Good morning! Here’s the technology news you need to know this Thursday.
1. Apple has reportedly signed a contract worth between $400 million (£280 million) and $600 million (£421 million) to use Google’s Cloud Platform. The deal is likely to be bad news for cloud market leader and existing Apple cloud partner Amazon Web Services.
2. The European Commission has asked tax authorities in Ireland for additional information on Apple’s tax affairs in the country. The Commission is concerned that Apple may have received special treatment or subsidies from the Irish government.
3. UK Chancellor George Osborne has announced a tax break for “micro-entrepreneurs” that use sharing economy platforms like Airbnb. The tax cut for Airbnb users comes as Osborne clamps down on buy-to-let landlords.
4. A FedEx VP told analysts that it would take too long and cost too much for Amazon to build a delivery service that competes with its own. He said Amazon would have to spend “tens of billions.”
5. Slack CEO Stewart Butterfield is not interested in hiring salespeople to help his fast-growing messaging startup — currently valued about $4 billion (£2.8 billion) — sell to companies. Instead, Butterfield said Slack intends to keep relying on its viral growth.
6. Telegram, a self-destructing messaging app, has reportedly become popular among San Francisco public officials as a way to evade public-records laws. The app was created by Pavel Durov after he fled Russia with the $260 million (£183 million) fortune he amassed from creating the social network VKontakte.
7. The cofounder of Uber says he is investing money and time into artificial intelligence in the belief that it’s going to revolutionise the world. Oscar Salazar thinks AI will have the biggest impact on education, healthcare, and transportation.
8. A smart doorbell startup backed by Sir Richard Branson has raised $61 million (£43 million) from venture capitalists like Kleiner Perkins. Ring has built a doorbell that lets you see and interact with who’s at your door through your smartphone.
9. The US government claims it has arrested the man behind the 2014 leak of hundreds of naked photographs of celebrities, including Kate Upton, Jennifer Lawrence, and Ariana Grande. Ryan Collins, 36, from Pennsylvania, will plead guilty to a felony violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.
10. Funding Circle, a UK fintech company worth over £1 billion, is dedicating an entire floor of its new headquarters in London to younger startups. Each desk will cost around £499 a month.
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