Facebook says Libra could use a series of cryptocurrencies pegged to different currencies

A Zuck Buck is displayed on a monitor as David Marcus, head of blockchain with Facebook Inc., right, is questioned by Representative Brad Sherman, a Democrat from California, not pictured, during a House Financial Services Committee hearing in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Wednesday, July 17, 2019.Andrew Harrer | Bloomberg | Getty ImagesFacebook has suggested its Libra project could use multiple cryptocurrencies backed by different existing currencies like the dollar, rather than having one single digital token tied to a basket of currencies.The tech giant had initially proposed one synthetic unit of…

Abu Dhabi is investing hundreds of millions in tech start-ups from the Middle East

Abu Dhabi city skyline, United Arab Emirates.kasto80 | iStock | Getty ImagesABU DHABI – Abu Dhabi is doubling down on its push into the technology sector with a $250 million investment to support start-ups from the Middle East and North Africa region.Mubadala, Abu Dhabi’s state investment arm, announced Monday its new MENA tech funds will invest in companies and venture funds that help boost local tech incubator Hub71.Hub71 was launched earlier this year as part of a broader effort by the government of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to diversify…

Amazon is shipping expired baby formula and granola, putting customers and food brands at risk

Jeff Bezos, founder and chief executive officer of Amazon.com Inc., speaks at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019.Andrew Harrer | Bloomberg | Getty ImagesAmazon’s sprawling marketplace, consisting of millions of third-party sellers, has become a go-to site for many grocery shoppers, especially since the company’s acquisition of Whole Foods over two years ago.But an increasing number of consumers are finding that, just as the broader Amazon Marketplace has a major issue with counterfeits and unsafe products, the grocery section is littered with similarly problematic…

Facebook employees turn to rogue hacker from Hong Kong to learn what other teams are building

Jane Manchun Wong has an incessant need to know every single feature of every single app on her smartphone.Wong, a 25-year-old software engineer in Hong Kong, checks every new line of code any time one of her Android smartphone’s apps get an update. She locates new code, reverse-engineers it and finds new features before they are announced. »I do it mostly for personal amusement, » Wong told CNBC. « If I see the feature, I check if there is any security vulnerability, and if it doesn’t, I tweet it. »This…

Silicon Valley grows more NIMBY against some of its own tech

A protester with the group ‘Raging Grannies’ holds a sign during a demonstration outside of Facebook headquarters on April 5, 2018 in Menlo Park, California.Justin Sullivan | Getty ImagesJust because Silicon Valley makes tech doesn’t mean it wants tech in its own back yard.This week, several Silicon Valley cities proposed clampdowns on Airbnb rentals, facial recognition and cars.The increased pushback comes as companies including Facebook and Google face scrutiny from local residents and lawmakers for their data collection practices and effect on California’s housing crunch. Just like its tech, policies…

How Amazon is cutting the high cost and waste of returns

Returns cost companies millions and create billions of pounds of waste. Now, Amazon is making the process more efficient in hopes of enticing customers with easy returns.Forrester Research estimates 25% of items bought online are returned, with $207 billion in returned commerce goods expected this year. Amazon was dumping millions of pounds of this unused inventory, but last month the company started instead donating some of it to charities in the U.S. and U.K.Free return options are now offered on almost all Amazon orders, with a newly expanded partnership that…

Alphabet’s Wing launches first commercial drone delivery

Walgreens will be the first retailer in the U.S. to test an on-demand drone delivery service with Wing in Christiansburg, Virginia next month.Source: WingAlphabet’s drone unit Wing has officially launched the country’s first commercial drone delivery flight.While on a limited scale, for now, in Christiansburg, Virginia, Friday’s delivery represents a milestone for the company. Wing has spent years working to perfect a drone that can deliver items such as food, coffee and medicine to homes within minutes. It’s also developing a software platform that can be used by multiple aircraft…

Lawmakers criticize Apple CEO Tim Cook for ‘censorship’ of apps in China

Apple CEO Tim Cook gestures after opening the newly renovated Apple Store at Fifth Avenue on September 20, 2019 in New York City.Kena Betancur | AFP | Getty ImagesLawmakers from both parties in the House and Senate criticized Apple CEO Tim Cook on Friday for « censorship » at the behest of China.The politicians were referring to an episode last week in which Apple removed an app called HKmap.live used by people during the pro-democracy protests to identify where roadblocks or police activity was taking place. Apple said at the…

Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook’s top priority is setting up FTC-mandated privacy program

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg speaks at Georgetown University in a ‘Conversation on Free Expression » in Washington, DC on October 17, 2019.Andrew Caballero-Reynolds | AFP | Getty ImagesMark Zuckerberg said on Friday that Facebook’s top priority is to put in place a new privacy program that was mandated after the company’s $5 billion settlement with the Federal Trade Commission in July. »The most critical thing that we’re working on is implementing this program, » said Zuckerberg, in an appearance on Fox’s Daily Briefing with Dana Perino.The agreement was part of…

Tech leaders pay tribute to Oracle’s Mark Hurd, who died on Friday

Mark Hurd, co-chief executive officer of Oracle Corp., speaks during the Oracle OpenWorld 2014 conference in San Francisco on September 29, 2014.David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty ImagesTributes from technology leaders poured in for Mark Hurd, who died on Friday at age 62, just weeks after announcing that he was taking a medical leave of absence from the company he co-led starting in 2014.Hurd, an industry veteran who was CEO of Hewlett-Packard before joining Oracle as president in 2010, was hailed by fellow tech executives, including some former rivals. »We…

Mark Hurd, co-CEO of Oracle, dies at 62

Co-CEO of Oracle Mark Hurd died on Friday, CNBC confirmed.Hurd announced a leave of absence from Oracle in September 2019 due to unspecified health reasons. Oracle stock had gone up about 37% since he and Safra Catz were appointed as CEOs in September 2014. »Though we all worked hard together to close the first quarter, I’ve decided that I need to spend time focused on my health, he said in the announcement of his leave. « I love Oracle and wish you all success during my absence. »During Hurd’s five…

Snap just got an upgrade, but analysts warn TikTok is a looming risk in the fight for ad dollars

Evan Spiegel, co-founder and CEO of SnapchatGetty ImagesBank of America Merrill Lynch analysts upgraded Snap to a « buy » on Friday, but warned that the rise of social media rival TikTok could be a risk to the call.TikTok, which is owned by Beijing-based ByteDance, is a mobile app on which users can share and easily edit short videos. Across its suite of apps and around the globe, ByteDance now claims 700 million daily active users. Meanwhile, Snap said its user base grew to 203 million daily active users in…

History will not be on Facebook’s side, no matter what Zuckerberg says

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg speaks at Georgetown University in a ‘Conversation on Free Expression » in Washington, DC on October 17, 2019.Andrew Caballero-Reynolds | AFP | Getty ImagesIn Mark Zuckerberg’s view, this funky political moment we’re living through is just a temporary blip. And Facebook’s role in that moment — allowing election interference, fake news and hate speech to spread across its network of more than 2 billion users — will ultimately look great in the history books.In his address at Georgetown University Thursday, Zuckerberg detailed his thoughts on free…

Warren slams Zuckerberg’s speech, saying Facebook’s political ad policy could help Trump win again

Senator Elizabeth Warren, a Democrat from Massachusetts and 2020 presidential candidate (L), and Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook.Bridgett Bennet | Bloomberg | Getty ImagesSen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., took another jab at Mark Zuckerberg Thursday, accusing the Facebook CEO of helping Donald Trump win the presidential election in 2016 and aiding his re-election at a profit. »Facebook is actively helping Trump spread lies and misinformation, » Warren said in a tweet, adding that Facebook is « unprepared » to deal with the 2020 election.Warren lodged her latest attack after Zuckerberg gave…

Samsung admits to major security flaw in its phones that lets anyone bypass fingerprint sensors

Samsung Galaxy Note 10+Todd Haselton | CNBCSamsung on Friday explained a major security flaw that affects its Galaxy S10 and Galaxy Note 10 family of phones. The flaw, which surfaced on Thursday, could potentially let anyone’s fingerprint unlock a phone. »This issue involved ultrasonic fingerprint sensors unlocking devices after recognizing 3-dimensional patterns appearing on certain silicone screen protecting cases as users’ fingerprints, » Samsung said, referring to the in-screen fingerprint reader on its newest phones. « To prevent any further issues, we advise that Galaxy Note10/10+ and S10/S10+/S10 5G users…

