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Vergecast: Roku CEO Anthony Wood, MacBook Pro benchmarks, and Google gets fined

July 20, 2018 Alex 0

We’ve got a super stuffed episode of The Vergecast this week.

First, the biggest news in tech right now is the European Commission’s ruling that Google has been unfairly using Android to push Google search on users, giving it an unfair advantage. Nilay, Dieter, and Paul sit down and discuss the implications.

In the second half of the show, Dieter discusses some of the new MacBook Pro benchmarks that claim the processors may throttle performance due to cooling issues.

Nilay got an exclusive interview with Roku CEO Anthony Wood, so we’ve included that in this episode as well.

Also, our culture coverage continues this week with another roundup by Megan Farokhmanesh and Bijan Stephen.

There’s even a whole lot more in between that — like…

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Blavity raises $6.5 million Series A round led by GV

July 20, 2018 Alex 0

Blavity, the digital lifestyle media company geared toward black millennials, recently closed a $6.5 million Series A round led by GV with participation from Comcast Ventures, Plexo Capital and Baron Davis Enterprises. As part of the investment, GV Partner John Lyman is joining Blavity’s board of directors.

As the media landscape continues to change, with some businesses up for sale, a prominent black media publication moving under new leadership and other ones shuttering, Blavity is at a point where it’s thinking about what phase two looks like, Blavity CEO Morgan DeBaun told TechCrunch over the phone.

“There’s just a lot going on where it’s important now more than ever that Blavity is committed and has the resources it needs to grow as a publication,” DeBaun told me.

Most of the funding will go toward opening a new office that is strictly focused on engineering and data, DeBaun said. As part of that, Blavity intends to triple the size of its engineering team. The office, which wil..

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The Pain and Potential of Making a 180-Degree Policy Shift

July 20, 2018 Alex 0

Photo-hosting service Photobucket in May quietly restored third-party hosting of photos, reversing its unpopular year-old policy that required users to pay nearly $400 in subscription fees for hosting privileges. Many irate users claimed their photos were “taken hostage.” Hosted photos on blogs, forums and other sites were replaced by an image of a dial indicating the hosted data quota had been surpassed. Users were not given advance notice. Instead the company sent out emails with the message, “Some features on your account will be
disabled.”

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EBay paid $573M to buy Japanese e-commerce platform Qoo10, filing reveals

July 20, 2018 Alex 0

EBay is a very distant second behind Amazon when it comes to e-commerce sales in the U.S., but abroad — and in particular in Asia — it is willing to invest to grow its footprint in a targeted way. In February, eBay paid a total of $573 million to acquire Qoo10, a Japanese sales platform, according to the company’s quarterly earnings filing.

In more detail, the deal consisted of $306 million in cash and the relinquishment of about $266 million in shares in Giosis, a pan-Asian e-commerce marketplace business originally founded as a joint venture with Korea’s Gmarket. Qoo10, which claims two million shoppers, was originally part of Giosis.

The acquisition is similar to a deal eBay did in Korea in 2001 when it purchased Internet Auction Co and linked the Korean service up to its global network of buyers and sellers. That integration has been successful, and today South Korea is eBay’s fourth largest market based on revenue behind only the U.S., Germany and UK, respectively.

Although the..