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RSS agregátor | FLOPS

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Samsung’s ‘Linux on DeX’ project shuts down after just 11 months

OS News - 10 hodin 4 min zpět
The desktop environment that turns your Samsung phone or tablet into a PC when connected to an external display, nicknamed ‘DeX,’ has been around for a while now. Nearly a year ago, Samsung introduced the Linux on DeX beta, which could run a full Linux OS on top of DeX. Sadly, the project seems to have been discontinued. Samsung is sending out an email to testers explaining that the beta program has ended, and that Linux on DeX will not be supported on devices running Android 10. That’s definitely a bit of a shame. While I haven’t yet tried Dex on my brand new Note 10+, the idea of messing around with a full Linux distribution running on my phone was a neat and interesting concept.

AI 101: How learning computers are becoming smarter

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 23:00

Many companies use the term artificial intelligence, or AI, as a way to generate excitement for their products and to present themselves as on the cutting edge of tech development.

But what exactly is artificial intelligence? What does it involve? And how will it help the development of future generations?

Find out the answers to these questions and more in AI 101, a brand new FREE report from  Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service, that describes how AI works and looks at its present and potential future applications.

To get your copy of the FREE slide deck, simply click here.

Join the conversation about this story »

Netflix's 8 most popular original movies and TV shows that it has shared viewership data for

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 21:59

  • Netflix said in its third quarter earnings report on Wednesday that 64 million households watched "Stranger Things" season three.
  • Netflix has pulled the curtain back on viewership recently and championed some of its most popular movies and TV shows.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Netflix, famous for closely guarding its viewership data, has lifted the curtain on some of its most popular content recently.

During its third quarter earnings report on Wednesday, the streaming giant said that "Stranger Things" season three was the show's biggest season yet and was watched by 64 million member households in its first four weeks of release. It also said that its romcom "Tall Girl" was watched by 41 million households and that its limited series "When They See Us" by 25 million in the first month. 

Netflix has championed other hit original movies and TV shows in recent months after years of keeping its viewership mostly shrouded in secrecy.

READ MORE: Netflix climbs 10% on international and earnings growth, despite missing subscriber targets for the second straight quarter

But what it defines as viewership is non-traditional. It counts a view if an account watches 70% of a movie's runtime or 70% of a single episode of a TV show. We don't know how many accounts actually finish an entire movie or TV season.

It said in December that "Bird Box" was its biggest movie yet and was watched by 45 million accounts worldwide in just its first week. It went on to be watched by 80 million households in its first month. The action movie "Triple Frontier" was watched by 52 million accounts in the first month.

Many of Netflix's most popular movies are torn apart by critics, from Adam Sandler's "Murder Mystery" (73 million households in the first month) to "The Highwaymen" (40 million), which received 45% and 57% Rotten Tomatoes critic scores, respectively.

We collected the top eight TV shows and movies that Netflix has said are some of its biggest hits below:

8. "Tall Girl" — 41 million

Netflix description: "After years of slouching through life, 6-foot-1 teen Jodi resolves to conquer her insecurities and gets caught up in a high school love triangle."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score: 44%

What critics said: "From a one-note mean girl stereotype to a complete disinterest in how social media shapes the lives of teens, Sam Wolfson's lackluster script fails to bring anything new or timely to the teen rom-com table." — AV Club

READ MORE: Netflix championed its ability to 'create a brand almost out of thin air' ahead of the launch of Disney Plus, citing the success of 'Tall Girl'

7. "Money Heist (La Casa de Papel)" season 3 — 44 million

Netflix description: "With millions of euros and their lives on the line, nine robbers attempt to pull off the greatest heist of all time."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score: 100%

What critics said: "If you enjoyed seasons 1 and 2 and maybe even learned some Spanish in the process, this cynical Spaniard has good news for you: You'll enjoy part 3. A lot." — CNet (Season 3)

6. "The Umbrella Academy" season 1 — 45 million

Netflix description: "Reunited by their father's death, estranged siblings with extraordinary powers uncover shocking family secrets — and a looming threat to humanity."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score: 77%

What critics said: "It has flaws and excesses, but the series nonetheless lands in the sweet spot between comedy and drama, and between a plot-and-action-driven narrative and character exploration." — Boston Globe (Season 1)

READ MORE: Netflix says 'The Umbrella Academy' was watched by 45 million households in the first month, and it's been renewed for season 2

5. "The Perfect Date" — 48 million

Netflix description: "To earn money for college, a high schooler launches an app offering his services as a fake date. But when real feelings emerge, things get complicated."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score: 69%

What critics said: "'The Perfect Date' feels engineered by Netflix algorithms." — Los Angeles Times

4. "Triple Frontier" — 52 million

Netflix description: "They served their country. Now they're scrambling to get by. A daring heist could net them millions — if they make it out alive."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score: 72%

What critics said: "If you dig shoot-'em-up sequences, 'Triple Frontier' has plenty and they're often the default. Yet what it does well — though not enough — is introduce the complicated motivations of characters and what's led them to this somewhat impossible mission." — USA Today

READ MORE: Netflix won't stop bragging about the millions of people who watch its mediocre original movies

3. "Stranger Things" season 3 — 64 million

Netflix description: "When a young boy vanishes, a small town uncovers a mystery involving secret experiments, terrifying supernatural forces and one strange little girl."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score: 93%

What critics said: "It's a real and joyful return to form for the show that has been taken fiercely to the hearts of people who weren't there the first time round and, perhaps even more fiercely, by those who were." — Guardian (Season 3)

2. "Murder Mystery" — 73 million

Netflix description: "An overdue honeymoon. A shocking crime. A roomful of suspects. If Nick and Audrey can stay alive, this could be their best vacation ever."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score: 45%

What critics said: "It would be uncomfortably cynical to assume that Sandler thinks these novocaine-like comedies are what common people want to watch, but the guy doesn't leave us much choice." — Indiewire

READ MORE: Critics trashed Adam Sandler's 'Murder Mystery,' but Netflix said 73 million households watched it in the first month

1. "Bird Box" — 80 million

Netflix description: "Five years after an ominous unseen presence drives most of society to suicide, a survivor and her two children make a desperate bid to reach safety."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score: 63%

What critics said: "Is it good? Not really, but it doesn't need to be." — Salon

Tesla has always struggled to build cars. Now that critical fundamental is really hurting its business. (TSLA)

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 17:13

  • Tesla has always struggled to meet auto-industry standards for its manufacturing processes; CEO Elon Musk has called this "production hell."
  • Because the company spends so much time on something the rest of the auto industry has nearly perfected, it has less time to deal with the more complicated aspects of its business.
  • As Tesla has grown, this failing has become a larger drag on its business.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. 

For years, it was the biggest puzzle in the auto industry. Tesla's stock price, consumer mindshare, and media profile surged along with vehicle sales — and yet even as the company went from selling a few thousand cars to nearly 250,000 in 2018, it continues to bungle the fundamentals of manufacturing. They came up with a term for this: "production hell."

To industry veterans, this was baffling. Automakers had spent decades perfecting a "lean" manufacturing model and by the time Tesla started to seriously ramp up production, the electric-car maker should have been ideally positioned to implement this system with a minimal learning curve.

And yet, the opposite happened. Last year, Tesla's actual factory in California was failing so thoroughly at assembling the Model 3 sedan that the company threw up an additional line in its parking lot; housed under a huge tent, it looked like something from the early days of auto manufacturing.

I thought it was actually an innovative solution to a vexing problem, a nimble, "good enough" patch, and it did enable Tesla to keep the Model 3 on track. But that didn't make it any less baffling.

Read more: Here's how Tesla's cars stack up against the best of the competition from the world's top automakers

In fact, for much of the past five years, an inordinate amount of attention has been focused on Tesla's nuts and bolts. I can't overstate how completely weird this is. In the traditional auto industry, cars that are announced for production just ... show up a year later. Literally no one spends any time obsessing over Ford's or GM's or Toyota's ability to actually build cars. Rather, they worry that Big Auto might overdo it and crank out too many vehicles and be forced to cut prices to move excess inventory.

Auto executives can focus on the important stuff — not on making cars

The benefit that assumed competence gives to auto executives is considerable. They're free to run their businesses, absolved from worry about the bumpers and wheels being attached on schedule. This is important, because the business is both dynamic and demanding of significant advance planning and investment.

You can't sit around wondering whether your million-dollar robot is welding the body panels correctly or whether wiring harness number 7046/33B has been properly spec'd out, ordered in the right quantities, and has a valid installation protocol.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk ponders such trivialities, going so far as to have at times pitched a sleeping bag at his factory. As a result, he lacks time to think through the other important strains of his business, ranging from service to financing (he lacks time anyway, given that he's also running SpaceX). 

The problem has intensified as Tesla's production and sales have increased. The short form of the story is that even as Tesla figures out the basics of manufacturing, it adds complexity in other parts of its business and shows no signs of taking a breather to consolidate; to the contrary, it's preparing to flip the switch on a new factory in China.

Tesla also has a lot more of downstream issues than large, traditional car companies. The big guys design and engineer, manufacture, and market vehicles; they also maintain finance arms to leverage their automotive profits into less capital-intensive financial profits. Tesla does all that (minus, strangely, the financing), but because Tesla doesn't use franchised dealers, it equally handles sales and service, and it supports a far-flung fast-recharging infrastructure, its Supercharger network (Ford, by contrast, doesn't operate any gas stations).  

Downstream is Tesla's biggest challenge

This downstream setup has been severely tested as Tesla has grown, and it's often cracked. Tesla has been fixing it on the fly, largely I think because the company is in near-permanent fire-alarm mode with everything that isn't the all-consuming vehicle-assembly side of the enterprise. Tesla has gotten a pass from its loyal owners, but that equity is going to be spent at some future point.

