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Wednesday, January 27, 2021
Chesnot | Getty Images GUANGZHOU, China — Bitcoin smashed through $37,700 to hit a new record high on Thursday helping to lift the total value of the entire cryptocurrency market above $1 trillion for the first time. The digital coin hit an all time high of $37,724.67 at around 11:44 a.m. Singapore time, more than three hours after blowing past $36,000, according to data from Coindesk. Bitcoin was over 5% from a day earlier at around 1:04 p.m Singapore time. The cryptocurrency is up about 29% since the start of 2021 and in the past 12 months has surged over 380%. Meanwhile, the value of the entire cryptocurrency market, which is made up of bitcoin and other digital coins like ether and tether, surpassed $1 trillion for the first time early on Thursday, according to data from Coinmarketcap. Bitcoin's resurgence has been attributed to a number of factors including more buying from large institutional investors. High profile investors like Paul Tudor Jones, for example, have been buying bitcoin. Many bitcoin bulls say the cryptocurrency is akin to "digital gold," a potential safe haven
Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks at Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) at the San Jose Convention Center in San Jose, California on Monday, June 4, 2018. Josh Edelson | AFP | Getty Images Apple's App Store grossed more than $64 billion in 2020, according to an analysis by CNBC. That's up from an estimated $50 billion in 2019 and $48.5 billion in 2018, according to the same analysis, suggesting that App Store sales growth accelerated strongly during the Covid-19 pandemic, as people sheltered at home and spent more time and money on apps and games. App Store revenue grew 28% in 2020, up from 3.1% growth in 2019, according to CNBC's analysis. Apple's App Store is a core growth area for the company. It's reported as part of Apple's Services division, which reported $53.7 billion in sales in Apple's fiscal 2020, which ended in September. The money that Apple makes from its App Store has become a flash point for critics of Apple which argue it has too much power. Apple charges 30% for digital sales through its platform, with a few exceptions. Apple recently altered its
Apple CEO Tim Cook Spencer Platt | Getty Images Apple removed Parler, an app popular with Trump supporters, from its iPhone App Store on Saturday. Apple said that posts on the pro-Trump social network related to the U.S. Capitol riot last week included calls for violence, which violates Apple's rules against objectionable content. "We have always supported diverse points of view being represented on the App Store, but there is no place on our platform for threats of violence and illegal activity," an Apple representative said in a statement. "Parler has not taken adequate measures to address the proliferation of these threats to people's safety. We have suspended Parler from the App Store until they resolve these issues." Google removed Parler from its Android app store, Google Play, on Friday. The removal of the app comes in the wake of the violence at the U.S. Capitol by Trump supporters on Wednesday that left five dead. The violence has renewed calls for social media and technology companies to more closely moderate their platforms, especially when it comes to calls to incite violence. Twitter permanently banned President Donald Trump's
A woman plays at the stand of Xbox during the media day of the Gamescom video games trade fair in Cologne, western Germany, on August 20, 2019. Ina Fassbender | AFP via Getty Images Israeli mobile game developer Playtika is poised to debut on the Nasdaq on Friday with a market cap of over $11 billion. For investors looking to get in on the gaming boom, the IPO marks their first shot in what is shaping up to be a busy year. Playtika, known for its popular casino games, will be followed by kids game site Roblox, which is slated to go public in February. Gaming conglomerate AppLovin has reportedly hired bankers to prepare for a public listing in early 2021, and other high-valued developers like Niantic, Scopely and Jam City are potentially in the pipeline. The coronavirus pandemic of 2020 accelerated what was already a rapid shift to mobile gaming, fueled by a flood of powerful smartphones and tablets into the mainstream and a hefty investment by carriers into faster networks. According to research group SensorTower, the mobile game market grew 26% last year to $79.6
A close up image of a CPU socket and motherboard laying on the table. Narumon Bowonkitwanchai | Moment | Getty Images GUANGZHOU, China — Tencent has pumped more money into a Chinese artificial intelligence (AI) chip start-up as the technology giant bets on the growing domestic industry for semiconductors. It comes as Beijing pushes for more self-reliance in semiconductors amid rivalries between the U.S. and China that have spilt into the technology front. Tencent together with a number of investors including CITIC, CICC Capital and Primavera invested 1.8 billion yuan ($278.5 million) in Shanghai-headquartered Enflame Technology. The start-up has received numerous rounds of funding from Tencent. Enflame Technology makes chips designed to process huge amounts of data to train artificial intelligence systems. The chips are designed for data centers. Over the past few years, China has been looking to ramp up its capabilities in both AI and semiconductors as the tech war with the U.S. continues. Chips are a key strategic focus for Beijing which is looking to wean itself off American technology. But Washington has looked to hurt China's ambitions, blacklisting SMIC, the
Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks at the TIME 100 Summit on April 23, 2019 in New York City. Spencer Platt | Getty Images Apple CEO Tim Cook said on Wednesday that the United States must complete the transition to a Biden administration, and that rioters who participated in an "insurrection" in Washington D.C. must be held responsible. "Today marks a sad and shameful chapter in our nation's history. Those responsible for this insurrection should be held to account, and we must complete the transition to President-elect Biden's administration. It's especially when they are challenged that our ideals matter most," Cook tweeted. The comments were made in a tweet late in the day that a pro-Trump mob invaded the U.S. Capitol, forcing Congress to suspend proceedings to confirm the election of Joe Biden as president. The tweet is Cook's first public statement on the outcome of the 2020 presidential election. Trump has called Cook a friend and the two men have had an open line of communication over the past four years. Other business leaders have also condemned the violence on Capitol Hill, including JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie
