• T-Mobile CEO takes the stand in T-Mobile/Sprint merger trial
    Reuters

    T-Mobile CEO takes the stand in T-Mobile/Sprint merger trial

    T-Mobile and Sprint have already received approval for the deal from the U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), after the companies agreed to sell Sprint’s prepaid phone business and some spectrum to satellite TV provider Dish, which has committed to building a nationwide wireless network and becoming a competitor in the industry. The states have argued that Dish has a history of stockpiling FCC licenses for wireless spectrum, or airwaves that carry data, and has not yet demonstrated that it can build a wireless network.

  • Amazon Roundup: Government, re:Invent Conference, India, Other
    Zacks

    Amazon Roundup: Government, re:Invent Conference, India, Other

    Amazon had a big week with government issues, a host of new deals and announcements at its annual conference and developments in India.

  • Bloomberg

    A Startup Fired Its CEO for Expensing $76,120 at Strip Clubs

    (Bloomberg) -- Scott Lang, the new chief executive officer of Turvo Inc., wants to emphasize an important corporate policy at his startup: Employees may not entertain clients at strip clubs and certainly not bill those trips to the business. The rule is salient because his predecessor was fired for doing just that.The board accused the co-founder, Eric Gilmore, of expensing $76,120 at strip clubs over a three-year span and removed him as CEO in May, according to legal filings. Gilmore, 39, didn’t deny the accusations, but he sued the company, claiming the board didn’t follow the proper protocol for his termination. Turvo said it did, and they settled in September. Gilmore declined to comment through a spokesman.Lang, a former executive in the energy industry, joined Turvo just before Thanksgiving. The Silicon Valley startup makes software to help companies track the movement of freight and is backed by about $85 million in venture capital. In his first interview since taking the job, Lang said he’s focused on helping the company move past the scandal. When asked about trying to win over prospective clients at stripper joints, he said: “Never have. Never will.”The situation at Turvo, which hasn’t been previously reported, illustrates the steps some boards are taking to quietly address allegations of misconduct before they become public. The MeToo movement has claimed the jobs of many technology executives, such as Kris Duggan of Betterworks Systems Inc. and Andy Rubin of Essential Products Inc., and venture capitalists Justin Caldbeck and Shervin Pishevar. Often, the consequences only arrive after allegations are published in the news.Gilmore, a veteran of Microsoft Corp. and Coupons.com, started Turvo in 2014. Mubadala Investment Co., the Abu Dhabi-based sovereign wealth fund, led a $60 million investment in the Sunnyvale, California-based company last year. Soon after, Gilmore hired a new chief financial officer, who discovered a pattern of unusual charges from the CEO in a review of corporate spending.The stripper-related expenses spanned most of the company’s life, and Gilmore made no attempt to conceal them. Strip clubs represented more than half of the $125,000 in entertainment charges initially flagged by the CFO.At a hastily called meeting in May after the board learned of the expenses, directors from Mubadala and venture capital firms Felicis Ventures and Activant Capital told Gilmore he was out. They demanded he sign a separation agreement. Gilmore declined and argued the process violated company bylaws because the confrontation wasn’t at first presented as a formal board meeting and didn’t adhere to other rules. The board disagreed. Gilmore’s lawsuit over the dispute lasted three months. Terms of the settlement weren’t disclosed.Gilmore remains on the board and is the company’s largest shareholder, according to a person familiar with the matter who wasn’t authorized to discuss it publicly and asked not to be identified. Gilmore’s two co-founders still hold executive roles at Turvo, and there has been no suggestion they misused their expense accounts.The Turvo board selected Lang as the new CEO in the hope he could reinvigorate a company still grappling with a demoralizing situation. Lang, the former CEO of Silver Spring Networks, praised the 200-person team at Turvo for winning several big contracts recently and posting “massive” growth this year. He declined to provide details.To contact the author of this story: Sarah McBride in San Francisco at smcbride24@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Mark Milian at mmilian@bloomberg.net, Molly SchuetzFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Trade deal removes major hurdle for rally in Apple and tech
    Reuters