Alibaba’s Jack Ma spent 10 years preparing for his retirement

When Alibaba’s founder Jack Ma retired from the company last month, it was not a decision he took lightly.The 55-year-old announced in September 2018 that he would step down as executive chairman in 12 months’ time, bringing an end to his 20 years at the helm of the tech giant. But, he recently revealed, it was a plan he’d had in mind for more than a decade.Speaking at the Forbes Global CEO Conference on Tuesday, Ma said he was first awoken to the idea of retiring in 2004, when a…

Google appoints former Obama health official Karen DeSalvo to new chief health officer role

An employee passes the Google logo.Carsten Koall/Getty ImagesGoogle confirmed on Thursday that it’s hired Karen DeSalvo, a former health official in the Obama administration, as its first chief health officer.The addition of DeSalvo, who’s spent the past two years teaching at the University of Texas at Austin’s Dell Medical School, comes weeks after Alphabet tapped former U.S. Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Robert M. Califf to lead the company’s health and strategy policy.Both Califf and DeSalvo will start later this year.Google and parent company Alphabet are investing broadly in the health…

Apple CEO Tim Cook calls on the Senate to pass immigration reform

Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook greets customers at the grand opening of the new Apple Carnegie Library store in Washington, May 11, 2019.Joshua Roberts | ReutersApple CEO Tim Cook on Thursday encouraged the U.S. Senate to pass legislation that would phase out per-country limits on green cards. »Immigrants make this country stronger and our economy more dynamic. As a first step toward needed comprehensive reform, I urge the Senate to move quickly to pass the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act, » Cook tweeted. « The contributions of these workers…

Mobile bank Chime goes dark for millions of customers as it seeks $5 billion valuation

Chris Britt, CEO, ChimeSource: ChimeChime, the leading branchless bank in the U.S., is in the midst of a service outage that has left millions of customers without access to their accounts.Issues cropped up Wednesday, leaving users stranded at restaurants, parking garages and gas stations, unable to use their debit cards or pay their bills, according to interviews and complaints posted to the bank’s Twitter account.Card transactions and ATM withdrawals have since been restored, and employer deposits are posting, Chime said Thursday in a statement. But the main touchpoint for Chime’s…

Zuckerberg blasts Facebook rival TikTok for censorship in China, and he might be right

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg meets Founder and Executive Chairman of Alibaba Group Jack Ma (not pictured), at the China Development Forum in Beijing, China, March 19, 2016. Shu Zhang | ReutersIn his speech today at Georgetown University on free speech, Mark Zuckerberg briefly called out Facebook’s young Chinese-owned competitor TikTok. »While our services like WhatsApp are used by protesters and activists everywhere due to strong encryption and privacy protections, on TikTok, the Chinese app growing quickly around the world, mentions of these protests are censored, even in the U.S.,…

Airbnb’s cash numbers could show that it’s not another WeWork in the making

Brian Chesky, CEO and co-founder of Airbnb, speaks to the Economic Club of New York at a luncheon at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S. March 13, 2017.Mike Segar | ReutersAirbnb, the room-sharing site that plans to go public next year, has more than $3 billion on its balance sheet, according to a person familiar with the matter.Following a report from the Information earlier on Thursday, which showed the company’s loss doubled in the first quarter from a year earlier, Airbnb’s cash position could soothe investors…

NBA-China controversy shows why US needs to be careful about Huawei, FCC commissioner says

The recent NBA-China controversy illuminates why the U.S. must cautiously approach any decision to allow Huawei’s 5G technology into the country, FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr said Thursday on CNBC. »This NBA issue over the last couple weeks shows how China can leverage all sorts of different levers to exert and have people toe its own political line, » Carr said on « Squawk Alley. » »So I think that is a threat that that same type of influence could be exerted through Chinese-owned equipment in the U.S. market, which is…

WeWork could run out of cash by mid-November — here’s what would happen next

Adam Neumann, co-founder and chief executive officer of WeWork, in April 2018.Jackal Pan | Visual China Group | Getty ImagesLast year WeWork boasted of becoming the biggest private tenant in Manhattan, London and Washington, D.C. Those feats have now become an albatross, and WeWork’s biggest investor, SoftBank, is scrambling to keep the co-working space provider from spiraling into bankruptcy.Just nine months ago, WeWork was valued at $47 billion in a SoftBank-led financing round. Looking at an imminent IPO, the company also rebranded itself to the We Company, because « we…

