Netflix reported its worst slowdown in subscriber growth in eight years as people emerge from their pandemic cocoons. So it’s adding a new attraction to its marquee: Video games. On Tuesday, the video streaming giant announced it will offer video games in its existing subscription plans at no extra cost, but didn’t say when that service will launch or what kind of games it will be developing.
Jeff Bezos, the world’s richest man, and three crewmates soared high above the Texas desert aboard his space venture Blue Origin’s New Shepard launch vehicle on Tuesday and returned to Earth, a historic suborbital flight that helps to inaugurate a new era of private commercial space tourism. The 57-year-old American billionaire flew on a voyage lasting about 10 minutes and 20 seconds to the edge of space.
Virgin Galactic’s Richard Branson is aiming to beat fellow billionaire Jeff Bezos into space by nine days. Branson’s company announced Thursday evening that its next test flight will be July 11 and that its founder will be among the six people on board. The winged rocket ship will soar from New Mexico — the first carrying a full crew of company employees. It will be only the fourth trip to space for Virgin Galactic.
Apple is following through on its pledge to crack down on Facebook and other snoopy apps that secretly shadow people on their iPhones in order to target more advertising at users. The new privacy feature, dubbed “App Tracking Transparency,” rolled out Monday as part of an update to the operating system powering the iPhone and iPad. Once the software update is installed apps will be required to ask and receive consent to track online activities.
The parents of a man who killed himself last year have filed a lawsuit against trading app Robinhood over his death. The lawsuit, first reported by CBS News, said 20-year-old Alex Kearns mistakenly believed he owed $730,000 when he took his own life. Dan and Dorothy Kearns say their son was unable to get help or support from customer services before he died.
Twitter unveiled a feature Monday meant to bolster its efforts to combat misinformation and disinformation by tapping users in a fashion similar to Wikipedia to flag potentially misleading tweets. The new system allows users to discuss and provide context to tweets they believe are misleading or false. The project, titled Birdwatch, is a standalone section of Twitter that will at first only be available to a small set of users.
Apple has made advances in its secret self-driving car project and is set to launch production by 2024, according to reports. The iPhone maker has for years been rumored to be working on a self-driving car program known as Project Titan, although the company has never publicly acknowledged it. Now, according to a report by Reuters, Apple has made enough progress in this project to actually aim to build a vehicle for consumers.
Access to YouTube and Gmail is returning to normal after Google services were hit by a global outage. Monitoring website DownDetector noted a spike in reports of difficulties accessing the sites at around 11.30 GMT. It announced shortly afterwards that an issue, reportedly linked to authentication, had been resolved in most territories and that normal services were resuming where possible.
SpaceX’s Starship prototype has exploded while attempting to land after its test launch from the company’s rocket facility in Boca Chica, Texas. Live video of Wednesday’s test showed the self-guided rocket landing at speed following a controlled descent before disappearing in a ball of flame. Despite the catastrophic end to the six-and-a-half-minute test, SpaceX entrepreneur Elon Musk was thrilled. “Mars, here we come!!” he tweeted.
A report backed by Democratic lawmakers has urged changes that could lead to the break-up of some of America’s biggest tech companies. The recommendation follows a 16-month congressional investigation into Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple. “These firms have too much power, and that power must be reined in,” Democratic lawmakers working on the probe wrote. But Republicans involved in the effort did not agree with the recommendations.