    Trade deal removes major hurdle for rally in Apple and tech

    U.S. President Donald Trump's limited trade deal with China removes a major hurdle for Apple and other technology stocks that have already surged this year to record highs. China has agreed to boost imports of U.S. energy, pharmaceutical and agricultural products, although Chinese officials offered no details on the amount of U.S. agricultural goods Beijing had agreed to buy, a sticking point of the lengthy negotiations. If it is signed, Trump's long-awaited deal will be a relief to Apple, among the U.S. companies with the most to lose in the trade war between the world's two largest economies, along with chipmakers who make the components in its devices, which are mostly made in China.

  • Google Culture War Escalates as Era of Transparency Wanes
    Bloomberg

    Google Culture War Escalates as Era of Transparency Wanes

    (Bloomberg) -- Each morning, workers at Google get an internal newsletter called the “Daily Insider.” Kent Walker, Google’s top lawyer, set off a firestorm when he argued in the Nov. 14 edition that the 21-year old company had outgrown its policy of allowing workers to access nearly any internal document. “When we were smaller, we all worked as one team, on one product, and everyone understood how business decisions were made,” Walker wrote. “It's harder to give a company of over 100,000 people the full context on everything.”Many large companies have policies restricting access to sensitive information to a “need-to-know” basis. But in some segments of Google’s workforce, the reaction to Walker’s argument was immediate and harsh. On an internal messaging forum, one employee described the data policy as “a total collapse of Google culture.” An engineering manager posted a lengthy attack on Walker’s note, which he called "arrogant and infantilizing." The need-to-know policy "denies us a form of trust and respect that is again an important part of the intrinsic motivation to work here,” the manager wrote.The complaining also spilled into direct action. A group of Google programmers created a tool that allowed employees to choose to alert Walker with an automated email every time they opened any document at all, according to two people with knowledge of the matter. The deluge of notifications was meant as a protest to what they saw as Walker’s insistence on controlling the minutiae of their professional lives. “When it comes to data security policies, we’ve never intended to prevent employees from sharing technical learnings and information and we are not limiting anyone’s ability to raise concerns or debate the company’s activities,” said a Google spokeswoman in an email. “We have a responsibility to safeguard our user, business and customer information and these activities need to be done in line with our policies on data security.” The actions are just the latest chapter in an internal conflict that has been going on for almost two years. About 20,000 employees walked out last fall over the company’s generous treatment of executives accused of sexual harassment, and a handful quit over Google’s work on products for the U.S. military and a censored search engine for the Chinese market. Earlier this year, Google hired IRI Consultants, a firm that advises employers on how to combat labor organizing, and it recently fired four employees for violating its policies on accessing sensitive data.The extent of Google’s employee rebellion is hard to measure—the company has tried to portray it as the work of a handful of malcontents from the company’s junior ranks. Nor are the company’s message boards unilaterally supportive of revolt. “We want to focus on our jobs when we come into the workplace rather than deal with a new cycle of outrage every few days or vote on petitions for or against Google’s latest project,” wrote one employee on an internal message board viewed by Bloomberg News.  