Wall Street Journal: Google Will Be Hard Habit to Break

Wall Street Journal (unpaywalled for me): Google Will Be Hard Habit to Break. “The Justice Department has been meeting in recent days with state attorneys general to map out a course for pursuing an antitrust case against the internet-search company owned by Alphabet Inc. The outcome remains highly uncertain given the charged political environment. The Wall Street Journal reports that not everyone is on board with the speed at which U.S. Attorney General William Barr wants to move.”

BBC: Google and Facebook under pressure to ban children’s ads

BBC: Google and Facebook under pressure to ban children’s ads. “Tech firms have been urged to stop advertising to under-18s in an open letter signed by MPs, academics and children’s-rights advocates. Behavioural advertising not only undermines privacy but puts ‘susceptible’ youngsters under unfair marketing pressure, the letter says. It is addressed to Google, Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Microsoft.”

Slate: App-Based Contact Tracing Has Been a Bust. Apple Wants to Try Something New.

Slate: App-Based Contact Tracing Has Been a Bust. Apple Wants to Try Something New.. “So far, attempts to use apps for contact tracing in the U.S. have largely fallen flat. Each state has had to decide whether to issue an app at all, and then what kind of system to use. States that have created apps have struggled to get people to download them at all. But Apple is hoping it might change things.”

Reuters: Australian watchdog to examine competition between Apple, Google app stores

Reuters: Australian watchdog to examine competition between Apple, Google app stores. “Australia’s competition regulator on Tuesday said it would look into the extent of competition between the app stores of Apple Inc AAPL.O and Google, and also examine whether more pricing transparency is needed in the country’s mobile apps market.”

Reuters: Russian lawmaker tries to curb mobile app payouts for Apple and Google

Reuters: Russian lawmaker tries to curb mobile app payouts for Apple and Google . “A Russian lawmaker submitted draft legislation on Tuesday that would cut and cap the commission on the sale of mobile applications by tech giants Apple and Google. The bill, submitted to Russia’s lower house of parliament by lawmaker Fedot Tumusov, stipulates that commissions on the sale of applications be capped at 20%. Apple currently collects a 30% commission on sales in its App Store.”

New York Times: Big Tech’s Domination of Business Reaches New Heights

New York Times: Big Tech’s Domination of Business Reaches New Heights. “American tech titans flew high before the coronavirus pandemic, making billions of dollars a year. Now, the upheaval has lifted them to new heights, putting the industry in a position to dominate American business in a way unseen since the days of railroads.”

Exclusive: Facebook says Apple rejected its attempt to tell users about App Store fees (Reuters)

Reuters: Exclusive: Facebook says Apple rejected its attempt to tell users about App Store fees. “Facebook Inc on Thursday told Reuters that Apple Inc rejected its attempt to tell users the iPhone maker would take a 30% cut of sales in a new online events feature, forcing Facebook to remove the message to get the tool to users.”

Coywolf News: Apple showing signs it may soon launch a search engine to compete against Google Search

Coywolf News: Apple showing signs it may soon launch a search engine to compete against Google Search . “Regulatory pressure, a contentious relationship with Google, and the maturation of Apple’s Siri and iCloud are presenting an opportunity for Apple to create and launch a search engine. There are several signs right now that indicate Apple may be doing just that.”

NiemanLab: Fortnite’s battle with Apple and Google could have an impact on news publishers, too

NiemanLab: Fortnite’s battle with Apple and Google could have an impact on news publishers, too. “The past couple of years have been filled with complaints about the aggregated power of Google, Apple, and a few other tech titans. For app stores, though, the imbalance of power has been too big to prompt any real change. Apple took a 30 percent cut of App Store purchases when it launched in 2008; it still does today. But it’s one thing for small developers to complain; it’s another for Netflix, Epic, Spotify, or Sonos — much less Amazon or Facebook — to raise a fuss, legal or otherwise. Apple cut a special deal to quiet its most potent opponent on that list, Amazon. Epic, though, seems prepared to push this to some sort of legal conclusion.”

CNET: Apple says WordPress doesn’t have to add in-app purchases

CNET: Apple says WordPress doesn’t have to add in-app purchases. “Apple’s remarks come after WordPress founding developer Matt Mullenweg tweeted Friday that Apple was going to cut off updates and bug fixes to the open-source software app unless it committed to supporting in-app purchases for WordPress’ payment plans.”

Fortnite Fallout: Epic Games’ War Against Apple & Google Explained (The Quint)

The Quint: Fortnite Fallout: Epic Games’ War Against Apple & Google Explained. “American video games and software developer Epic Games has sued Apple and Google for their monopolistic and anti-competitive policies and removing its highly-rated multiplayer game Fortnite from their respective app stores. The game was first removed by Apple citing Epic Games’ violation of Apple’s App Store guidelines. Google followed suit.”

Reuters: Virginia touts nation’s first contact tracing app with Apple-Google tech

Reuters: Virginia touts nation’s first contact tracing app with Apple-Google tech. “Virginia on Wednesday launched the first contact tracing app for the novel coronavirus in the United States that uses new technology from Apple Inc (AAPL.O) and Alphabet Inc’s Google (GOOGL.O). The state is betting that the app, COVIDWISE, can help it catch new cases faster, though long delays in getting test results must be overcome in order for it to be effective.”

CNET: Android is finally getting its version of Apple’s AirDrop

CNET: Android is finally getting its version of Apple’s AirDrop. “Android is getting a feature that’s been beloved among iPhone users for years. Google, which makes the Android mobile operating system, on Tuesday said it’s launching a tool called Nearby Share that lets people quickly send files to the devices of people around them. The feature is similar to Apple’s AirDrop, which debuted for Mac computers in 2011, then came to iPhones two years later.”

The Conversation: Lawmakers keen to break up ‘big tech’ like Amazon and Google need to realize the world has changed a lot since Microsoft and Standard Oil

The Conversation: Lawmakers keen to break up ‘big tech’ like Amazon and Google need to realize the world has changed a lot since Microsoft and Standard Oil. “The chief executives of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google testified before Congress on July 29 to defend their market dominance from accusations they’re stifling rivals. Lawmakers and regulators are increasingly talking about antitrust action and possibly breaking the companies up into smaller pieces. I study the effects of digital technologies on lives and livelihoods across 90 countries. I believe advocates of breaking up big technology companies, as well as opponents, are both falling prey to some serious myths and misconceptions.”