Tesla wouldn't have had to deal with this if it had made two important decisions early on:

  • First, the company should have followed auto-industry best practices when it began to build cars in five-digit numbers. Production would be far smoother by now if it had. All this would have meant was utilizing some version of the Toyota Production System instead of designing an inordinately intricate vehicle in the Model X SUV and trying to automate too much of the Model 3's assembly.
  • Second, Tesla should have either partnered with or established a franchise dealer network or set up its own. The go-it-alone fits the Silicon Valley playbook, but it would have been a better idea to emulate Honda, whose first dealer franchise was established in the 1960s (not too far from Tesla's current HQ).

At this point, Tesla has been around for a decade and a half. If these flaws were going to be corrected, they would have been. So from here on out, expect more of the same. 

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NOW WATCH: Why Tesla's Model 3 received a 5-star crash test safety rating

Why giant squid, the once mythical kraken of the deep, are still mystifying scientists 150 years after they were discovered

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 17:11

The Kraken, the mythical beast of the sea, is real.

Giant squid live in the dark depths of the ocean, and very little is known about them to this day.

Most of what the world has learned about the gargantuan creature, which can grow up to 40 feet long and live in a world devoid of sunlight, is taken from their floating carcasses, or from the belly of sperm whales.

Until 2005, no scientist had ever photographed a living giant squid. One hadn't been filmed until 2013. But scientists believe there are millions of them out there.

In June, a NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research expedition captured the first footage of a giant squid in American waters.

The New Yorker's David Grann wrote that giant squid can be "larger than a whale and stronger than an elephant, with a beak that can sever steel cables."

Here's what is known about the mysterious beast, and why so much is still not known.

SEE ALSO: Watch a diver swim right next to a 12-foot giant squid in Japan

DON'T MISS: Booming populations of wild boars, some of which are radioactive, are menacing major cities like Hong Kong and Barcelona

Living 1,300 to 3,000 feet down in the ocean, giant squid inhabit the deepest, darkest places in the world. No one knows for sure how long they live for, how they find partners, how they migrate, where they lay their eggs, or even if they make any sounds. To put it bluntly, the giant squid remains a mystery.

Sources: Smithsonian Magazine, The Atlantic, BBC, National Museum of Natural History

Genetics show they've been around for about 730,000 years. They've been in human legends for hundreds of years. Giant squid are the inspiration for the "Kraken" in Norse mythology, and the beasts in Jules Verne's book "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea."

Sources: Smithsonian Magazine, The New York Times, BBC

One particularly good story was written in "The Natural History of Norway" in 1755, which described the giant squid as being as large as "a number of small islands," and when the giant squid began to sink, it caused whirlpools that sucked everyone down with it.

Source: BBC

Until about 150 years ago, most people didn't think they were real. They were sea monsters made up by sailors. But their existence started to become more plausible. One factor was finding sucker scars, like burn marks all over sperm whales, their main predator. Their beaks have also been found in the whales' stomachs. These were signs of the deep sea battles waged between whale and squid.

Source: The New Yorker

In 1857, Japetus Steenstrup, a Danish zoologist at the University of Copenhagen, introduced the giant squid into the scientific community. After studying a beak that washed up in Denmark, he published his research and confirmed to the world the giant squid was in fact real. He named them Architeuthis Dux, which is Latin for "ruling squid."

Sources: Smithsonian Magazine, The Conversation, BBC

In 1873, three fisherman in Conception Bay, Newfoundland, came upon a giant squid that tried to sink their boat. They fought it off, and the squid escaped after releasing dark clouds of ink. But the fishermen managed to secure 19 feet of tentacle — more proof of the mythic squid's existence.

Source: Smithsonian Magazine

What made the giant squid tantalizing was that their carcasses washed up reasonably often, but it was unheard of for anyone, other than fishermen, to see them alive.

Source: Slate

The reason so many carcasses have been found by fisherman is because giant squid are filled with ammonium ions, which are lighter than seawater, causing them to float after they die.

Source: "Shark Trouble: True Stories and Lessons About the Sea"

In 1997, US National Geographic tried to use sperm whales to study the giant squid. They attached video cameras, hoping to see the whale eating the squid. But they weren't successful.

Sources: Smithsonian Magazine, Sydney Morning Herald

Despite Streenstrup's early success, few people have been able to make a career out of studying giant squid alone, again because they appear so rarely. For marine ecologist Angel Guerra, who here is dissecting a giant squid, it's like a "hobby."

Sources: The Atlantic, The New Yorker

New Zealand marine biologist Steve O'Shea, whom The New Yorker dubbed "The Squid Hunter," was for a time one of the most well-known giant squid scientists. His quest began in 1996, and ended in 2011.

Asked why he kept going for so long, he told Business Insider he made a vow after a failed attempt to chronicle the life of giant squid from being a juvenile, onwards.

"At the end of it all, camera thrown in my face, tears streaming, dreams destroyed, lifeless corpses of juvenile giant squid in the palm of my hand, I recall vowing to continue my insane quest until I achieved what I'd set out to do, or someone else did," he said.

One of O'Shea's goals had been to unveil giant squid to the public in an aquarium. He wanted everyone, not just scientists and fishermen, to experience "the majesty of these animals" up close and personal, rather than watching a fleeting, grainy image on a television screen.

In 2003, O'Shea led a team trying to document the giant squid as they migrated into New Zealand waters. His plan was to grind up squid sex organs and squirt them into the water to get squids to mate with the camera lens.

He told BBC, "The freezer bag at home — to my wife's disgust — is actually full of giant squid gonad samples. We're going to grind all of this up, and we're going to have this puree coming out from the camera, squirting into the water."

He said "the dream" was to get "sensational footage of the giant squid trying to do "obscene things" with the camera. The experiment failed.

Then, on September 30, 2004, the giant squid became a little less mythic. Marine biologists Tsunemi Kubodera and Kyoichi Mori took the first-ever photo of a living giant squid off the coast of Japan's Chichijima Island, where sperm whales were recorded with suction marks.

Sources: The Sydney Morning Herald, BBC

They lowered a hook with a camera and bait down 3,000 feet. A giant squid attacked, and used its tentacles to envelop the bait, like a python envelopes its prey. After four hours of trying to free its tentacles, it died.

Sources: The Sydney Morning Herald, BBC

Tsunemi said the incident changed the perception of giant squid being a laid-back, deep-sea drifter, and gave way to an image of a quick and agile predator of the deep.

Sources: Slate, PBS

Tsunemi was on a roll. In 2006, his team published the first video of a live giant squid. It was relatively small, at 110 pounds and 11 feet long, but it was the first moving pictures of the creature. "Nobody has ever seen a live giant squid except fishermen," he told Reuters.

Sources: Slate, BBC, Reuters

In 2007, a 6.5-foot long, 550-pound giant squid washed up in Tasmania. With its tentacles it measured 26 feet — the same length as a bus. Tasmanian Museum curator David Pemberton said it was one of the biggest ever discovered. The squid was thought to be feeding on grenadier fish in Australia's cold winter waters.

Sources: Reuters, CBC, Sydney Morning Herald

In 2012, the giant squid was recorded in its natural habitat for the first time. The trick to it was using a camera, designed by marine biologist Edith Widder, which emitted a blue light, like the light produced by a type of jellyfish known as Atolla. The squid they caught on camera wrapped itself around the camera, and confirmed to the scientists that it was a predator.

Sources: BBC, NPR, Edith Widder's TED talk

Widder told the BBC there were probably millions in the oceans, since they kept so many sperm whales fed. It's because humans scared them off that more hadn't been seen. So, knowing this, she designed a camera without thrusters or a motor. The only illumination was red light that's invisible to deep-sea animals, because they have adapted to primarily seeing blue.

Source: BBC, NPR

O'Shea was on board for the momentous occasion. "This proved to be the last time I would be in front of the camera chasing this infernal animal," he said. "When Ku achieved the end game, securing the most stunning imagery of the animal alive, there was no further need for folk like me or my dreams."

More evidence was gathered in 2016, when a young female giant squid weighing 231 pounds washed up dead on the Bares peninsula in Spain. Its death pointed to the possibility that giant squid kill each other for food piracy.

In northern Spain waters, giant squid feed on fish called blue whiting, which swim near the surface. The giant squid has to ascend to the surface to catch them. Scientists thought what might have happened was that a second squid might have attacked it on its return to the deep, and stole its food.

After the altercation, scientists thought it could have floated back up to warmer water, which decreases blood flow in squid, and causes something close to asphyxiation. In such a state, it wouldn't have been able to fight the current, which dragged it to shore.

In June 2019, about 100 miles southwest of New Orleans in the Gulf of Mexico, the first giant squid was caught on camera in American waters. Nathan Robinson, who headed the team, found the clip after reviewing 20 hours hours of footage. "My heart felt like exploding," he told The New York Times.

Sources: The New York Times, CNN, Smithsonian

The discovery was important, because the giant squid was filmed not far from one of the largest deepwater oil rigs in the world. Sönke Johnsen, a Duke University biology professor, told The Times it dispelled the notion of a monster lurking in remote waters.

Sources: The New York Times, CNN, Smithsonian

"You could be out here, and beneath you are giant squid, the things of our wildest imagination! They're part of our land, they're part of our country," Johnsen told The Times.

Source: The New York Times

For now, the largest recorded giant squid measured up to 43 feet. Their cousin, the colossal squid, can grow up to 45 feet long, but scientists think giant squid can grow up to 66 feet.

