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Daily Authority: 💲 Google's record-breaking settlement
🥳 Good morning! Welcome to Tuesday’s Daily Authority. Things seem quite quiet on the tech news front in the run-up to Black Friday, but I’m excited for Friday’s launch of The Devil in Me, the next installment in the Dark Pictures Anthology! But first, the day’s tech headlines…
Pay up, Google
It’s not the first time that Google’s been in legal hot water this year, but the settlement of this latest lawsuit sets a new record.
- An internet privacy lawsuit from earlier in the year is finally settling, with Google paying to the tune of $392 million.
- The case was first launched back in January, with attorney generals from multiple states alleging Google had deceived users by collecting their location data without permission, even when those users thought they had location tracking turned off.
- The settlement sets a new record for internet privacy settlements in the US.
- Going forward, Google will also need to be clearer about its tracking.
Out of the fire, into the frying pan
Google still has plenty of other pending lawsuits, though.
- That includes one filed last month by the attorney general for Texas, claiming Google collected biometric data without user consent.
- In October, Google paid $85 million to settle a historic privacy lawsuit dating back to May 2020, accusing the tech giant of harvesting location data and using the information to rake in advertising revenue.
- Back in September, Google faced a 25 billion Euro lawsuit in the UK and EU over anticompetitive conduct in the digital advertising market.
Don’t worry, Google; you’re not alone
It’s not just Google coming under fire for privacy issues.
- Earlier this week a class action lawsuit was filed against Apple for tracking users’ activity even when they had data sharing settings turned off.
- Twitter’s hit the headlines for alleged privacy violations several times. In August 2022, CNET reported on a proposed lawsuit filed by two Twitter users who claimed that the company had shared their phone numbers and email addresses with advertisers without consent.
It seems privacy is a hot topic these days — our Robert Triggs weighed in on Google’s privacy issues following I/O 2022, we asked whether selling your privacy for a cheaper phone was a good idea, and we dove into smart home privacy, too.
👋 The wait is over: You can finally message yourself on WhatsApp! (Android Authority).
📱 Google Pixel foldable phone renders leak, but we’ve been burned before (Android Authority).
🐦 Elon Musk ended Twitter SMS 2FA , though it now appears to be back up for some (Android Authority)
🕗 A timely addition: YouTube TV gets a tiny new feature that makes a huge difference (Chrome Unboxed).
⌚ Sad news: If you wanted a Facebook smartwatch, you’re out of luck (Android Authority).
😲 A new Motorola smartwatch just showed up out of nowhere: The Moto Watch 70 hasn’t yet been officially announced (Android Authority).
🎮 The Game Awards 2022 nominees have been revealed: God of War Ragnarök, Elden Ring, and Horizon Forbidden West dominate, with feline adventure Stray also receiving nominations across several categories (Variety).
👀 It’s coming: OnePlus Pad is likely just around the corner, could launch in 2023 (Android Authority).
😢 More tech industry firings: Amazon mass layoffs will reportedly ax 10,000 people this week (The Verge).
Whether you’re currently playing God of War Ragnarök (one of the best PS5 games around) after its launch last week or are clearing other games in your backlog first, there’s no denying that the latest God of War game is innovative in its storytelling (as reported by Axios).
- In the 2018 game, Kratos and Atreus would often hold conversations during travel sequences which fleshed out the story and offered an alternative to the usual cinematic scenes.
- This system has been expanded in God of War Ragnarök — the game will detect your pace and anticipate potential down moments (often only 20 seconds long) when there’s no major plot moment of combat, offering an opportunity for chat between the characters.
- According to Matt Sophos, the game’s narrative director, “The characters may wind up talking about recent events in the game, reveal more of their pasts, or even ponder riddles they’re stumped on.”
- That may not sound particularly innovative, but this dialogue can vary from one player’s game to another, playing at different times and in different locations — so you could have a totally different experience from your friend, with some of the dialogue expiring as you make your way through the game’s 30+hour quest.
- That’s just one more thing to look forward to when I finally get around to playing God of War Ragnarök over the holidays.
Have a great day!
Paula Beaton, Copy Editor.