Still, the company seems stuck in a cycle of escalation. Walker’s internal critics say his Nov. 14 email is part of a broader erosion of one of Google’s most distinctive traits—its extreme internal transparency. The fight also illustrates the lack of trust between Google’s leadership and some of its employees, according to interviews with over a dozen current and former employees, as well as internal messages shared with Bloomberg News on the condition it not publish the names of employees who participated.The conflict comes as Google is changing in other ways, too. On Dec. 3, Sundar Pichai, who took over as Google’s chief executive office in 2015, became the head of Alphabet, its parent company. His elevation marks the end of the active involvement of Sergey Brin and Larry Page, who established Google’s distinctive culture when they founded the company as Stanford graduate students. Pichai has at times supported internal activism. He spoke at an employee protest against the Trump administration’s immigration policies and apologized to employees for Google’s track record on sexual harassment. His executives met repeatedly with critics of the company’s military work. Some Google managers began signaling that they're losing patience with internal activism even before the firings, according to one person who worked with them. Executives have not met with dissenting staff leadership in many weeks, according to one of the employees.While Walker wrote in the “Daily Insider” that organizations have to change as they grow, he simultaneously argued that the policies he described had always existed. “It was that way since the early days of Google, and it’s that way now,” he wrote. This particularly offended several long-time Googlers, who said on internal message boards that Walker’s comments didn’t square with their own memories. For some of them, the incident illustrated a broader breakdown in their trust of leadership. “I want to believe that executive management is saying everything—disclosing the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth,” said Bruce Hahne, a Google technical project manager. “I don’t think we are currently under those conditions.”Hahne, 51, doesn’t meet the Google management’s profile of internal protestors. He joined the company in 2005, a year after Pichai, partly because he was attracted to its mission to organize the world’s information. His disillusionment crept in gradually during the company’s myriad controversies. In an online essay, Hahne compared Google to a “rogue machine” that was “originally created for good but whose psyche has turned corrupt and destructive,” much like Hal 9000 from the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey. “You don’t treat a rogue machine like family,” wrote Hahne, “instead you come up with a plan, you disable or dismantle the dysfunctional parts of the machine, and you seek to reprogram the machine to serve its original purpose.” When it was founded two decades ago, Google established an unusual corporate practice. Nearly all of its internal documents were widely available for workers to review. A programmer working on Google search could for instance, dip into the software scaffolding of Google Maps to crib some elegant block of code to fix a bug or replicate a feature. Employees also had access to notes taken during brainstorming sessions, candid project evaluations, computer design documents, and strategic business plans. (The openness doesn’t apply to sensitive data such as user information.)The idea came from open-source software development, where the broader programming community collaborates to create code by making it freely available to anyone with ideas to alter and improve it. The philosophy came with technical advantages. “That interconnected way of working is an integral part of what got Google to where it is now,” said John Spong, a software engineer who worked at Google until this July.Google has flaunted its openness as a recruiting tool and public relations tactic as recently as 2015. "As for transparency, it’s part of everything we do," Laszlo Bock, then the head of Google human relations, said in an interview that year. He cited the immediate access staff have to software documentation, and said employees "have an obligation to make their voices heard."Google’s open systems also proved valuable for activists within the company, who have examined its systems for evidence of controversial product developments and then circulated their findings among colleagues. Such investigations have been integral to campaigns against the projects for the Pentagon and China. Some people involved in this research refer to it as "internal journalism."Management would describe it differently. In November, Google fired four engineers who it said had been carrying out “systematic searches for other employees’ materials and work. This includes searching for, accessing, and distributing business information outside the scope of their jobs.” The engineers said they were active in an internal