Source: Smithsonian Ocean

Both colossal and giant squid have the largest eyes on the planet, up to 12 inches wide — as big as a basketball. Scientists think it's because they're necessary to see clouds of bioluminescence, which let them know when a sperm whale is approaching.

Sources: The New York Times, The Daily Mail, BBCSmithsonian Ocean

Their sharp beak in the center of their arms slices its prey into little pieces, which are then ground down by a tongue-like organ covered in teeth. When the giant squid was filmed in 2014, it didn't shred the bait, as expected, but took small bites, slowly consuming the shrimp, so it didn't choke.

Sources: Smithsonian Ocean, BBC

Giant squid have eight arms, and use two long tentacles to seize their prey. But their tentacles don't have any muscle to constrict prey. So if it comes face to face with a sperm whale, its only option is to flee.

Sources: Smithsonian Ocean, The Conversation

Clyde Roper, a retired giant squid hunter, told the BBC that if an animal was snared by enough of the suction cups, then it would be impossible to escape.

Source: BBC

American explorer and underwater filmmaker Scott Cassell told Business Insider that giant squid should be considered an "indicator species," since they don't live long, and they're prolific, occupying every ocean.

"They can offer valuable clues to oceanic health, both in distribution of species they rely on as food and for species that rely on them as food. In a way they're the center-point species," he said. "Sadly, the open sea is a terrible business partner and there is little pay-off for saving our oceans, and huge profits in killing it, overfishing, mining, shipping, and it seems that paradigm won't change anytime soon."

But much about the giant squid still remains unknown, and because of warming waters and oceans becoming more acidic, the species could die out without humans ever knowing.

Source: The New York Times

For now, they remain mysterious, elusive, and hard to catch. As Roper told BBC, due to their size and creepiness, it's easy to imagine them as violent beasts.

Source: BBC

"Humans need their monsters," he said.

Source: BBC

Teens keep outsmarting Apple's features for limiting screen time, and parents are starting to get frustrated (AAPL)

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 17:01

Kids are outsmarting parents and Silicon Valley engineers when it comes to using their phones.

Children as young as 9 continue to find new ways to avoid parental controls on their devices, according to a report from Reed Albergotti at the Washington Post.

Screen Time is an iOS tool that lets users block content, set time limits for certain apps, and set up scheduled "Downtime" when the phone can't be used — at least, that's what it should do. Almost as soon as it was released, kids starting finding ways around it. YouTube videos and Reddit posts have tips for removing parental controls in under five minutes.

Internet safety groups like Protect Young Eyes try to combat these parental control hacks by warning parents of some of the most common workarounds and how to prevent them. In its list of "12 Ingenious Screen Time Hacks," the groups found some clever workarounds. Some kids realized that changing the time zone in settings gets them out of mandatory Downtime. Other hacks include watching Youtube videos within iMessage, factory resets to undo control settings, and using Siri to send texts when iMessage is turned off. Or, to go about it another way, kids figure out their parents' passcodes using screen recording or accessing an old iTunes backup on a a Macbook or PC.

Read more: Gen Z women are less likely than millennial women to want to be reachable at all times, and it might be a sign of 'tech fatigue'

Now, parents are growing frustrated at the lack of response or help from Apple after they discover that their children have figured out how to beat Screen Time, the Post reported. Posts on Apple forums show parents going months without receiving a satisfying answer.

In a Reddit post from last year, one user posted that his 7-year-old son figured out a way around the controls, and hundreds of commenters had similar problems. In the most upvoted comment on the post, another user wrote, "I know my son is smarter than me. i just tell him when it's time for a break and have him hand over the iPad the old fashioned way."

Apple did not respond to Business Insider's request for comment on bugs or workarounds in Screen Time, but a spokesperson told the Post that the company builds users "powerful tools to manage their iOS devices and are always working to make them even better."

Apple released its parental control feature, Screen Time, in 2018 as part of iOS 12. According to the Post, two major shareholders at Apple pushed the board to introduce parental controls to address screen addiction in children.

SEE ALSO: TikTok is Mark Zuckerberg's worst nightmare and now it's reportedly poaching Facebook's employees too

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: All the ways Amazon is taking over your house

Peloton users are complaining about the slew of '80s music in its workouts after it stopped using popular songs named in a $300 million copyright lawsuit

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 16:22

  • Peloton users are complaining that the quality of music in Peloton's workouts has dropped since it was hit with a $300 million copyright lawsuit this year.
  • A group of music publishers alleged Peloton had used music without obtaining the proper permissions. Peloton removed some recorded classes and stopped using a selection of popular songs from artists such as Taylor Swift, Rihanna, and Lady Gaga in its workouts.
  • Some users said it is discouraging them from working out.
  • But Peloton president William Lynch told Business Insider in a recent phone conversation that the brand has "never been in a better position" when it comes to the music and member experience.
  • Sign up for Business Insider's retail newsletter, The Drive-Thru, to get more stories like this in your inbox every Friday.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Peloton users are complaining that the quality of music has dropped since it was hit with a $300 million lawsuit, and some say it's making them want to work out less.

Rhona Harris, who owns one of Peloton's $2,000 bikes, said she's noticed a "huge difference" in the user experience in recent months.

"The music now consists of TONS of '80s music (and not even good '80s music for the most part — think doing an ab workout to a slow jam by Lisa Lisa and the Cult Jam), a few rap artists, and a bunch of stuff I've never heard of for the most part," she said in a message to Business Insider.

"It's definitely made me steer away from the bike more than I used to. I am definitely not one of those 'I'm just so addicted to exercise' people ... I run a business from home with my husband and have four teens, so the escape of the music was a huge draw for me as I'm a huge music lover ... unless we're talking crappy '80s tracks, in which case no thanks," she said.

Read more: Exercise-bike startup Peloton filed for IPO and revealed a long list of risk factors that investors should know

In March, Peloton was sued by a group of music publishers seeking $150 million in damages in a copyright lawsuit. The publishers alleged Peloton had used music without obtaining the proper permissions.

Shortly after, Peloton CEO and cofounder John Foley wrote a letter to Peloton members informing them that it would no longer offer classes featuring the more than 1,000 songs by artists that were named in the lawsuit. These included songs by artists such as Drake, Lady Gaga, Rihanna, and Justin Timberlake, he said.

"While you may notice this in the near time, I can assure you that this will not affect your experience with our service," Foley wrote.

But many members felt differently and it wasn't long before complaints flooded in on Reddit.

"The majority of the Pro Cyclist rides are gone now," one member wrote on Reddit at the time. "This was actually a huge loss."

"Wow this is crazy. I checked to see what rides I could retake and over half of them are gone," another wrote.

"Only 53 classes still available out of the 205 I have done," another said.

The situation only got worse. In August, the National Music Publishers added a further 1,200 songs to the lawsuit and doubled the damages it was seeking to $300 million.

Fellow Peloton rider Chris Razaki told Business Insider in a Facebook message that he's lost about 60% of the rides that he took on a frequent basis.

"The frustration is that they were reactive on this when they knew it would be an issue. They also haven't communicated about it as a public company," he said.

Rhona Harris said that one of the main reasons she's been so frustrated by this is because a class in which she received a shoutout from the instructor was deleted after this lawsuit. (All live classes end up in on the on-demand section and users are free to take part in them as many times as they like after).

Libby Smith, a 41-year-old mother of two from Houston, Texas said she had a similar issue.

Smith was given a shoutout for her 100th ride in a class earlier this year, of which around 5,000 people were logged in to, she said, making it especially exciting when the instructor called out her username.

"'LibbyLibbyLuuuu, come on!'" the instructor shouted out to the crowd. "I was like, 'that's me!' she said in a recent phone conversation with Business Insider. "It was so exciting. I thought it was a really good ride physically but I also really loved the music." The class has since been removed.

Still, she doesn't see why people are complaining about the quality of the music.

"There is so much content to choose from but there are people who have been like: 'No, there's not very good music.' From what I have noticed it seems to be heavier in the hip-hop community that people are feeling limited in the music selection.

"Because I dont listen to it [hip-hop] all the time, I didn't really notice a difference but I feel like that is a hot topic on the Peloton page, people have been very opinionated about the lack of music selection that they used to have.

"But I'm like, 'there are like 10,000 workouts and you can't find one?' Like, seriously?" she said.

Two other Peloton bike users that spoke to Business Insider said they hadn't had any issues with the music or noticed a change in the music since March.

Peloton has brushed away any concerns about this. In a phone conversation on the day the company went public, Peloton president William Lynch told Business Insider that the brand has "never been in a better position" when it comes to the music and member experience.

"We have the largest catalog of music than any connected fitness provider in the world, we have over one million songs that we can play across all the genres, and we signed a major record label and major publishers," he said, adding that they are adding over 950 classes a month. He also said that Peloton hasn't lost one member over this. A spokesperson for Peloton declined to comment because of the ongoing litigation. 

Despite Lynch's comments, the company is clearly aware that music licensing could become a bigger issue for the company. In its S-1 filing ahead of its IPO, it listed this as being one of the biggest issues it could face.

"We cannot compel third parties to license their music to us," Peloton wrote in the filing. "And our business may be adversely affected if our access to music is limited.

"Given the high level of content concentration in the music industry, the market power of a few licensors, and the lack of transparent ownership information for compositions, we may be unable to license a large amount of music or the music of certain popular artists, and our business, financial condition, and operating results could be materially harmed," the company wrote in the filing.

It also said that it couldn't guarantee it wasn't "infringing or violating any third-party intellectual property rights" with the music already on its service because of the complexity of licensing agreements.

At this point, the music isn't enough to make Harris ditch Peloton completely, but she's definitely not using the bike as much as did, she said, and that's a concerning change.

If you are a Peloton user with a story to share, please contact this reporter at mhanbury@businessinsider.com.