Apple TV+ will rack up over 100 million subscribers in its first year, Barclays predicts

Tim Cook, chief executive officer of Apple Inc., smiles while speaking about Apple TV+ during an event at the Steve Jobs Theater in Cupertino, California, U.S., on Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019.David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty ImagesApple’s forthcoming streaming service could rack up over 100 million subscribers in a year, Barclays analysts estimated in a note on Thursday.Apple TV+ launches on Nov. 1 for $4.99 per month, offering original shows bankrolled by Apple. It’ll also be free for a year if you buy a new Apple gadget.It’s entering a…

Watch Mark Zuckerberg deliver a speech on free expression at Georgetown University

.embedPlayer_container iframe{width:100%} @media screen and (max-width: 640px){ .embedPlayer_container iframe { height: -webkit-calc(100vw * 9/16); height: -moz-calc(100vw * 9/16); height: calc(100vw * 9/16); } } [embedded content] Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is back in Washington, D.C., today for a speech at Georgetown University on free expression. A Q&A will follow the speech.This is his second trip to D.C. in a month and comes one week before he is expected to testify before the House Financial Services Committee on October 23 regarding Facebook’s impact on the financial services and housing sectors.Zuckerberg is…

Netflix shares start to fade on fears of slowing subscriber growth

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings is pictured on May 3, 2018 in Lille, northern France during the first edition of the TV Series Mania festival.Philippe Huguen | AFP | Getty ImagesShares of Netflix popped as much as 9% in early trading on Thursday following the company’s third-quarter earnings report, but the stock pared some of its gains as it appeared some investors may be reassessing their views around slowing subscriber growth. By Thursday afternoon, the stock showed gains of less than 4% for the day.The company reported mixed results for the…

Airbnb’s quarterly loss reportedly doubled in Q1, a bad sign as investors grow wary of money-losers

Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky.John van Hasselt | Corbis | Getty ImagesAirbnb’s losses doubled year-over-year in the first quarter to $306 million, as the home-sharing start-up ramps up marketing spend ahead of a possible IPO in 2020, according to a report in The Information.The company’s sales and marketing investments rose 58% year-over-year to $367 million in the first quarter and marketing spend is expected to come in above the $1.1 billion spent in 2018, The Information said, citing undisclosed financial data. Revenue reportedly grew 31% year-over-year to $839 million, while expenses…

HBO’s ‘Silicon Valley’ final season riffs on Big Tech’s Washington problems and it hits too close to home

Silicon Valley cast discusses series finale in San FranciscoHBO will premier its sixth and final season of « Silicon Valley » later this month, but its cast says the satirical series is ending at a time when it’s hitting closer to home than ever. »We’re a little sentimental because we just wrapped production, but also because we feel like this story is just getting started, » said head of HBO comedy programming Amy Gravitt at a premiere event in San Francisco Wednesday, referring to ongoing issues facing Big Tech.The season…

Samsung fingerprint sensor security flaw lets anyone unlock a Galaxy S10 phone

The new Samsung Galaxy S10CNBCSamsung said Thursday that it is working to fix a vulnerability that would allow anyone to unlock a Galaxy S10 device using a fingerprint.The flaw was first reported by a U.K. couple who discovered the husband could unlock his wife’s phone using his fingerprint, according to the BBC. Samsung’s fingerprint ID system allows users to open their phones as well as make payments and applications on the phone using a finger or thumbprint, if the system is enabled.Samsung said in a statement to CNBC that a…

Netflix finally admitted two things we already knew about the streaming wars

Netflix has finally admitted to what we all knew. With the streaming wars kicking off in just a few weeks, Netflix faces serious competition for the first time since it started streaming over a decade ago.And that competition from the impending launches of Disney+ and Apple TV+, along with several others from major media brands like HBO and NBC, could have a negative impact on Netflix’s subscriber growth.Netflix disclosed these issues following its mixed earnings report Wednesday that showed a beat on earnings, but a miss on subscribers. The company…