ByteDance asserts it will maintain majority ownership and control over TikTok Global and will not transfer source code or technology to Oracle and Walmart
Ok, here’s what I can tell you. You can still use TikTok. President Trump said, since we last spoke, he has approved Oracle's bid for the US operations of TikTok “in concept.” And so, essentially, the US is delaying the planned TikTok ban by a week, as Oracle and Walmart look to take a 20% stake in TikTok Global's pre-IPO round, as well as, of course, host TikTok’s US user data and computer systems.
US judge in California issues a preliminary injunction halting Commerce Department's order banning downloads of WeChat from Sunday
PS: on the other front of this particular war, a US judge in California has issued a preliminary injunction halting the Commerce Department’s order banning downloads of WeChat. So, again, you’re still able to use WeChat, if you weren’t aware.
Microsoft says it will acquire ZeniMax Media and its game publisher Bethesda Softworks for $7.5B in cash
Huge news in video games. Microsoft said it will acquire ZeniMax Media for $7.5 billion in cash. Now, you might not know the name ZeniMax Media. I certainly didn’t. But I did know this name. Bethesda Softworks. ZeniMax Media owns Bethesda, maker of such gaming franchises as Doom, The Elder Scrolls and Fallout and the upcoming space epic Starfield.
More: Ars Technica
Mobile gaming startup Playco raises $100M Series A at a $1B+ valuation led by Josh Buckley and Sequoia Capital and will launch its first game later in 2020
While we’re on gaming, let me cram an interesting raise in here. Playco is a mobile gaming startup which has been in stealth. It only announced its existence today. Zynga co-founder Justin Waldron is one of the founders. So, that’s notable. It’s also raised a $100 million Series A at a greater than $1 billion valuation. So, that’s a monster series A, and already a unicorn valuation without having launched a product yet. The round was led by Josh Buckley and Sequoia Capital, so that’s notable. Will Smith is involved. All of these are things are flares of notability. So what is Playco doing that is so notable?
Nikola is one of those electric vehicle startups we discussed recently on a weekend bonus episode. Electric vehicle startups not named Tesla, remember? And Nikola is one of those startups focusing more on trucks. Yes, well the founder of Nikola, Trevor Milton has abruptly resigned as Executive Chairman of Nikola amid what the Wall Street Journal is calling “fraud” allegations.
Amazon says Echo and Tile devices will become Bluetooth bridges for Sidewalk, its low-bandwidth, long-range wireless protocol, later this year
Finally today, Amazon says its Echo and Tile devices will, later this year, become Bluetooth Bridges for Sidewalk, its low-bandwidth, long-range wireless protocol. What fascinates me about this is that Amazon Sidewalk is part of a new networking system that will extend the HyperLocal low range systems with Amazon Project Kuiper’s 3,200 satellites to connect high-speed internet wirelessly. Like, if this works, this would have the potential to, someday, make any wireless internet from the telecom companies and their cell towers, redundant, at least for low bandwidth needs. Think of this as the internet for the internet of things.