SEE ALSO: Peloton, the buzzy exercise-bike startup that's been dubbed the 'Apple of fitness' has filed for an IPO. Here's how it compares to SoulCycle.

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Jeff Bezos is worth over $160 billion — here's how the world's richest man makes and spends his money

The top 9 shows on Netflix and other streaming services this week

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 16:15

  • Every week, Parrot Analytics provides Business Insider with a list of the nine most in-demand original TV shows on streaming services.
  • This week's includes Netflix's "Big Mouth" and Hulu's "Wu-Tang: An American Saga."
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Hulu's new limited series about the rise of the Wu-Tang Clan, "Wu-Tang: An American Saga," premiered earlier this month and has people talking.

Every week, Parrot Analytics provides Business Insider with a list of the nine most in-demand TV shows on streaming services. The data is based on "demand expressions," Parrot Analytics' globally standardized TV demand measurement unit. Audience demand reflects the desire, engagement, and viewership weighted by importance, so a stream or download is a higher expression of demand than a "like" or comment on social media, for instance.

Below are this week's nine most popular original shows on Netflix and other streaming services:

SEE ALSO: Netflix championed its ability to 'create a brand almost out of thin air' ahead of the launch of Disney Plus, citing the success of 'Tall Girl'

9. "Lucifer" (Netflix)

Average demand expressions: 24,054,021

Description: "Bored with being the Lord of Hell, the devil relocates to Los Angeles, where he opens a nightclub and forms a connection with a homicide detective."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score (Season 4): 100%

What critics said: "If you're wondering how much the show itself has changed with the switch to Netflix, the answer is... not much at all. Though it's only 10 episodes as opposed to 22, the fourth season looks, sounds, and acts very much like the previous three." — IGN (season 4)

Season 4 premiered on Netflix May 8.

8. "Wu-Tang: An American Saga" (Hulu)

Average demand expressions: 24,305,584

Description: "Wu-Tang: An American Saga is inspired by "The Wu-Tang Manual" and "Tao of Wu", and based on the true story of the Wu-Tang Clan. Set in early '90s New York at the height of the crack cocaine epidemic, the show tracks the Clan's formation, a vision of Bobby Diggs aka The RZA, who strives to unite a dozen young, black men that are torn between music and crime but eventually rise to become the unlikeliest of American success stories."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score: 79%

What critics said: "The series undeniably feels most alive when the musical elements are made central and the coming-of-age crime drama takes a back seat." — Indiewire

The limited series premiered on Hulu October 9.

7. "Good Omens" (Amazon Prime Video)

Average demand expressions: 25,773,423

Description: "Aziraphale and Crowley, of Heaven and Hell respectively, have grown rather fond of the Earth. So it's terrible news that it's about to end. The armies of Good and Evil are amassing. The Four Horsemen are ready to ride. Everything is going according to the Divine Plan … except that someone seems to have misplaced the Antichrist. Can our heroes find him and stop Armageddon before it's too late?"

Rotten Tomatoes critic score (Season 1): 83%

What critics said: "It feels like being told you're having fun rather than being allowed to have it." — Slate

Season 1 premiered on Prime Video May 31.

6. "13 Reasons Why" (Netflix)

Average demand expressions: 28,140,504

Description: "Secrets. Lies. Revenge. Everyone at Liberty High has something to hide ... and the truth is about to come out."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score (Season 3): 12%

What critics said: "It's not that shows can't evolve, but the whole conceit of 13 Reasons Why has been thrown away in favor of a luridly macabre soap opera, starring a cast of actors clearly outgrowing their parts." — Decider (Season 3)

Season 3 premiered August 23 on Netflix.

5. "The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance" (Netflix)

Average demand expressions: 29,025,867

Description: "As power-hungry overlords drain life from the planet Thra, a group of brave Gelfling unite on a quest to save their world and fight off the darkness."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score (Season 1): 86%

What critics said: "The real problem is the pacing; the show spends so much time panning over landscapes and watching puppets hang out that you can start to lose the plot." — Time Magazine (Season 1)

Season 1 premiered on Netflix August 30.

4. "The Boys" (Amazon Prime Video)

Average demand expressions: 29,564,035

Description: "'The Boys' is an irreverent take on what happens when superheroes, who are as popular as celebrities, as influential as politicians and as revered as Gods, abuse their superpowers rather than use them for good. It's the powerless against the super powerful as The Boys embark on a heroic quest to expose the truth about 'The Seven,' and their formidable Vought backing."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score (Season 1): 83%

What critics said: "There is some meat here, more than just the carnage; the show demonstrates how the actual supervillains of today use surveillance and NDAs instead of death rays and killer robots." — MetroActive (Season 1)

Season 1 premiered July 26 on Amazon Prime Video.

3. "Big Mouth" (Netflix)

Average demand expressions: 36,815,586

Description: "Teenage friends find their lives upended by the wonders and horrors of puberty in this edgy comedy from real-life pals Nick Kroll and Andrew Goldberg."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score (Season 3): 100%

What critics said: "It's gross, but not without purpose; painful, but rarely cruel; heartfelt, but never cheesy. It's also really f---ing funny." — Collider (Season 3)

Season 3 premiered on Netflix October 4.

2. "Titans" (DC Universe)

Average demand expressions: 54,528,509

Description: "'Titans' follows young heroes from across the DC Universe as they come of age and find belonging in a gritty take on the classic Teen Titans franchise. Dick Grayson and Rachel Roth, a special young girl possessed by a strange darkness, get embroiled in a conspiracy that could bring Hell on Earth. Joining them along the way are the hot-headed Starfire and lovable Beast Boy. Together they become a surrogate family and team of heroes."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score (Season 2): 80%

What critics said: "I am concerned about the pacing issues on Titans. We are in the back half of the season, and there is a lot of Deathstroke story yet to tells." — Den of Geek (Season 2)

Season 2 premiered on DC Universe September 6.

1. "Stranger Things" (Netflix)

Average demand expressions: 85,153,950

Description: "When a young boy vanishes, a small town uncovers a mystery involving secret experiments."

Rotten Tomatoes critic score (Season 3): 90%

What critics said: "By the time the final credits roll on season 3 , it's made much more of a case for itself than season 2 ever did simply by trying to be something different." — Variety  (Season 3)

Season 3 premiered July 4 on Netflix.

I tried both Amtrak's new food service and its traditional dining car, and now I understand why people were so upset about the change

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 16:07

Surf and turf was far from what I expected to eat on my first cross-country Amtrak trip.

I had previously reported on a massive backlash to some dining-car changes on shorter routes, where custom-cooked food is going by the wayside, but the promise of gourmet eats on a moving train in the middle of North Dakota seemed far-fetched to say the least.

Determined to figure out for myself what was behind the hype, I set off on Amtrak's Empire Builder in Chicago last week. Over three days — and five meals — we crossed through wide expanses of the American heartland, through towns large and small, and past beautiful snow-capped peaks.

Read more: It took me 96 hours to ride an Amtrak train from coast to coast. I'd do it again in a heartbeat.

To be sure, the food on this part of my journey was a stark difference from my introduction to dining on rails. On the first half of the trek from coast to coast, I tried Amtrak's new "contemporary" meal service, which has rolled out on some routes east of the Mississippi River.

But after Chicago, things improved massively. Here's what we ate:

SEE ALSO: Amtrak is blaming millennials as it cuts back on dining-car meals — and the internet's not buying its logic

Dinner requires reservations, which immediately signals "fancy" to me.

By the time the attendant came to take my choice, I was relegated to either 5:30 (too early) or 8:30. I went with the latter, seeing as I had two days to kill on this train.

Despite the reservation, you still have to wait to be called to the dining car.

Near each thirty-minute time slot, a dining car attendant came over the intercom inviting passengers to make their way to dinner. From there, I waited at the door as instructed to be sat at one of the roughly 12 four-top tables.

Next is where things get bizarre. Each passenger has to fill out this slip, which looks not unlike a Scantron answer sheet from school.

The bubbles have items in general categories like "poultry entree" or "healthy menu option." I assume these let the company track what's being ordered, while allowing for some flexibility.

"They've said computers are coming for the entire 12 years I've worked here," the waiter said when I asked whether the forms were eventually scanned into a computer or somehow tallied.

The menu had way more choices than I expected. And with only two dinners, I wanted to make the most of it.

I eventually settled on the "land and sea combo," because, let's face it, I'm never going to pass up a steak.

Alcohol, unfortunately, is not included with dining-car meals on this train. I also forgot to take a photo of my dessert — a cheesecake with freshly whipped cream — because of the riveting conversation with my table-mates.

After waking up in Snowy North Dakota, I needed a hearty breakfast, and pancakes did the trick.

Fluffy pancakes with crispy edges and gobs of butter — with a thick slab of pork sausage on the side — were exactly what I needed to warm up and wake up.

With all the calorie burning I got from sitting around the train all day reading and listening to podcasts, a hearty lunch was in store. I went with the cheeseburger (bacon added, of course).

My lunchtime companions ordered the steamed mussels, which looked delicious. I do regret that I had but one lunch to eat on this journey.

I chose the latest reservation slot again for my second, and final, dinner. This time I went with the salmon.

It wasn't the best fish I've ever had. It was slightly dry, but still had plenty of flavor. The spicy sauce was delicious, too. It's hard to mess up a baked potato, which I also wolfed down in no time.

My dessert this time was a chocolate bundt cake, also with whipped cream, and a caramel sauce in the middle. It put me right into a sugar coma and I passed out for the night.

The next morning, I overslept and missed the pancakes before they sold out. Instead, I went with an omelette of green onions and bell peppers, with grits and a croissant on the side.

