Here’s the latest news from the technology industry, which is coming under increasing global scrutiny.
BIS Wary Of Big Tech’s Market Power, Data Concentration In Finance
A new BIS paper reported that Big Tech’s power could be a cause for concern because of the way that the companies can overcome limits on their scales through the usage of greater activity making more data. That helps to reinforce the advantages from network effects.
Big Tech companies can establish a bigger presence in financial services, BIS said, which can lead to new concerns on how the dominant firms could emerge and create more of a concentration of market power along with more of a systemic footprint.
Chinese Antitrust Watchdog May Hit Meituan With $1B Penalty
Amid stepped-up regulatory scrutiny of Big Tech firms in China, the country’s antitrust watchdog is reportedly getting ready to hit food delivery platform Meituan with an almost $1 billion financial penalty, The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday (Aug. 6).
As part of the punishment, Meituan would have to change its business processes and put a stop to the “choose one out of two” practice, which is also known as “er xuan yi.” This practice, which entails exclusivity deals, has forced a number of small companies to choose sides in the nation’s hot retail sector.
Apple To Raise Apple Cash Instant Transfer Fees
Apple Cash customers can now use Instant Transfer with Mastercard debit cards in addition to Visa debit cards to move Apple Cash to their bank accounts.
Starting Aug. 26, the cost to make an Apple Cash Instant Transfer will be 1.5 percent of the transfer amount, with a minimum of 25 cents and a maximum of $15. Transfers can also be done through ACH to users’ bank accounts. That money will be transferred in one to three business days for no fee.
Chinese Regulators Slap Tencent’s WeChat With Lawsuit
Shenzhen-headquartered Tencent is being slapped with a lawsuit over its WeChat subsidiary and regulations concerning minors, Reuters reported on Friday (Aug. 6).
The WeChat app’s “youth mode” apparently is not in line with Chinese laws designed to protect minors. WeChat’s alternate mode for young people is supposed to limit game exposure, as well as other functions such as payments and the location-based friend finder.
COVID-19 Surge Delays Amazon Return To Office Until 2022
Amazon corporate employees will wait a few more months to return to their offices, after the company announced it will push it back until at least Jan. 3, 2022, after previously targeting September.
Google recently postponed its employees’ return to the office until October and said all employees must be vaccinated. Wells Fargo is pushing off its staggered office return until Oct. 4, while Microsoft is doing the same with its planned full reopening, which will require full vaccination of employees.