campaign against Google’s work with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and denied violating the company’s data security policies.Rebecca Rivers, one of the fired employees, said she initially logged into Google’s intranet, a web portal open to all staff, and typed the terms: “CBP” and “GCP,” for Google Cloud Platform. “That’s how simple it was,” she said. “Anyone could have stumbled onto it easily,” she said.In an internal email describing the firings, Google accused one employee of tracking a colleague’s calendar without permission, gathering information about both personal and professional appointments in a way that made the targeted employee feel uncomfortable. Laurence Berland, one of the employees who was fired recently, acknowledged he had accessed internal calendars, but said they were not private. He used them to confirm his suspicions that the company was censoring and “coordinating to spy on” activist employees. Berland, who first joined Google in 2005, added that he felt the company was punishing him for breaking a rule that didn’t exist at the time of the alleged violations.  Google declined to identify the four employees it fired, but a company spokeswoman said the person who tracked calendars accessed unauthorized information.Other employees say they are now afraid to click on certain documents from other teams or departments because they are worried they could later be disciplined for doing so, a fear the company says is unfounded. Some workers have interpreted the policies as an attempt to stifle criticism of particular projects, which they allege amounts to a violation of the company’s code of conduct. These employees point to a clause in the code that actively encourages dissent: “Don’t be evil, and if you see something that you think isn’t right—speak up!” Workers are "trying to report internally on problematic situations, and in some cases are not being allowed to make that information useful and accessible,” said Hahne. There is now a “climate of fear” inside Google offices, he said.Google’s permissive workplace culture became the prime example of Silicon Valley’s brand of employment. But transparency is hardly universal. Apple Inc. and Amazon.com Inc. demand that workers operate in rigid silos to keep the details of sensitive projects from leaking to competitors. Engineers building a phone’s camera may have no idea what the people building its operating system are doing, and vice versa. Similar restrictions are common at government contractors and other companies working with clients who demand discretion.The specifics of Google’s business operations traditionally haven’t required this level of secrecy, but that is changing. Google’s cloud business in particular requires it to convince business clients it can handle sensitive data and work on discrete projects. This has brought it more in line with its secrecy-minded competitors. The protests themselves have also inspired new restrictions, as executives have looked to cut off the tools of the activists it argues are operating in bad faith.Google’s leaders have acknowledged the delicacy of adjusting a culture that has entrenched itself over two decades. “Employees today are much, much more active in the governance in the company,” Eric Schmidt, Google’s former CEO and chair, said at an event at Stanford University in October. Amy Edmonson, a professor of leadership and management at Harvard Business School, said that Google’s idealistic history increases the burden on its executives to bring along reluctant employees as it adopts more conventional corporate practices. “It’s just really important that if you’re going to do something that is perceived as change that you’re going to explain it,” she said.Bock, the company’s former HR director who is now CEO of Humu, a workplace software startup, suggested that Google hasn’t succeeded here. “Maybe Alphabet is just a different company than it used to be,” he wrote in an email to Bloomberg News. “But not everyone’s gotten the memo.” (Updates with additional comment from Berland in 19th paragraph. )\--With assistance from Josh Eidelson.To contact the authors of this story: Ryan Gallagher in London at rgallagher76@bloomberg.netMark Bergen in San Francisco at mbergen10@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Joshua Brustein at jbrustein@bloomberg.netFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Energy Efficiency Is a Hot Problem for Big Tech’s Data Centers
    Bloomberg