Since things were quiet, and service had finished for the trip, I popped my head into the small service area to see the dumbwaiters that carry food up from the kitchen below.

It's impressive how many individual dishes such a small kitchen can churn out while in a moving train.

Luckily, the dining car changes that are affecting the East Coast might not come in their exact iteration to these longer routes.

"West of the Mississippi, these trains are typically two nights," Roger Harris, Amtrak chief marketing and commercial officer told me.

"They're typically a 48-hour train to the West Coast, so the onboard service is a more important part of the journey, and people have more dining events while they're traveling. It's more complicated than on the East Coast, where people generally get on in the evening, have a meal, and then get off in the evening."

That's sure to be welcome news for the travelers who look forward to these meals.

Now read:

The top 8 most popular Silicon Valley Airbnb listings tech workers book for business travel proves price and location are everything

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 15:48

  • With all the large technology companies in the area, Silicon Valley sees thousands of business travelers pass through each year.
  • The average price for one night in a San Francisco hotel in 2019 is $230.
  • Based on the 8 most popular listings, Silicon Valley business travelers tend to choose convenience and affordability over luxurious accommodations.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Silicon Valley and San Francisco are home to many of the world's biggest tech companies, so they're naturally major destinations for business travelers. Yet, they are also notoriously expensive to stay in, which can make planning travel difficult.

According to Statista, the average price for a San Francisco hotel room in October 2019 is $230, a figure which has risen throughout the year, peaking in August. This price is over $100 lower than the all-time peak price of $350 in October 2015, but it's still much higher than the $132.47 US nationwide average as of August 2019.

Many of these studio apartments and guest suites listed on Airbnb cost less than the average hotel, and are located with easy access to tech campuses. Tech workers chose low costs and limited privacy over other options; the most popular listings are private bedroom and guest suites, rather than entire apartments. 

Keep reading to see where tech workers stay on business trips in Silicon Valley.

SEE ALSO: From tiny houses to massive midcentury mansions, these 10 rental homes will improve any visit to Silicon Valley

8. A San Francisco guest suite comes with a private patio for $180.

Source: Airbnb

This listing is conveniently located in Dolores Heights, near public transportation.

7. This $95 Cupertino guest suite is an affordable option for workers looking to be near Apple's campus.

Source: Airbnb

Although it's technically a suite off the main house, this unit has a private entrance, plus it's own kitchen, bathroom, and living area.

6. This $275 ground floor studio apartment is located in a trendy San Francisco neighborhood.

Source: Airbnb

Explore San Francisco after work, or hang out in the backyard.

5. In Mountain View, $158 a night will get you a 1-bedroom apartment with easy access to Google and Stanford.

Source: Airbnb

With on-site laundry and easy access to In-N-Out, this is the perfect Silicon Valley home base.

4. For $285, travelers can stay in a sunny Mission District apartment with a private garden.

Source: Airbnb

Natural light and a queen bed make this a great place to end your day.

3. This basement studio in San Francisco is $169 per night.

Source: Airbnb

The 'mother-in-law' suite has a private bedroom, bathroom, and kitchenette.

It also comes with a gated garden, and it's within walking distance of the Castro neighborhood.

2. A room in Milpitas, on the fringe of Silicon Valley, is also popular for its easy commuting location, and it's a steal at $48 per night.

Source: Airbnb

This listing consists of a private bed and bathroom, with a separate entrance, in a Milpitas home.

The popularity of this single bedroom shows that for tech workers, location trumps every other amenity.

1. Tech workers still prefer hotels - their number one pick is this room in San Francisco's Hotel Whitcomb.

At $125 per night, this hotel in the Tenderloin district is a convenient choice, with the typical amenities that you can expect from a hotel.

149 cars including Teslas and classic muscle cars were seized by the FBI in an investigation into an alleged 'Ponzi-type' scheme. Now they're up for auction.

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 15:28

  • A collection of cars seized by the FBI in an investigation is going up for auction on Saturday, October 26.
  • The 149-car collection includes two Teslas, eleven Plymouth Road Runners, a dozen Chevrolet Camaros, nine Dodge Challengers, and a Pontiac owned by Burt Reynolds.
  • Victims of the alleged Ponzi scheme include Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway and insurance giant Progressive.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

A collection of cars seized by the FBI — including a Tesla, classic muscle cars, and a car owned by Burt Reynolds — in the investigation into allegations DC Solar ran a "Ponzi-type" scheme will be up for auction next Saturday.

The 149 cars were seized from DC Solar founder Jeff Carpoff and his wife Paulette's home and business in California and Las Vegas in December 2018. The company filed for bankruptcy shortly after, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

The vehicles are being auctioned off by the United States Marshals Service and Apple Auctioneering Co., a family-owned auction company that "specializes in the liquidation of seized assets for government agencies," according to its Facebook page.

Read more: See all the supercars seized from the son of an African dictator that just sold at auction for $27 million

"It is rare for the U.S. Marshals to hold an auction of such a stunning collection of vehicles," Chief Deputy U.S. Marshal Lasha Boyden said in a prepared statement.

The proceeds of the sale will be deposited into the USMS's seized asset account while awaiting further Court orders.

Keep scrolling to learn more about the collection of cars and its history:

SEE ALSO: This $8 million Lamborghini seized from an African dictator's son is the most expensive ever sold

The auction includes a 2014 Tesla Model S P85D…

...this 2017 Bentley Continental GT V8 S...

...and this 1978 Pontiac Trans Am that Burt Reynolds owned as a memento of the car he drove in the 1977 film “Smokey and the Bandit.”

There will also be nine Dodge Challengers up for auction, including this 1968 Dodge Challenger Super Bee.

And this 1967 Ford Mustang GT500 SE- by Riley Performance M is among seven other Ford Mustangs up for sale.

The FBI originally seized over 160 cars, boats, and motorcycles from the Carpoff couple, as well as millions of dollars in cash from their personal belongings and the DC Solar headquarters.

The couple used the money to splurge on properties such as a Las Vegas mansion, condos in Lake Tahoe, a vacation home in Scottsdale, and cars that are now up for auction.

DC Solar was accused of running an $800 million “Ponzi-type” scheme selling mobile solar generators.

This 1969 Dodge Daytona will also be up for auction. Another example was auctioned off in 2015 for a record-setting $900,000.

Investors included Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway conglomerate, which invested $340 million in DC Solar.

“In December 2018 and during the first quarter of 2019, we learned of allegations by federal authorities of fraudulent income conduct by the sponsor of these funds,” Berkshire Hathaway stated in its quarterly report to the Securities and Exchange Commission.

“As a result of our investigation into these allegations, we now believe that it is more likely than not that the income tax benefits that we recognized are not valid,” it continued.

Other investors also include Progressive, Sherwin-Williams, and multiple regional banks, Bloomberg reported.

Source: Bloomberg

Progressive recorded a $156 million loss in the first quarter, while Southern Californian bank East West Bancorp. took a $7 million hit, the Observer reported.

Source: Observer

DC Solar claimed they were making money by leasing the solar generators to end-users and paying investors back with the proceeds.

However, investigators said that more than 90% of the funds DC Solar claimed to be lease revenue was actually money from other investors.

This made the company "appear successful, and the leases appear legitimate, when, in reality, leasing the equipment generated little income and early investors were paid from funds contributed by later investors," according to a federal complaint.

The company claimed it had 12,000 generators in use. In reality, only 3,000 to 5,000 units were actually built, according to the complaint.

Each unit had an up-front price of $150,000. However, federal investigators said the investors typically paid $45,000, and then claimed $45,000 in tax credits on their investments and tax deductions for its depreciation.

"While we completely disagree with the FBI agent's claim that DC Solar was a Ponzi scheme and with any assertion that Jeff Carpoff acted improperly, we have been working closely with the government attorneys to provide resources to reimburse investor companies and banks to try to see that they do not suffer a loss," Malcolm Segal, the Carpoffs' attorney, said in an email to Business Insider in June.

Source: Business Insider

The auction will take place Saturday, October 26, in Woodland, California.

Breaking up big tech was a big topic of discussion at the most recent Democratic debate — here’s where all the candidates stand

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 15:27

On Tuesday night, CNN hosted the fourth Democratic debate for presidential candidates. Twelve candidates made the debate, and moderators asked them for their thoughts on big tech company monopolies.

This was the first time the issue of tech monopolies was meaningfully addressed in debates this year. Sen. Elizabeth Warren has been running on a platform of breaking up Facebook, Amazon, and Google, which she compares to big oil, and she recently pledged to stop taking donations from tech executives

Bernie Sanders has his own plan that would remove concentrated power from tech companies, but he largely agrees with Warren. Most of the other candidates agree that these companies held too much power and that it was a problem, but they stopped short of proposing specific plans or calling out individual companies and executives. So far, only Sanders and Warren have specific plans detailing how they will handle big tech — the most common position among candidates is support for regulation and antitrust enforcement, but not necessarily using executive power to break up tech companies.

Here's where each candidate stands on breaking up big tech.

SEE ALSO: Facebook made the unusual decision to push back directly on Elizabeth Warren and her criticism of the company, but its attempt to defend itself backfired spectacularly

Elizabeth Warren has made breaking up big tech companies like Facebook, Google, and Amazon a cornerstone of her campaign, and she has the most specific plan out of all the candidates.

Warren supports increased regulation of tech companies. She describes them as monopolies, and she says that her administration would pass legislation designating them as "platform utilities," which would prohibit companies from owning both a platform and participants, like Amazon acting as a seller in its online marketplace, for example. She would also appoint regulators dedicated to undoing anti-competitive tech mergers. 

