Elon Musk has decided to create his own chips for artificial intelligence for his Tesla vehicles. He also claimed at the machine learning conference NIPS that Tesla cars will be able to drive safer than humans in two years, and 10 times safer in three years. These are bold claims, and sure excited a bunch of experts at the conference. And given Musk’s track record, they are most likely truthful claims too. Self-driving cars are definitely coming, and will save a lot of lives and prevent injuries.
Amazon Prime Video is now available on the Apple TV. This could be an important moment for Apple and Amazon. What with Amazon preparing a show that is a prequel to The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Amazon will get some paying customers out of the Apple users, who have a good amount of disposable income. It will also allow Apple to have a more fully formed TV offering for its users.
Niantic is preparing to release a new AR game based on “Harry Potter”. Niantic is the same company that created the “Pokemon Go” game for smartphones and tablets. This Harry Potter game will be huge. AR is definitely going to create whole new experiences for users!
Niantic also recently raised $200 million in funding to help it create more special experiences! This company is on a roll. I can’t wait to see this Harry Potter game and the other games they create.
AR (Augmented Reality) is going to explode is usage in the coming years. Having useful uses for AR is a killer feature. For example, Ikea has an app for checking out how an Ikea piece of furniture will look in a room. This type of app will win over more than the millions of fans of Harry Potter (myself included!).
If it wasn’t clear until now that there is a bubble in the tech industry, it is very clear now. Snap Inc.’s shares soared in its initial public offering by almost 50 per cent. This is crazy stuff from a company that Mark Zuckerberg is increasingly trying to emulate with its disappearing messages feature. The only thing that is uncertain is what will happen to this bubble. Will it deflate gradually or burst suddenly? It’s impossible to know but I guess that it will be on a downward trajectory of some kind at some point anyhow. Markets will be markets but what will be more interesting is how Snap Inc.’s hope of growing and changing the company will play out.
Trump only cares about his base of supporters when he carries out his actions or speaks or tweets. He doesn’t care about anyone else. He expects to get enough votes from non-decided voters in swing states in 2020. He just wants to get re-elected in four years.
Trump relaxing banking regulations could sow the seeds of the next financial crisis. I don’t think he understands that regulation is a good thing, as the consumers need to be protected, rather than a bad thing. It seems he takes his orders from Steve Bannon and somehow believes deregulation will cause growth in the short term. This is bad news for the long-term outlook for the world. Hopefully the next US president and government pushes back against this and undoes the damage before it’s too late.
The court judgement of ZeniMax getting $500m dollars for their lawsuit against Oculus will not take Oculus’s product down from the shelves, which is a great thing for the wider VR industry. That ZeniMax won this suit was interesting. It highlights that malpractice is still a part of the entrepreneurial DNA of Silicon Valley (hey, if you want to fulfil your dreams, sometimes you got to fight dirty).
Starbucks hiring refugees is something that has to be commended. These are the kinds of things companies can do to do good. CEO Howard Schultz’s insistence that he will keep up trade with Mexico is also a good thing. Still though, I cannot fully support Starbucks as a business. It’s still a purely capitalistic franchise, rather than a co-operative.
Microsoft are investing $1 billion into security. This is a very good move. Microsoft are doing very well at present. The focus on cloud computing has been a marvellous strategy, and this investment will help it offer a robust and secure cloud and enterprise offering.
The company has also diversified into mobile with its own suite of mobile apps and premium hardware, with its own computers. Its mobile strategy has been paying off big time, but I still am a bit reticent to praise its hardware efforts. It still feels like a mistake to try to take on Apple and other companies in the hardware stakes, though if they get a little success it may be worth it.
With a hard Brexit, Britain is shooting itself in both feet and then trying to dribble like Messi.