    Energy Efficiency Is a Hot Problem for Big Tech’s Data Centers

    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- Electrons aren’t much of a growth industry in the U.S., the second-largest electricity market in the world after China. Electricity sales rose last year, after nearly a decade of being flat or falling slightly, but are still only up 3% since 2007. There is one market, though, where demand for electrons is booming: data centers. That power-hungry growth market, though, is also where some of the world’s biggest, most capitalized and most innovative companies are bringing their might to bear. Before getting into that innovation, though, there’s a crucial equation to consider: the power usage effectiveness ratio, or PUE. PUE is a measure of a data center’s energy efficiency — the ratio of total energy used divided by energy consumed specifically for information technology activities. The theoretical ideal PUE is 1, where 100% of electricity consumption goes toward useful computation. All the other stuff — power transformers, uninterruptible power supplies, lighting and especially cooling — uses power but doesn’t compute, and as a result raises a data center’s PUE. A 2016 Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory study listed what was, at the time, PUE for facilities at various scales: a server sitting in a room, a server in a closet, a “hyperscale” extremely large data center. The smaller the server, the higher its ratio and the lower its efficiency. For the smallest server spaces, the PUE is above 2, meaning that more than half of its energy use is for things other than computing. For hyperscale, the PUE is 1.2 — meaning that most of the energy is going to computation. Here are that same data, expressed a bit differently, to show a server or data center’s power consumption by use. Here you can see that the smallest applications used more power for cooling than for computation. But at hyperscale data centers, more than 80% of power consumption went to IT (servers, networking and storage), and only 13% went to cooling. But now, with so much computation happening in the cloud (and, in reality, in hyperscale data centers), it’s worth finding out what today’s PUEs are and just how close they can get to that theoretical ideal of 1.0. A recent Uptime Institute survey of 1,600 data center owners and operators found that 2019’s average PUE is 1.67, and that “improvements in data center facility energy efficiency have flattened out and even deteriorated slightly in the past two years.” That PUE means that 60% of data center electricity consumption is going to IT, and the rest to cooling, lighting and so on. However, some operators are doing much better than that. Google says that its data centers have a PUE of 1.1, with some centers going as low as 1.06. There’s some seasonality in play, particularly because most of Google’s data centers are in the Northern Hemisphere; its Singapore data center has the highest PUE and is the least efficient of its sites. That’s not surprising given Singapore is hot and humid year-round. One key way to lower the cooling demand for a data center is to cool only to the temperature at which the machines are comfortable, not to where humans are most comfortable. For Google, that’s a temperature of 80 degrees Fahrenheit. There’s another approach, and one that draws on computation itself: machine learning. Google unleashed its DeepMind machine learning platform on the problem of data center energy efficiency three years ago; last year, it effectively turned over control to its own artificial intelligence: In 2016, we jointly developed an AI-powered recommendation system to improve the energy efficiency of Google’s already highly-optimised data centres. Our thinking was simple: even minor improvements would provide significant energy savings and reduce CO2 emissions to help combat climate change.Now we’re taking this system to the next level: instead of human-implemented recommendations, our AI system is directly controlling data centre cooling, while remaining under the expert supervision of our data centre operators. This first-of-its-kind cloud-based control system is now safely delivering energy savings in multiple Google data centres.It seems likely that more of that sort of approach will be adopted by Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, IBM and other major cloud computing firms. Even with efficiency gains, data center electricity demand is voracious and growing; that growth has a number of implications for the power grid and for power utilities. The first is that many of these major consumers of electricity are also contracting for wind and solar power to meet their demand. The second is that, with many data centers clustering in locations such as Northern Virginia, data center loads are becoming a meaningful share of utility peak demand in a given service territory. Recent BloombergNEF research finds that data centers could make up 15% of Dominion Energy Inc.’s summer peak demand by 2024. Given that data center operators have every incentive to economize on electricity, utilities need to compete to provide service. Preferential — and confidential — contracts for power supply are one way to do that, with the result being that other rate payers bear the cost, as Bloomberg News reported last year. Gains in efficiency don’t mean that data center demand for electricity is going down. Their scale and growth is a testament to their power usage effectiveness. Their preferential contracts for electricity, on the other hand, feel like a testament to their effective usage of a different kind of power: buying power. Weekend readingChevron Corp.’s $10 billion to $11 billion impairment charge, related mostly to its Appalachian natural gas assets, “ushers in oil’s era of the sober-major.” Chevron has also called time on the Kitimat liquefied natural gas export plant in British Columbia, writing off years of development while also planning to sell its 50% stake. Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd. has launched the world’s first liquefied hydrogen carrier. Tesla Inc. has lost its third general counsel in the course of a year. Vancouver-based Harbour Air Ltd.’s electric seaplane has taken flight. I looked at the environmental implications of electrifying aviation last month. Stanford University has released its 2019 Artificial Intelligence Index Report.  Venture capital fund Piva, funded by $250 million from Malaysia’s Petronas, has launched with a focus on energy and industry. Bloomberg Media will acquire CityLab, a news site covering “urban innovation and the future of cities.” Nomura Holdings Inc. will acquire sustainable technology and infrastructure boutique investment bank Greentech Capital Advisors. Hiro Mizuno, the chief investment officer of Japan’s $1.6 trillion Government Pension Investment Fund, has “embraced ESG principles so enthusiastically” that the fund will not award new mandates to managers without environmental, social and governance credentials. Considering the legacy of Xie Zhenhua, a key architect of the Paris Agreement and China’s climate negotiator for more than a decade. Greta Thunberg is Time Magazine’s Person of the Year. Get Sparklines delivered to your inbox. Sign up here.To contact the author of this story: Nathaniel Bullard at nbullard@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Brooke Sample at bsample1@bloomberg.netThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Nathaniel Bullard is a BloombergNEF energy analyst, covering technology and business model innovation and system-wide resource transitions.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • 3 Growth-Focused Cloud Stocks for Tech Investors to Buy for 2020
    Zacks