Warren also recently pledged not to accept large donations from tech executives.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that a Warren presidency would "suck" for Facebook in leaked audio published by The Verge.

Source: Business Insider, The Verge

Bernie Sanders "absolutely" supports breaking up big tech companies.

Sanders didn't get to answer the question about tech monopolies at Tuesday's debate, but he did announce a plan for corporate America that would mandate all large companies be partially owned by workers, which would apply to big tech companies.

He told The New York Times, "public policy is so far behind the explosion of technology, that it is really one of the weaknesses of where we are right now as a country."

Sanders has also made wealth inequality a signature issue of his career, and he recently tweeted "billionaires should not exist," which would include tech executives like Mark Zuckerberg and Jeff Bezos. In fact, Mark Zuckerberg even said that he agreed.

Source: The New York Times, Vox, Business Insider

Andrew Yang believes that tech monopolies are a problem, but he said of Warren's plan that "using a 20th century antitrust framework will not work.”

Yang does believe that some tech companies should be broken up, but he also said he believes the issue is more complicated than how Warren and Sanders portray it. In May, he suggested that Silicon Valley companies should break themselves up.

Some outlets have called Yang "Silicon's Valley's candidate" for his apparent nuance and understanding of how the industry works.

He also believes in regulating AI, and he has positioned his support for universal basic income as the answer to increasing automation.

Source: The Verge, ABC News, CNBC

Sen. Kamala Harris says the decision to break up big tech should be in the hands of the attorney general.

"We need a president who has the guts to appoint an attorney general who will take on these huge monopolies, protect small business and protect consumers by ending the price fixing that we see every day," Harris said. She did not propose new antitrust laws.

Harris told the Times that protecting privacy is her priority over breaking up tech companies.

Source: The New York Times, Axios

Former Rep. Beto O'Rourke does not support breaking up tech companies.

"I don't think it is the role of a president or a candidate for the presidency to specifically call out which companies will be broken up," O'Rourke said. 

O'Rourke does support stronger regulations to protect consumer privacy.

Source: Axios, The New York Times

Billionaire candidate Tom Steyer agreed that tech companies must be broken up or regulated, but he also expressed hesitancy about what that could do to the economy.

"We have to understand that Mr. Trump is going to be running on the economy," Steyer said. 

Source: Axios

Sen. Cory Booker talked about the danger of corporate consolidation, but does not support breaking up tech companies.

Like Kamala Harris, Booker said that he would appoint an attorney general committed to enforcing antitrust law and strengthen the Justice Department. 

Source: The Verge, The New York Times


South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg has declined to call out specific companies, although he said the concentration of power should "set off alarms."

Like many other candidates, Buttigieg said he's worried about monopolies, but did not say that he would break up any companies specifically.

Buttigieg noted that he's worried about issues like privacy and data ownership.

Source: The New York Times, Politico, The Verge

Former Vice President Joe Biden has said that he's open to breaking up big tech.

Biden also recently criticized Facebook for allowing the Trump campaign to run ads with false information about his son Hunter Biden, but he didn't speak up about the issue at the debate.

Source: Associated Press, US News & World Report

Sen. Amy Klobuchar said that she wouldn't break up companies, but she would enforce antitrust legislation.

Klobuchar said she will push to strengthen the Federal Trade Commission and Justice Department and sure they're better funded. 

"We need to start talking about this as a pro-competition issue," Klobuchar said.

Source: Axios, The New York Times

Julian Castro is for cracking down on tech companies.

"We need to take a stronger stance when it comes to cracking down on monopolistic trade practices," Castro said.

Castro specifically called out Amazon and sees big tech's issues as part of a larger tendency toward monopolies nationally.

Source: Julian for the Future, The New York Times

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard has praised Warren's plan, and said that she would introduce similar legislation.

Gabbard has said that big tech companies abuse their power and has called out Facebook, Google, and Amazon specifically. Gabbard told the Times that tech giants have both invaded users' privacy and crushed smaller companies who they view as competition. 

Source: The New York Times


Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet agrees with other candidates, and has said that the antitrust division of the Justice Department should look into tech companies.

Bennet noted that every company is different from each other, but that we should "absolutely examine" whether they should be broken up. 

Source: The New York Times

Montana Gov. Steve Bullock wants to make sure that large tech companies pay taxes without loopholes.

"The fact that Amazon made $10 billion of profits and didn't pay any taxes last year, shows structural issues all together," Bullock said in an interview with the Times.

Source: The New York Times

Former Rep. John Delaney supports increased regulation and updating antitrust laws, but not breaking up big tech.

Delaney said there's more work to do around privacy and giving consumers access to their data, and ensuring consumers know how their data is being used. 

Source: The New York Times

Rep. Tim Ryan says he's not opposed to breaking up large tech companies.

Ryan says that the companies are not meeting necessary standards around privacy.

Source: The New York Times

Marianne Williamson said "I have no problem with the idea of breaking some of these companies up."

She described big tech companies as having "giantism" and said they're the free market, potentially hindering young entrepreneurs who might be the next Mark Zuckerberg or Jeff Bezos. 

Source: The New York Times

Two major changes happening in comic books could shape the industry's future — and comic shops will have to adapt to survive

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 15:15

  • The "book channel" — which includes chain bookstores and online retailers — is projected to surpass comic shops as the the largest channel for comics sales this year.
  • There are two major reasons why this is happening: Graphic novels are growing in popularity primarily through the book channel and children's comics, which are almost exclusively in the graphic-novel format, are now more popular than superhero comics.
  • The comic industry has operated for decades on a "direct market" business model, which is more skilled in single-issue comics over the graphic novel format.
  • Experts are still hopeful for the future of comic shops, though.
  • Click here for more BI Prime stories.

Comic shops have, for decades, been the main outlet for putting a comic book into the hands of readers, but they are being surpassed.

The "book channel" — which includes chain and independent bookstores, online retailers like Amazon, and the Scholastic Book Fair — is projected to pass comic shops as the largest channel for comic sales in North America this year, industry website ICv2 revealed at a post-New York Comic Con conference last week.

Milton Griepp, the ICv2 CEO, told Business Insider that this change was due to two major shifts in the industry:

  • The graphic-novel format is becoming more popular: Graphic novel print sales reached $635 million in 2018 and single-issue (or periodical) print sales were at $360 million. The gap between the two has been widening thanks largely to the book channel. Graphic-novel sales through the channel was at nearly $500 million last year, but at less than $200 million through comic shops.
  • New types of content are becoming more popular: Children's comics, which are almost exclusively sold in the graphic-novel format, have surpassed superhero comics this year as the most popular genre, according to ICv2. "Superheroes have dominated the comics business for as long as I've been in it, but there are some amazing things happening with kids content," Griepp said at last week's conference.

The chart below shows how graphic-novel sales have been increasing through the book channel but plateaued at comic shops.

So why aren't people buying children's content and graphic novels at comic shops?

The comic industry has operated since the early 1970s on a "direct market" model, in which a distributor (the main one being Diamond Comic Distributors) sells comics to comic shops on a non-returnable basis. It makes pre-orders essential to the business.

Periodical comics and children's graphic novels are distributed through a vastly different business model and comic shops struggle to balance the two.

"Comic shops have been slow to expand into kids graphic novels," Griepp told Business Insider. "Comic stores and the distribution system are focused on periodical releases but are less skilled on the book side."

More comic stores are experimenting, though, and buying from the book channel through publishers like Penguin Random House and Simon and Schuster, according to Griepp. But a big problem is that parents don't shop at comic stores. They're already in book stores and online and comic shops have been slow to catch up. 

Furthermore, tastes have just generally been shifting away from the periodical comic format that comic shops specialize in to graphic novels, where readers get a complete story, according to Griepp. He called it "binge consumption."

The streaming era is impacting the comic industry, too

David Steinberger, the CEO of Amazon's digital comics service Comixology, said at last week's conference that consumers are moving toward the binge model generally because it's "inexpensive, convenient, and there's a lot of content."

"I think that's kind of where we're headed [with comics]," he said.

But Steinberger isn't ruling out periodicals just yet, he said. And he contended Comixology could attract new readers. Since Amazon acquired the service in 2014, Comixology has launched an Unlimited subscription program and Comixology Originals, which are exclusive to the service.

Steinberger said he thinks growth in the digital-comic space will help retailers in the print business.

"Retailers were very frightened of us at first," Steinberger said at the conference. "But many of them now say, 'I had someone come in and buy the first 10 volumes of "The Walking Dead" after first trying it on digital.' So they have started to calm down and relax about that. I don't think we've destroyed anything. What we have done is give more opportunities for both established players and new players to come in and reach audiences."

The future of comic shops

Since children's comics are growing in popularity, Griepp is hopeful that a new generation of fans will emerge that could potentially move into comic shops and read more superhero comics. At 5 million copies for its most recent volume, Dav Pilkey's "Dog Man" is the most-circulated graphic novel ever, according to Griepp.

"There's a whole cohort of young readers that are being introduced to this medium and may graduate to other forms of content in the comic format over the course of their lifespans," he said at the conference.

But he firmly believes that "content is king."

"In the past, lags have always been content driven," he told Business Insider. "Superheroes are soft right now, but all it takes is one hit to turn that around. All it takes is one title to catch on and we'll be talking about comic stores growing again."

But the types of content and platforms might not be enough. Gerry Conway, the creator of such comic characters as The Punisher, told Business Insider earlier this year that the comic industry's business model is "totally unsustainable."

"There's going to have to be something that happens that's comparable to what happened in the '70s with the direct-sale market," Conway said. "That resulted in a redefinition of the distribution methodology and the market that you're aiming the books at. Both of those changes came hand-in-hand and resulted in a dramatic difference."

