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Here's the latest tech news from the last 24 hours:
🔍 Microsoft faces EU antitrust investigation over Teams and Office bundling
💸 Meta's Reality Labs reports over $21 billion in losses since start of 2022
🐦 Former Twitter Blue chief criticizes Musk's impulsive management style
🔬 Skepticism surrounding 'biggest physics discovery of a lifetime' in superconductor study
🚀 NASA and Pentagon make serious move toward space-based nuclear propulsion
🔍 Microsoft faces EU antitrust investigation over Teams and Office bundlingLINK
The European Commission has launched an investigation into Microsoft's potential violation of EU competition rules, following a complaint from Slack about Microsoft bundling Teams with its product suites.
Microsoft previously tried to prevent the probe by agreeing to remove Teams from its Office suite, but the Commission still expressed concerns about limiting customer choice and interoperability with competing products.
This is not the first time Microsoft has faced scrutiny from the European Commission, having previously been fined €561 million ($625 million) for a browser choice issue in 2013; the current investigation does not have a specified decision deadline.
💸 Meta's Reality Labs reports over $21 billion in losses since start of 2022LINK
Meta's Reality Labs unit, responsible for developing virtual and augmented reality technologies for the metaverse, reported a $3.7 billion operating loss for the second quarter.
The unit's Q2 sales were $276 million, down from $339 million in Q1, and underperformed analyst projections of $421 million in sales and $3.5 billion in operating losses.
Despite the losses in Reality Labs, Meta's shares rose about 5% after it reported an 11% increase in revenue, driven by a rebound in advertising and a promising sales forecast for Q3.
🐦 Former Twitter Blue chief criticizes Musk's impulsive management styleLINK
Esther Crawford, the former head of Twitter Blue, criticized the previous management of Twitter for its bureaucratic nature, stating that progress often required political maneuvering and excessive levels of approval.
Despite concerns, Crawford expressed cautious optimism about Elon Musk's acquisition of Twitter, noting Musk's unpredictable demeanor and tendency to trust his gut instincts or random feedback over internal advice, which created a challenging work environment.
Crawford, who went viral for sleeping in the office while trying to meet a project deadline, said she was willing to do whatever she asked of her team and wouldn't bet against Musk's leadership due to his intelligence and financial resources.
🔬 Skepticism surrounding 'biggest physics discovery of a lifetime' in superconductor studyLINK
Korean scientists claim to have produced a new superconductor, called LK-99, which works at room temperature and ambient pressure, a potential breakthrough in modern physics.
This superconductor could have significant applications in areas such as energy, transportation, and communication, due to the reduced energy loss it offers in electrical circuits.
However, experts have urged caution as the findings, though causing a stir on social media, have not yet undergone peer review or been replicated in other laboratories, and thus require further scrutiny and testing.
🚀 NASA and Pentagon make serious move toward space-based nuclear propulsionLINK
NASA is partnering with the US Department of Defense to launch a nuclear-powered rocket engine into space as early as 2027, a move aimed at improving efficiency for in-space transportation and Mars exploration.
The project, with an investment of $300 million, will rely on nuclear thermal propulsion, where a nuclear reactor rapidly heats up a propellant to create thrust; however, engineering and regulatory challenges remain.
Lockheed Martin has been selected as the primary contractor for the project, which aims to store liquid hydrogen as propellant in ultra-cold state for a couple of months and test the nuclear engine in zero gravity.
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Meta's Q2 earnings exceeded estimates, reflecting digital advertising rebound, with user engagement, revenue, and net income rising, despite increased expenses and significant layoffs.LINK
Amidst the SAG-AFTRA/WGA strike, Netflix is hiring AI developers for high-paying roles to leverage its Machine Learning Platform, amidst Hollywood's AI concerns.
Tesla allegedly inflated EV range estimates via algorithms directed by CEO Elon Musk, prompting owner concerns and service requests, according to a Reuters investigation.
Waymo is delaying its autonomous trucking initiatives to focus on making its One ride-hailing service commercially successful, citing rising demand for its robotaxis.LINK
Indonesia temporarily blocked Musk's rebranded Twitter, X.com, due to previous owners' violation of content laws; X is negotiating for restoration of access.LINK
X (formerly Twitter) is demanding advertisers spend at least $1,000 monthly on ads to retain verification, a move Musk justifies as anti-scam measure.LINK
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