    3 Growth-Focused Cloud Stocks for Tech Investors to Buy for 2020

    We found three cloud-focused software stocks using our Zacks Stock Screener that investors might want to consider buying for 2020...

  • SoftBank’s Largest Deals in Latin America Are Still to Come
    Bloomberg

    SoftBank’s Largest Deals in Latin America Are Still to Come

    (Bloomberg) -- SoftBank Group Corp. has no plans to slow down its multibillion-dollar foray into Latin America.After investing between 6 billion reais ($1.5 billion) and 10 billion reais in 19 firms in the region in 2019, the Tokyo-based firm is planning on potentially making fewer but larger deals in the new year, SoftBank Group International managing partner Andre Maciel told reporters in Sao Paulo.“We haven’t made the largest transactions we have in mind yet,” Maciel said. He declined to give the exact amount invested so far since some of the transactions have yet to become public.Some of SoftBank’s investments include the Colombia-based delivery startup Rappi and Mexican payments fintech Clip. In Brazil, it has invested in logistics platform Loggi, fitness startup Gympass and digital bank Banco Inter SA, among others. The Japanese technology giant launched a fund dedicated to venture capital investments in Latin America earlier this year.The firm’s expansion in Latin America has been overseen by SoftBank Group International’s chief executive officer, Marcelo Claure, who was also recently appointed WeWork’s new executive chairman. Maciel, a 17-year veteran of JPMorgan Chase & Co., is one of Claure’s three lieutenants in the region, and the only one based in Sao Paulo.To contact the reporter on this story: Vinícius Andrade in São Paulo at vandrade3@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Brad Olesen at bolesen3@bloomberg.net, Daniel CancelFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • YouTube’s Music App Outpaces Spotify, Local Rivals in India
    Bloomberg