SEE ALSO: 'Joker' cinematographer on what star Joaquin Phoenix was really like on set and the controversy surrounding the movie

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What Netflix's roller-coaster week and earnings report say about its pricing power and growth potential (NFLX)

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 14:45

  • Netflix's third-quarter earnings on Wednesday alleviated some fears that the streaming company might be floundering just as new rivals like Disney Plus and Apple TV Plus were set to launch. 
  • Strong international growth signaled that Netflix was still the high-growth company investors thought.
  • But the company's fumble on its home turf in the US raised questions about Netflix's pricing power looking ahead.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Netflix shares rose earlier this week on a fine earnings report Wednesday that Wall Street thought would be terrible.

Then the stock soured as reality set in that the streaming-video company is still facing heightened competition at a time when its own growth is slowing.

Shares of Netflix ended the week at $275.30, down about 3.5% from where they started.

The most glaring issue in the third-quarter report was Netflix's fumble on its home turf. The company signed up fewer paid subscribers than it forecasted, in part because it was having more trouble keeping existing members around after raising prices earlier in the year. The miss came after Netflix lost subscribers in the US a quarter earlier. 

It prompted more questions from Wall Street analysts and investors about the limits Netflix's pricing power, and how much the service could realistically continue growing in the US.

"It's hard to deny the US is maturing," analysts at Macquarie wrote on Oct. 17. "We expect competition coming from Disney Plus and others especially in the US will have only modest effect on churn, but we think it will be hard for Netflix to grow much more in the US, and we suspect pricing power is limited."

Read more about what the third quarter suggested about Netflix's pricing power: Netflix's price hikes hurt growth in the US, and its pricing power will face an even greater test as new rivals launch

Netflix surprised overseas. The company came in ahead of expectations, adding nearly 6.3 million paid subscribers internationally, where analysts were estimating it would add just 6 million.

Ahead of the report, data from SimilarWeb that was exclusively shared with Business Insider signaled where Netflix was gaining ground internationally: Exclusive data that predicted Netflix's big Q2 subscriber miss suggests international growth has bounced back

While the strong international showing may have satisfied some investors, others are looking to the fourth quarter and 2020 to firm up their bets on how Netflix will stand against soon-to-be rivals like Disney Plus and Apple TV Plus.

Disney Plus is already snatching attention from streaming users, who say they plan to subscribe, and the service doesn't launch until NovemberExclusive data shows how much buzz Disney Plus, Apple TV Plus, and HBO Max have built with streaming users before launch

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NOW WATCH: Tobey Maguire's 'Spider-Man' is a classic, even though it's one of the more under-appreciated superhero films

The world's biggest video game launched a massive update after going dark for 2 days — here's everything that's changed in 'Fortnite: Chapter 2'

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 14:45

  • "Fortnite: Chapter 2" launched earlier this week, and it's a fresh start for the world's most popular video game.
  • "Fortnite" creator Epic Games closed the book on the game's first phase with a climactic event on October 13 that left "Fortnite" offline for two days.
  • "Fortnite: Chapter 2" has given the entire game a facelift, introducing a new map, new features, new weapons, and new goals.
  • Epic Games has declined to list the dozens of changes to the game and instead the creators have encouraged players to go out and see what's different for themselves.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

After going offline for two days and leaving millions of fans in the dark, "Fortnite" has returned with a massive update that creator Epic Games is calling "Chapter 2."

"Fortnite: Chapter 2" brings the biggest changes the game has seen since it launched in 2017, including a brand-new map for the wildly popular battle royale mode. Over the last two years "Fortnite" has become the world's most popular video game, welcoming more than 250 million players and earning more than $2.4 billion from in-game microtransactions.

"Fortnite" has managed to stay at the top of the video game world with weekly updates that constantly add new weapons, outfits, and special events to keep players interested. Epic Games used a seasonal model to big major changes during "Fortnite's" first phase, with a major update coming every 10 weeks. However, at the conclusion of the 10th season, or Season X, the island of "Fortnite" was sucked into a black hole for two days.

When it returned, players were introduced the the brand new world of "Fortnite Chapter 2." Here's what has changed. 

SEE ALSO: Every new Pokémon coming to 'Pokémon Sword and Shield' this November that we know about, from Alcremie to Zigzagoon

While the original "Fortnite" map changed periodically, "Chapter 2" marks the first time Epic has created a brand new island for the battle royale mode.

Motor boats are a new vehicle in "Fortnite: Chapter 2," and you can swim and fish for items too.

The new map makes use of some new features. Players can interact with the environment in new ways, with swimming effects and the ability to hide in tight spaces like barrels and haystacks.

The "Fortnite: Chapter 2" map has significantly more water and introduces boats as a new vehicle type. Players can also carry downed teammates on their back to bring them to safety.

Epic Games has declined to provide a full list of items for "Fortnite: Chapter 2," but dedicated players have figured out what you'll find on the new map.

While the map adds some new spice to the game, Epic has removed a ton of weapons from the game to simplify the game's fire fights. About two dozen weapons items have been removed from game for the start of "Fortnite: Chapter 2," leaving players with a much more basic selection. Weapons can still vary in their damage, and you can now upgrade your guns by finding upgrade benches on the map.

Of course, this is just the start of "Fortnite: Chapter 2," so Epic will probably reintroduce more of the outrageous weapons "Fortnite" is known for as players get used to the new map.

Epic has also made some improvements to "Fortnite's" battle pass system to make it easier to earn rewards.

While Fortnite is free to play, the game has earned billions by selling rewards and seasonal battle passes to players. The battle pass is essentially a checklist of goals that gives players in-game cash and unlockable items.

While the battle pass existed in the first chapter, "Fortnite: Chapter 2" makes it easier to track your progress with on-screen notifications while you play, and the goals seem to be a bit easier to achieve overall.

You can purchase the battle pass for 950 V-bucks, the equivalent of $9.50. If you're dedicated enough, you can earn up to 1,500 V-bucks with the battle pass, which is enough to buy the next seasonal battle pass and a handful of other rewards.

The major changes to "Fortnite" make "Chapter 2" a great starting point for new players.

Epic is also planning rolling changes to "Fortnite's" $40 Save the World game mode that lets players team up to take on waves of computer-controlled enemies. The game's competitive tournament series for hardcore players will begin again soon, and "Chapter 2" introduced a Squad Arena mode for players to team up and play in more serious matches.

For now, "Chapter 2" is the perfect invitation for new and returning players to give "Fortnite" a chance. The new map and overhauled item set will certainly help even the gap between experienced players and beginners.

Mozilla's CMO on what marketers get wrong about data, why it's still boycotting Facebook, and how it plans to eat into Chrome and Safari's share

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 14:00

  • Mozilla was one of the first brands to publicly denounce advertising on Facebook in the wake of the company's Cambridge Analytica scandal — and has still not returned.
  • In a wide-ranging interview with Business Insider, CMO Jascha Kaykas-Wolff explained why it's still steering clear of the platform and where it's advertising instead. 
  • He said the biggest mistake marketers make with their data is outsourcing it and that they should embrace consent-based and permission-based marketing. 
  • Kaykas-Wolff also said he takes Facebook and Google's recent privacy-oriented moves with a "very heavy grain of salt."
  • Click here for more BI Prime stories.

In early 2018, Mozilla became one of the first brands to publicly denounce advertising on Facebook in the wake of the company's Cambridge Analytica scandal. 18 months later, the company has still not returned to the platform.

Business Insider sat down with Jascha Kaykas-Wolff, the chief marketing officer of the non-profit behind the internet browser Firefox, for an interview on why the company continues to steer clear of Facebook, how it's catering to an increasingly privacy-conscious audience, and how marketers should take ownership of their data.

This interview has been condensed for clarity.

Tanya Dua: Privacy is the topic du jour. What sort of a position does that put you in?

Jascha Kaykas-Wolff: We've cared about privacy and people being in control of their data since our inception. We have an authoritative position because we make sure that if you have a relationship with us, you're very aware of the kind of information that we have. And if you give it to us, we're actually giving you some value in return, which is a pretty basic return that everybody should expect. I should be able to get you a newsletter, for example, that is in your language and that has your name in it. Marketers need to consider a new mode for operating, which is consent-based marketing, permission-based marketing.

Dua: Data is a huge piece of that. 

Kaykas-Wolff: Yes. It's making sure that you think about the data that you're collecting, you're being conscientious about how you store it and giving access to it. It doesn't matter what part of the organization you're in, you have to be personally responsible for how you protect your customer's data. This is not a practice that exists in the industry. We outsource data protection, security, and data storage to the companies that we lease software from. That's not sustainable. Also, we have to treat people like human beings by communicating to them in language that they can understand. The average Terms of Service link is 12,000 plus words, and takes an hour and a half for a regular person to read through. And it's written in legalese that we can't decipher anyway. It's lazy.

Dua: Mozilla Firefox isn't the biggest browser. Who's your target audience and how do you reach them?

Kaykas-Wolff: Apart from quality and price, people also make purchase decisions based on values. That is our target audience. We call them the "conscious choosers." They make up about 20% of the internet population. That's a big opportunity. 

Dua: How do you apply this approach to your products and marketing?

Kaykas-Wolff: We're not focused on just broad convenience, or just speeds and feeds, which is what Chrome and  other players in the space have done a very good job of. We are focused on not only giving you better privacy, but also showing you how that happens through our products. We've released a feature called enhanced tracking protection. The basic concept is that consumer data is being weaponized against us. If we show up on a website or log onto Facebook, somebody drops a cookie and then they can follow us around and do retargeting, behavioral targeting and programmatic targeting against us. Enhanced tracking protection makes sure that your personal data is protected. It blocks every third-party cookie that you show up with on the internet. 

