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These Epic lawsuits have been massive eye-openers. There’s almost a story out of every unredacted email as we watch CEOs, VPs, and founders do business, always in the best interest of their businesses.
Sean Hollister at The Verge is hot on the trail of court documents out of Epic v. Apple and Epic v. Google, and as he writes: the whole Epic v. Google lawsuit, which seemed a sideshow to the Apple App Store arguments, finally makes sense.
- Really, though, the ol’ playful, fun, colorful and friendly Google pulled every trick it could.
Now, remember, complaints are assembled to look bad for the defendent, which is why being a judge is tricky.
But, in brief, here’s what Google allegedly did to stop Epic (and Samsung, by the way) launching an anti-Play Store effort to prevent “contagion risk” (I’m just going to quote large portions from the article as to what Google was doing here):
- “That included straight-up paying top game developers, including Activision Blizzard to stick around, and sharing additional chunks of its revenue with phone makers if they agreed not to preinstall any other app stores.
- “Remember when Google allegedly forced OnePlus to break off a deal that would have seen the Fortnite Launcher preinstalled on phones? LG and Motorola reportedly struck a deal where they got 12% of the search revenue from their customers, and up to 6% of the money they spent in the Play Store, to be exclusive to Google. OnePlus sister brands Oppo and Vivo were also onboard, with owner BBK committing the vast majority of its phones to the exclusive program. Nokia phone maker HMD Global signed up too, as did Sony, Sharp, Xiaomi, and another unnamed brand.
- “If those tactics sound familiar, it might be because 36 state attorneys general alleged that Google used the exact same hush-hush deals against Samsung’s Galaxy Store, in the antitrust lawsuit they filed against Google in July.”
Google somehow knew about Epic’s sideloading plans for Fortnite Mobile, despite this command from Epic CEO, Tim Sweeney:
- Now, of course, sideloading isn’t even possible on iOS, which is why the Apple case has been bigger
- But Google seems like it really, really wishes it wasn’t possible on Android.
- Not because it wants to protect users. But because there are billions at stake.
- And, by the way, Epic is no golden child. It wants to make money too.
And, credit where it’s due, Hollister also dug up all the internal emails available (some 800 or so) to find more dirty laundry from the Apple case. There’s dirt on Microsoft, Sony, Google, Nintendo, Valve, Netflix, Hulu and more, encapsulated in a “107 things I learned” post.
- If you’ve been following along, you’ll know a swathe of this stuff, but things like Apple losing a game of chicken with Netflix have great revelations.
👉 Motorola Edge (2021) hands-on impressions: Redefining the budget flagship? (Android Authority).
🤔 The “OnePlus 9RT” has leaked, an update to the 9R, coming soon, though probably just to India and China (Android Authority).
⚡ Xiaomi Mi 11T Pro specs: 120W charging with 120Hz OLED tipped (Android Authority).
🍎 Old Steve Jobs email confirms Apple was working on an “iPhone nano” in 2010 (Android Authority). (Another Epic v. Apple revelation!)
🌊 Yes, LG is testing 6G speeds at terahertz wavelengths via Fraunhofer in Berlin. No, this isn’t something that’ll happen any time soon — 2028, maybe? (Android Authority).
🆕 Intel has unveiled its 12th generation CPU architecture, to be available this fall: works like Arm’s big.Little configuration (Android Authority).
👉 Dell’s new monitor lineup includes a $350 portable second screen (Engadget).
📦 Amazon reportedly plans to open department stores, starting in California and Ohio (The Verge).
📉 Amazon killed the name Alexa: Parents are fleeing from a name that can be, at best, a nuisance and, at worst, associated with subservience (The Atlantic).
🔫 Quake’s 4K remaster is available now on PlayStation, Xbox, Switch, and PC for $10 (Engadget).
🤷♂️ Because of the oddities of incredibly rich people wanting to become richer: OnlyFans is banning “Sexually-Explicit Content.” Yes, really, though nudity is ok, somehow? It may also be Mastercard payment-related too, as banks pretend not to notice money flows until they do (Gizmodo). TechCrunch points out: This is crypto’s opportunity of a lifetime.
🌚 The next big challenge for lunar astronauts? Moon dust(Wired).
🤔 Different cultures ask questions: “Do Americans really have people whose job is to just stand at the entrance of a store and greet people?” (r/nostupidquestions).
At Tesla’s AI Day presentation, something that went for more than 2.5 hours, Elon Musk unexpectedly unveiled the Tesla Bot, a humanoid robot utilizing Tesla’s vehicle AI to eliminate “dangerous, repetitive, boring tasks”.
- It’ll use parts of Tesla’s AI competencies, and Musk said the company plans to have a prototype of the Tesla Bot ready by next year. (..Mmhmmm)
- It’s a 5-foot-8-inch robot with a screen for a face, weighing about 125 pounds and capable of moving about 5mph.
- Musk joked: “It’s intended to be friendly,” and that it’s “small enough to be overpowered,” which was also a joke … I think?
- A robot designed out of full-self driving AI sounds, well … you first?
- More flowing out of AI Day here (Electrek).
All the best overpowering our self-driving robot friends,
Tristan Rayner, Senior Editor.