be the ninth-biggest fine it has ever imposed.
Google said during an online event that it annually provides 5.1 trillion won worth of benefits for South Koreans through its Play Store, 4.2 trillion won through its search engine service, and 2.5 trillion won through its productivity apps, including Google Docs, citing a report from consulting firm AlphaBeta.
Google added that it also annually provides 10.5 trillion won in economic benefits for South Korean companies.
2.H&M:-Sales at Sweden’s H&M, the world’s second-biggest fashion retailer, increased less than expected in the three months through August.
The company said on Wednesday sales grew 9% from a year earlier, or 14% measured in local currencies, to 55.6 billion crowns ($6.46 billion). Analysts polled by Refinitiv had on average forecast net sales growth of 14%.
3.SNAPCHAT-Snapchat’s owner has hired a longtime online safety advocate as its first global head of platform safety, Snap Inc told Reuters on Wednesday, as the company continues to ramp up efforts around user safety and as social media firms face mounting global pressure from regulators and lawmakers.
Snap said that after a long search it hired Jacqueline Beauchere, who will represent its safety work to regulators, lawmakers and partners and help advise on new policies and initiatives.
Beauchere was at Microsoft Corp for more than 20 years including as its chief online safety officer.
Child safety advocates and U.S. lawmakers have raised alarms on a wide range of issues faced by users of online platforms including mental health impacts and potential abuses from bullying to child sexual exploitation.
“We are committed to helping parents, stakeholders and advocates understand how young people experience our products and how we approach critical issues around safety and trust,” Snap’s vice president of global policy Jen Stout said in a statement.
“There is no one better suited to help us accomplish this than Jacqueline, and this work will only become more important as we deepen our focus into augmented reality and the future of computing,” she said. Beauchere will report to Stout.
Major tech firms are racing to develop smart devices and augmented reality offerings. These raise new challenges around safety and privacy, for example, how such products might invade other people’s private spaces or how companies handle information gathered through these devices.
4.SOFT BANK: SoftBank Group Corp Chief Executive Masayoshi Son on Wednesday said so-called smart robots can revitalise Japan’s economy and competitiveness, doubling down on robotics just as the company’s much-hyped “Pepper” robot prepares to bow out.
“We had a grandiose debut event with Pepper several years ago, now it is hanging its head low,” Son said, standing in front of a projection of a slumping, switched-off Pepper.
The SoftBank founder now sees a future with “smart robots that will replace not just the manufacturing, industrial working population, but the entire working population.”
Son packed his keynote address with videos of humanoid robots running and jumping, as well as canister-shaped machines cleaning floors.
However, he offered no specifics on new investments or market prices of any of the devices, nor did he not touch on SoftBank’s investing pause https://www.reuters.com/business/finance/japans-softbank-reports-39-fall-q1-net-profit-2021-08-10 in China where regulators have dramatically increased scrutiny of technology firms.
Son on Wednesday said SoftBank remains a collaborating partner with Boston Dynamics, and that from Pepper will come a generation of more functional smart robots – or what he called “smabo”, a contraction of “smart” and “robot” in Japanese.
.5.COINBASE :-U.S. cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase Global Inc said on Tuesday it increased the size of its debt offering to about $2 billion from previously announced $1.5 billion, citing market interest.
The offering will be used to invest in product development and potential mergers and acquisitions, the company said.
The fundraising plans come less than a week after Coinbase said U.S. regulators would sue the exchange if it went ahead with plans to launch a program allowing users to earn interest by lending digital assets.