Tech Roundup — Apple, Google, Jack Ma, VMWare, and TensorFlow

Every Big Tech story nowadays feels like an antitrust story. Something to keep in mind.

Apple will reduce App Store cut to 15 percent for most developers starting January 1st by Nick Statt

“The new App Store Small Business Program, as it’s called, will allow any developer who earns less than $1 million in annual sales per year from all of their apps to qualify for a reduced App Store cut of 15 percent, half of Apple’s standard 30 percent fee, on all paid app revenue and in-app purchases.”

This costs Apple very little (impacted businesses accounted less than 5% of App Store revenue last year) and wins them (some) applause. Now that there’s a leak in the App Store dam, will it break?

Google Pay gets a major redesign with a new emphasis on personal finance by Frederic Lardinois

“Google is also partnering with 11 banks to launch a new kind of bank account in 2021. Called Plex, these mobile-first bank accounts will have no monthly fees, overdraft charges or minimum balances.”

It’s sad that Google Pay only has 150 million users in 30 countries after five years. I’m not sure if Plex can significantly grow that figure, but just like with health care, tech companies are clearly growing interested in banking. The line between tech and fintech continues to blur.

Jack Ma vs. the Party: Inside the collapse of the world’s biggest IPO by Henny Sender

“Indeed, it was Chinese President Xi Jinping who personally built up a consensus to take action against the Ant IPO just days before its debut, according to two sources with knowledge of the matter. ‘Only he could have made the decision,’ said one. ‘Nobody else would have the authority to do so.’”

Every business leader in China should be concerned about this.

VMware’s blockchain platform is ready for the enterprise by Natalie Gagliordi

“VMware is targeting financial services, healthcare and federal agencies as key customer markets for its distributed ledger technology.”

It will be fascinating to watch what enterprises choose to use this blockchain platform for, if anything.

Apple releases forked version of TensorFlow optimized for macOS Big Sur by Kyle Wiggers

“TensorFlow users can get up to 7 times faster training on the 13-inch MacBook Pro with M1, Apple claims.”

We had to correct our story here to say that Apple, rather than Google, released this version of TensorFlow. Fascinating to see Apple play a bigger role with respect to AI developers, especially with an open-source library it didn’t create.

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Executive Editor @VentureBeat Formerly @TheNextWeb @ZDNet @CNET @TechSpot @ArsTechnica

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Emil Protalinski

Emil Protalinski

Executive Editor @VentureBeat Formerly @TheNextWeb @ZDNet @CNET @TechSpot @ArsTechnica

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