Good morning! This is the tech news you need to know this Thursday.
- Brian Acton, the cofounder of WhatsApp, broke his silence and told Forbes that he left Facebook after tensions with CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg. According to Acton, he left $US850 million on the table by leaving when he did.
- Facebook executive David Marcus described Brian Acton as “low-class” for criticising the firm which made him a billionaire. Marcus said he read statements in Acton’s interview that “differ greatly from the reality I witnessed first-hand.”
- A study reported by Gizmodo shows that Facebook uses phone numbers provided only for security purposes to then target ads at people. Facebook also uses friends’ address books to target people by phone number.
- Payments startup Stripe has raised a $US245 million monster round, making it a $US20 billion company. The money will go toward product development, international expansion, and building out its payments network.
- Facebook announced the $US399 Oculus Quest, a new virtual reality headset that doesn’t require a PC. Mark Zuckerberg announced the Oculus Quest during the Oculus Connect 5 keynote and said it completes the first generation of Oculus products
- Amazon might take on digital TV rivals like Comcast with its own video ad serving product. The company has discussed building a proprietary ad tech product for its own Prime streaming service, then licensing it out.
- Sony is officially giving in and allowing “Fortnite” players on PlayStation 4 to play with people on Android, iOS, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows, and Mac. Up until now, PS4 players couldn’t play “Fortnite” with other console players.
- SurveyMonkey went public Tuesday and saw it stock jump as much as 50% in trading Wednesday. The stock’s big debut came despite the company’s relatively slow revenue growth and ongoing losses.
- Amazon is opening a new physical store that will sell items rated 4 stars and above on its site. The store will be located in the SoHo neighbourhood of New York.
- Facebook executive Adam Mosseri is tipped to become Instagram’s next CEO. Mosseri is a 10-year Facebook loyalist and started out as a product designer at the company.
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