    YouTube’s Music App Outpaces Spotify, Local Rivals in India

    (Bloomberg) -- YouTube has signed up more than 800,000 subscribers for its paid services in India since debuting in March, according to people familiar with the matter, vaulting it past some competitors in one of the world’s fastest-growing media markets.The services have been growing faster than rival paid music offerings in India, including Spotify and local players Gaana and JioSaavn, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the subscriber data hasn’t been released. Apple Music also competes in the market, but it’s been tight-lipped about its subscriber figures.Gaana, owned by Times Internet, has more than 1 million paid subscribers, according to a representative. But it’s been around for almost a decade and has more than 125 million monthly users, who mostly use the free version of the service.YouTube has long struggled to to gets users to pay for its services, especially since the company’s main website is synonymous with free videos. But the Google division has started to gain traction, and the numbers out of India suggest it’s having particular success in the world’s second-most-populous country.YouTube sells two paid services in India: YouTube Music Premium and YouTube Premium. The music service offers a library of songs on-demand, much like Spotify, as well as the ability to download tracks, listen to music without ads and play tunes while using other apps. YouTube Premium offers the traditional YouTube video service without ads -- and the ability to play clips offline. But music is the driving force behind YouTube’s appeal, especially in India.Bhushan Kumar, the Bollywood Boss Behind YouTube’s Top ChannelThe country has emerged as a battleground for online music services, which are eager to sign up users in a country with more than 1.3 billion people. Unlike China, where online media services are tightly controlled by the government, India offers a similarly massive population without the same level of regulation.Western companies such as Apple Music, Spotify and YouTube compete with local services, and will soon contend with Resso, a platform from Chinese tech giant ByteDance.ByteDance is testing Resso in India and Indonesia before rolling out a paid version of the app next year. ByteDance’s short-form video app TikTok has more than 200 million users in India, enough to be a real challenger to YouTube and Instagram.Major PresenceBut YouTube already has a big presence in India, giving it an edge as it tries to get subscribers to pay fees. More than 265 million people use the free YouTube service in the country, making it YouTube’s largest market. India is also home to the channel with the most subscribers, T-Series, the country’s largest record label. Google has plowed resources into India in its bid to find new internet users and markets.The growth is also notable because India isn’t typically hospitable to paid services. The country is one of the poorer major economies, making its average citizen very sensitive to price. The leading free music services, Gaana and JioSaavn, have tens of millions of users, but few paying subscribers.Representatives for Gaana and JioSaavn didn’t immediately respond to emails seeking comment.Netflix Inc., the world’s most popular paid online video service, has had to cut its price to compete in the country. It introduced a cheaper, mobile-only plan in India earlier this year and said this week it’s testing other pricing models.Netflix Is Spending $420 Million on Indian Content, CEO SaysYouTube has convinced people to pay by selling its service at a low price -- less than $2 a month -- and offering special features to subscribers. People who want to listen to music while not actively using the app -- a popular feature known as background listening -- must pay for it. The other apps offer background listening for free.Spotify has said that its Indian service has outperformed its expectations so far, though most of its growth has been from users of its free service.(Updates with Gaana subscriber figures in third paragraph.)\--With assistance from Ragini Saxena.To contact the reporter on this story: Lucas Shaw in Los Angeles at lshaw31@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Nick Turner at nturner7@bloomberg.net, Dave McCombsFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Why Is Cisco (CSCO) Up 1.7% Since Last Earnings Report?
    Zacks

    Why Is Cisco (CSCO) Up 1.7% Since Last Earnings Report?

    Cisco (CSCO) reported earnings 30 days ago. What's next for the stock? We take a look at earnings estimates for some clues.

  • A Close Look At Verizon Communications Inc.’s (NYSE:VZ) 13% ROCE
    Simply Wall St.

    A Close Look At Verizon Communications Inc.’s (NYSE:VZ) 13% ROCE

    Today we'll evaluate Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) to determine whether it could have potential as an...

  • The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Netflix, Disney, Apple and Amazon
    Zacks

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Netflix, Disney, Apple and Amazon

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Netflix, Disney, Apple and Amazon

  • The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Alibaba, Disney, Morgan Stanley, Enbridge and Honda
    Zacks

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Alibaba, Disney, Morgan Stanley, Enbridge and Honda

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Alibaba, Disney, Morgan Stanley, Enbridge and Honda