On the marketing side, we spend directly with publishers now and we create more content. One of the challenges with marketing products that are on the internet is that it's really difficult for us to show somebody exactly what's going on. So we invest in offline events as well. An example is "The Glass Room," where we're working with artists on installations that are intended to agitate the consumers that come in and teach them what's going on with their online experience.

Dua: Doesn't blocking cookies lead to a fraught relationships with marketers and ad tech providers whose businesses rely on them?

Kaykas-Wolff: Yes. And it should, because the status quo isn't OK for consumers. When we spend our time on the internet, we're not being treated respectfully. We're being treated like an attribute inside of a database to target a retarget to us. We believe that we can be part of the change. There are other ways that the status quo changes as well, like when consumers broadly start to say that they aren't going to choose to use these kinds of products, and the governments start to get involved in legislation. Technology companies who operate the way we do can start to make change happen now.

Dua: You were one of the first brands to abandon Facebook after the Cambridge Analytica scandal. You still haven't gone back. Why? 

Kaykas-Wolff: There are very few channels that are as effective as Facebook, especially in mobile. So, it was not an easy decision. But we were really uncomfortable with consumers not having control over what is going on with their personal information on a platform of that size and that scale. We haven't gone back because as much as there has been discussion about potential product changes, it is as difficult to manage our personal information on Facebook as it was a year and a half ago. And until that changes, we're not comfortable being back on there as an advertiser. Fortunately, our marketing organizations found ways to be as effective as it were on Facebook and other channels.

Dua: How so? 

Kaykas-Wolff: We spend 60-70% of our budget on brand-related marketing activities, which show up in direct-response channels. Another 10-15% is content development, and the rest of it generally goes into events. So it's a heavy digital spend, but it doesn't include Facebook. Linear TV makes sense for us because of the cost associated with it. There's an opportunity for us to have deeper relationships with the influencer and creator communities.

Dua: Google too has made some recent changes pertaining to cookies. How does that impact you?

Kaykas-Wolff: Organizations like Facebook and Google own the biggest networks in the world. Changes they make are probably not going to impact their ability to be economically successful. So I would look at these changes with a very heavy grain of salt.

Read More: Google's looming privacy changes could shake up ad retargeting — and advertisers are scrambling to find alternatives

Dua: Do you think Facebook, Google, and Amazon need to be broken up?

Kaykas-Wolff: I don't know if I would comment on that, but very few things that are good on the internet have happened because of centralization. We need to have better distribution of power on the internet and that's going to come from more innovative companies being challengers to big companies like Facebook, Google and Amazon, which have massively dominant positions right now. 

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IoT 101: Your Essential Guide to the Internet of Things

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 12:02

You’ve likely heard the phrase Internet of Things, or IoT, at some point if you have been following any tech news in the last several years.

But at the same time, you might be scratching your head figuring out what it is or what it means past a flashy buzzword.

Simply put, the IoT refers to the connection of devices (other than typical fare such as computers and smartphones) to the Internet. Cars, refrigerators, juicers, wine racks, heart monitors, ovens, watches, and more are all candidates for connection.

A new report from Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service, called IoT 101: The Essential Guide to the Internet of Things, outlines the basics of the IoT and what this next wave of technology means to the everyday individual.

The report dives into key IoT terms, predictions and trends for the IoT in the next five years, the industries that the IoT will affect the most, and the biggest challenges facing the IoT.

To get your copy of this exclusive report absolutely FREE, simply click here.


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T-Mobile is outpacing the rest of the Big Four US carriers on value, loyalty, and satisfaction — here's what consumers say is most important when selecting a mobile provider (TMUS, S, VZ, T)

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 03:01

This is a preview of a research report from Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service. This report is exclusively available to enterprise subscribers. To learn more about getting access to this report, email Senior Account Executive Jeff Jordan at jjordan@businessinsider.com, or check to see if your company already has access.

Although competition in the US wireless carrier market remains fierce, the price war among the Big Four US carriers — Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint — began to cool over the past year.

In an attempt to avoid further competition on price, carriers began shifting their focus to adding value to their mobile plans with new offerings to differentiate from the competition. This helped average revenue per user (ARPU) start to stabilize across all carriers in Q1 2018, after declining over the last two years.

The Big Four have now begun reshuffling their unlimited plans to lure subscribers by providing more options. This strategy has been unrolling in two flavors: introducing new, expensive unlimited plan tiers loaded with an array of features and choices, while also catering to price-sensitive customers with more affordable plans that strip away extra perks like free digital content and international coverage. As a result, a new battleground is emerging, with differentiation now coming down to the value loaded in their mobile plans.

Looking forward, the US carrier market will see competitive pressure pick up due to a number of trends: 

  • The US smartphone market is creeping toward saturation. Penetration in the US hit 85% in 2018, up from 82% in 2017 and 77% in 2016.
  • eSIM technology is making it easier for consumers to switch carriers. eSIM technology is a nonphysical SIM card slot that pairs with the physical SIM card to enable dual-SIM functionality — allowing customers to switch carriers without changing to a different SIM card or device.
  • And cable mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) are edging in on US carriers' share of wireless adds. Cable MVNOs, such as Comcast's Xfinity Mobile and Charter's Spectrum Mobile, are expected to snag roughly 50% of total wireless customer net adds, or about 2.2 million subscribers, by 2020.

All of this means fostering loyalty and winning over new subscribers is more important than ever for the Big Four, making it crucial for these mobile carriers to understand consumer sentiment around their services.

In this report, Business Insider Intelligence uses consumer survey data from our proprietary panel, collected during 2017 and 2018, to evaluate which features are most important to consumers when selecting a mobile provider, as well as to determine which features would convince them to switch to the competition. It contains insights that can help telecoms guide strategic investment and marketing decisions to win and retain customers in this increasingly competitive space.

The companies mentioned in the report are: AT&T, Amazon, Apple, Charter, Comcast, Hulu, Netflix, Pandora, Sprint, T-Mobile, Tidal, and Verizon.

Here are some key takeaways from the report:

  • T-Mobile came out on top again, outpacing the rest of the Big Four US carriers on value, loyalty, and satisfaction. T-Mobile customers want to see coverage improvements, though. 
  • Verizon customers don't see much more value in its offerings than a year ago.
  • AT&T was the only carrier to show declines in all capacities. 
  • Sprint is still a good deal, but it doesn't offer much else.
  • When it comes to features, subscribers still value the basics most. However, demand for international coverage is growing.
  • 5G is the next major battleground for the Big Four, and the winner of the 5G race has the potential to leap ahead in customer volumes. 

 In full, the report:

  • Determines the features that are most important to consumers when selecting a mobile provider.  
  • Identifies which features are nice to have or essential in consumers' willingness to switch carriers. 
  • Examines consumers' feelings on emerging technologies and trends in the mobile industry, such as 5G, new network-connected devices, and the T-Mobile-Sprint merger.
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SEE ALSO: 5G in the IoT: How the next generation of wireless technology will transform the IoT

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AI IN TELECOMMUNICATIONS: Why carriers could lose out if they don't adopt AI fast — and where they can make the biggest gains

Business Insider SAI - So, 2019-10-19 02:00

In the face of rising demand for data, increasingly saturated mobile markets, and stiff opposition from legacy players, tech entrants, and startups, global telecoms are locked in a battle for market share. These market pressures have led to vicious price wars for mobile services and, as a result, declining average revenue per user (ARPU).

Making matters worse, improvements in infrastructure and technology have made telecoms largely comparable in terms of coverage, connection speeds, and service pricing, meaning companies must transform their businesses if they hope to compete.

For many global telecoms, shoring up market share under today's pressures while also future-proofing operations means having to invest in AI. The telecom industry is expected to invest $36.7 billion annually in AI software, hardware, and services by 2025, according to Tractica.

Through its ability to parse large data sets in a contextual manner, provide requested information or analysis, and trigger actions, AI can help telecoms cut costs and streamline by digitizing their operations. In practice, this means leveraging the increasingly vast gold mine of data generated by customers that passes through wireless networks — the amount of data that moves through AT&T's wireless network has increased 470,000% since 2007, for example. 

In the AI in Telecommunications report, Business Insider Intelligence will focus on the use of AI to enhance the customer experience, which can directly impact revenue. Each year, an estimated $62 billion is lost by US businesses after inferior customer experiences, according to NewVoiceMedia. We will discuss the forces driving firms to AI, pinpoint some of the top use cases of AI along the customer journey, and identify some of the leading companies in the space

The companies mentioned in this report are: AT&T, CenturyLink, China Mobile, IBM, Spectrum, Sprint, Swisscom, Telia, T-Mobile, and Vodafone.

Here are some of the key takeaways from the report:

  • Telecoms have long struggled with their customer experience image: In 2018, telecommunications had the lowest average Net Promoter Score (NPS), a measure of how favorably a company is viewed by customers, of any industry.
  • Companies that use advanced analytics, which can be accessed via AI, to improve this image and the overall customer experience are seeing revenue gains and cost reductions within a few years of adoption. 
  • Most (57%) executives believe that AI will transform their companies within three years, per Deloitte's State of AI in Enterprise. 
  • Overall, telecoms should focus on a hybrid organizational model to move beyond pilots to launch full-scale AI solutions that can have the biggest impact on their companies.

In full, the report:

  • Outlines what factors are leading telecoms to turn to AI technology. 
  • Describes the benefits of using AI in telecommunications. 
  • Highlights players that have successfully implemented AI solutions.
  • Discusses how telecoms should move forward with AI projects. 

Interested in getting the full report? Here are three ways to access it:

  1. Purchase & download the full report from our research store. >> Purchase & Download Now
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