Wednesday’s top tech news: layoffs come for Microsoft

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My condolences to anyone at Microsoft affected by its large round of layoffs. Announced officially on Wednesday morning, the cuts mean about 10,000 people are losing their jobs. It makes Microsoft the latest tech giant to have cut thousands of jobs in recent months, following layoffs at the likes of Meta and Amazon.

Wednesday’s tech news started, like Tuesday’s, with a new Apple hardware announcement. After discontinuing its HomePod speaker a few years ago, the company s launching a new version, priced at $299, with support for Spatial Audio and the Matter smart home spec.

Apple has also reportedly put its plans to release a pair of lightweight augmented reality glasses on hold due to “technical challenges.” Its mixed reality headset (which would offer both AR and VR) is still believed to be on track for this year, but these sleeker AR-only glasses are now unlikely to meet their 2025 target launch date.

For now, here’s a silly tweet to start your day (don’t worry, it’s not actually “sensitive content” as the disclaimer suggests):

  • Jan 18, 2023, 10:54 PM UTCAndrew J. Hawkins

    The plaintiffs’ lawyers argued that Musk’s ‘funding secured’ tweets were reckless and cost ‘regular people’ millions of dollars, while Musk’s attorneys said they ‘didn’t matter.’


  • Finally, a good use of ‘yelling fire in a crowded theater.’

    It’s the latest project from Jeff Kosseff, author of The Verge’s favorite Section 230 book, The Twenty-Six Words That Created the Internet. I truly cannot wait.


  • We are gathered here today in memory of our dearly departed cloud gaming service, Stadia

    You’ve transferred your saves, converted your controller to Bluetooth, and rescued your toons, so there’s nothing left to do but remember all the times Google told us we wouldn’t be here.

    Google Stadia is officially closing its cloud doors today, almost four years after an inauspicious debut displaying the console alongside uhhh… notable video game artifacts, ET for the Atari 2600, the Power Glove, and the Dreamcast.

    Google has handled its passing with as much grace as can be expected, so let’s (Google) Wave goodbye to a cloud gaming OG.


  • External Link
    Who’s the biggest name at VidCon?

    Last year, TikTok was the event’s main sponsor, highlighting a major shift in the creator video space. This year… YouTube is back. (And surely, it’ll want to remind creators to use YouTube Shorts.)

    Of course, buying a sponsorship ≠ maintaining cultural dominance. Shorts has its work cut out. But showing up to VidCon still means something — it tells creators that YouTube cares.


  • External Link
    They’re surveilling your money without a warrant in Arizona.

    The Transaction Record Analysis Center has been used by more than 600 law-enforcement entities to surveil money sent across US borders without a warrant. Among the data? Your name, how much you sent, and who you sent it to.

    “One slideshow prepared by a TRAC investigator showed how the program’s data could be used to scan for categories such as ‘Middle Eastern/Arabic names’ in bulk transaction records,” the WSJ reports.


  • Jan 18, 2023, 5:32 PM UTCCameron Faulkner

    Alongside the announcement of Apple’s new HomePod, the company said it would enable a sensor hidden in the HomePod Mini since launch in an upcoming software update.