  • Zacks Value Trader Highlights: VTV, RPV, AMWD, DHI and JPM
    Zacks

    Zacks Value Trader Highlights: VTV, RPV, AMWD, DHI and JPM

    Zacks Value Trader Highlights: VTV, RPV, AMWD, DHI and JPM

  • Palladium Barrels Toward $2,000 as Red-Hot Rally Continues
    Bloomberg

    Palladium Barrels Toward $2,000 as Red-Hot Rally Continues

    (Bloomberg) -- Palladium set its sights on a record $2,000 an ounce, with the metal’s blistering rally showing no sign yet of cooling off.Prices climbed for an unprecedented 16th day after signs of a breakthrough in the U.S.-China trade talks, fueling hopes for a rebound in the auto industry, palladium’s biggest consumer. The metal that reached another record surged this week as mining disruptions in major producer South Africa threatened to tighten a market already hobbled by a persistent deficit.“We’re already in uncharted territory,” said Daniel Briesemann, a Commerzbank AG analyst. “The $2,000 mark seems to be a very attractive target to overcome. We also think some speculative financial investors may be pushing the price higher.”Spot palladium climbed as much as 2.1% to $1,982.01 an ounce, before trading at $1,969 at 10:25 a.m. in New York, according to Bloomberg generic pricing.The metal has gained more than 50% this year even as global car sales remain weak. Citigroup Inc. forecast prices could hit $2,500 next year.Tight supplies, which have trailed demand since at least 2012, mean that autocatalyst makers are scrambling to get hold of the metal to meet stricter pollution rules.“The physiological $2,000 level now acts as such a magnet to the market,” said Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Saxo Bank A/S. “The strong momentum driven by tight fundamentals was given a further jolt on news that a phase-one trade deal has been reached.”South Africa, the world’s No. 2 palladium producer, expanded rolling blackouts to a record level earlier this week, disrupting miners’ operations. The situation has eased and most operations have returned to normal, although the country continues to experience power cuts.Still, given the relatively small size of the market, a pullback in palladium prices could be sharp, said ABN Amro Bank NV strategist Georgette Boele.“What goes exponentially up can eventually also drop like that,” she said. “It will not defy gravity forever.”Beijing and Washington have agreed on the text of a phase one trade deal, which will see the removal of tariffs on Chinese goods in stages, Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen said. That averts the Dec. 15 introduction of a new wave of U.S. tariffs.Gold and silver swung between gains and losses, while platinum declined. The metal used in autocatalysts mainly for diesel-fueled vehicles will probably remain in surplus, Morgan Stanley said this week.The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index reached the lowest since July.\--With assistance from Justina Vasquez.To contact the reporters on this story: Ranjeetha Pakiam in Singapore at rpakiam@bloomberg.net;Elena Mazneva in London at emazneva@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Phoebe Sedgman at psedgman2@bloomberg.net, ;Lynn Thomasson at lthomasson@bloomberg.net, Liezel HillFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: JPMorgan, Bank of America, PNC Financial and Zions
    Zacks

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: JPMorgan, Bank of America, PNC Financial and Zions

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: JPMorgan, Bank of America, PNC Financial and Zions

  • The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: CBRE, Prologis, Duke Realty, First Industrial and EastGroup
    Zacks

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: CBRE, Prologis, Duke Realty, First Industrial and EastGroup

    The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: CBRE, Prologis, Duke Realty, First Industrial and EastGroup

  • AMD Boosts Gaming Experience, Launches Radeon RX 5500 XT
    Zacks

    AMD Boosts Gaming Experience, Launches Radeon RX 5500 XT

    Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) unveils Radeon RX 5500 XT graphics card, which is expected to enhance user gaming experience.

  • Stock Market News for Dec 13, 2019
    Zacks

    Stock Market News for Dec 13, 2019

    Benchmarks closed in the green on Thursday after hitting new record highs as reports on a U.S.-China trade deal lifted investors??? sentiment.

  • Micron Technology (MU) to Post Q1 Earnings: What in Store?
    Zacks

    Micron Technology (MU) to Post Q1 Earnings: What in Store?

    Micron's (MU) first-quarter fiscal 2020 earnings are likely to have been hurt by low DRAM revenues amid the U.S.-China trade tussle. However, strong DRAM bit demand is likely to have been a breather.

  • Broadcom (AVGO) Q4 Earnings & Revenues Surpass Estimates
    Zacks

    Broadcom (AVGO) Q4 Earnings & Revenues Surpass Estimates

    Broadcom's (AVGO) fiscal fourth-quarter results reflect synergies from CA buyout amid slowdown in enterprise spending.

  • Canada’s Bank Stocks Are Oversold: Time to Buy?
    The Motley Fool

    Canada’s Bank Stocks Are Oversold: Time to Buy?

    Toronto-Dominion Bank (TSX:TD)(NYSE:TD) and Royal Bank of Canada (TSX:RY)(NYSE:RY) stock have both entered oversold territory for only the second time this year.