WikiLeaks' founder Julian Assange leaves Westminster Magistrates Court in London, Britain January 13, 2020. Henry Nicholls | Reuters LONDON — WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange came one step closer to freedom this week after a British judge ruled that he cannot be extradited to the U.S., where he is wanted over the publication of hundreds of thousands of classified military documents and diplomatic cables in 2010 and 2011. Judge Vanessa Baraitser said extradition would be oppressive due to Assange's mental health. The verdict was a step in the right direction for Assange and his legal team but the 49-year-old remains locked up in a prison in southeast London. His lawyers made a bail application at Westminster Magistrates Court in London on Wednesday but it was denied. "There are substantial grounds for believing that if Mr Assange is released today he would fail to surrender to court to face the appeal proceedings," said Baraitser, according to Reuters. The Australian activist founded WikiLeaks in 2006 to publish news leaks and classified information provided by anonymous sources. Over the years, Assange has won a smattering of journalism awards including The Economist's
U.S. President Donald Trump makes a fist during a rally to contest the certification of the 2020 U.S. presidential election results by the U.S. Congress in Washington U.S, January 6, 2021. Jim Bourg | Reuters President Donald Trump continued tweeting Friday evening using the government-owned @POTUS account, despite having his @realDonaldTrump account permanently suspended by Twitter earlier in the day. "As I have been saying for a long time, Twitter has gone further and further in banning free speech, and tonight, Twitter employees have coordinated with the Democrats and Radical Left in removing my account from their platform, to silence me," Trump wrote in a series of tweets that are no longer visible on the social media service. The tweets were removed from the service almost immediately. It's unclear what steps Twitter took in the handling of the @POTUS account. Arrows pointing outwards screenshot Earlier in the day, the company announced that it would permanently suspend Trump's personal account "due to the risk of further incitement of violence." Twitter specifically noted that Trump's
Fifty and twenty pounds bank notes and a bitcoin logo are seen in this photo illustration. Omar Marques | SOPA Images | LightRocket via Getty Images LONDON — Thinking of investing in a cryptocurrency? Be prepared to lose all your money. That's the message from the U.K.'s Financial Conduct Authority, which on Monday warned investments and lending products related to crypto come with "very high risks." "The FCA is aware that some firms are offering investments in cryptoassets, or lending or investments linked to cryptoassets, that promise high returns," the financial services regulator said. "If consumers invest in these types of product, they should be prepared to lose all their money." The warning from the FCA comes amid wild volatility in the cryptocurrency market. Bitcoin and other virtual currencies plunged on Monday, wiping off some $170 billion from the total value of all cryptocurrencies combined. Bitcoin surged to new records last week, climbing as high as $41,973. Investors increasingly view the digital asset as a hedge against inflation — similar to gold — in times of unprecedented stimulus from governments. But bitcoin's wild rise
Tim Cook, chief executive officer of Apple, speaks at the 2019 Dreamforce conference in San Francisco on November 19, 2019. David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images Apple's board of directors regularly discusses antitrust risks, the company said on Tuesday in an annual filing. The language, which is new in this year's proxy statement, highlights how regulatory pressure and antitrust issues have become a significant risk for Apple as policymakers increasingly scrutinize big technology companies. Apple doesn't have the same antitrust issues that rival companies such as Facebook and Google have, but Apple CEO Tim Cook testified alongside their CEOs in front of Congress last summer about antitrust topics. Cook later said he wanted to "unpeel" Apple from the investigation. The new passage reads as follows: "The Audit Committee and Board regularly review and discuss with management Apple's antitrust risks. Apple's Antitrust Compliance Officer is responsible for the development, review, and execution of Apple's Antitrust Compliance Program and regularly reports to the Audit Committee. These reports cover, among other matters, the alignment of the program with Apple's potential antitrust risks, and the effectiveness of the program's
The Foxconn logo is displayed on a Foxconn building in Taipei on January 31, 2019. Sam Yeh | AFP | Getty Images Foxconn and Chinese carmaker Geely have created a joint venture aimed at selling manufacturing and services to the global auto industry. The deal, which was announced on Wednesday, marks Foxconn's continued expansion into the auto sector and reflects Geely's desire to partner with technology companies. Foxconn and Geely will provide car production, consulting, intelligent driving systems and other services to global automotive enterprises, the two companies said. Taiwanese firm Foxconn is best known as the company that assembles Apple's iPhones. Last year, it launched a platform to help automobile companies make electric cars. And this month, Foxconn signed a deal with Chinese electric carmaker Byton to help produce its first vehicle. Meanwhile, Geely inked a deal with Chinese search giant Baidu to be a minority shareholder in a new standalone electric vehicle company. Geely will be the manufacturing partner in Baidu's new venture. Foxconn and Geely will each hold a 50% stake in their joint venture. In theory, automakers could come to Foxconn and Geely
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is seen testifying remotely during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing titled, "Breaking the News: Censorship, Suppression, and the 2020 Election,? on Facebook and Twitter's content moderation practices, on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., November 17, 2020. Hannah McKay | Reuters Facebook said it plans to reinstate its ban on political ads in Georgia following the state's Senate runoff elections on Tuesday. The company has blocked political ads from running in the U.S. after polls closed on Nov. 3, following the 2020 presidential election as part of its efforts to reduce the spread of misinformation. Last month, the company announced it would create an exception for Georgia in the lead-up to its two senatorial runoffs, which will decide which party controls the Senate. Facebook has not said when it will lift its nationwide temporary political ad ban yet. In 2019, Facebook caused waves in the political world when it said it would allow politicians to use misinformation in their ads, saying that the company supported free speech.