Good morning! Here’s the technology news you need to know this Thursday.
1. Apple CEO Tim Cook compared helping the FBI hack an iPhone used by a terrorist to “the software equivalent of cancer” and said it would be “bad for America” during an interview with ABC News. The comments came during Cook’s first public appearance since the FBI order.
2. Britain’s Committee of Public Accounts believes the amount Google agreed to pay in a tax settlement with the government was “disproportionately small” when compared with the size of the company’s business in the country. In January 2016, Google agreed to pay £130 million in back taxes in Britain — prompting criticism from opposition who claim this amounts to a 3% tax rate.
3. DeepMind, an artificial intelligence company owned by Google, has created a new health unit called DeepMind Health. The subsidiary has teamed up with the Imperial College London and the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust to form a team that will build new medical software underpinned by artificial intelligence.
4. Facebook users can finally start using new animated “Reactions.” To use them, users must press down on the familiar thumbs-up button beneath any post to display all of the new animations. Besides just “Like,” there’s also access to “Love,” “Haha,” “Wow,” “Sad,” and “Angry.”
5. Fintech startups and businesses raised almost $1 billion (£718 million) in funding last year, according to industry body Innovate Finance. A separate report from Ernst & Young (EY) ranked the UK first amongst the world’s seven leading fintech hubs.
6. An overwhelming majority of the UK’s digital startups want to remain in the EU, according to a survey. Of the survey’s 175 respondents, 81% said that the UK should remain in the EU, while 19% said it should leave.
7. Apple is planning to use a free-speech defence in its battle with the FBI over hacking an iPhone, arguing that code counts as speech. A cornerstone of Apple’s public defence so far is that creating this tool for the FBI amounts to a “back door,” which makes all its users less safe.
8. Netflix has launched a new version of its iOS apps that begin auto-playing the next episode of the show a user is watching in the same way that the Netflix web app does. The iOS apps are also said to feature a “more fluid” design.
9. Canary Wharf Group has appointed Ben Brabyn as the new boss of London startup space Level39. Brabyn replaces Eric Van der Kleij, who was the first CEO of Tech City.
10. The guy who sold his startup for $1.26 billion (£904 million) to VMware has been poached by a top venture capital firm. Martin Casado, founder of Nicira and one of the most influential people in the networking business, is joining Andreessen Horowitz as its ninth general partner.
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