EU privacy body warns of privacy risks in Google, Fitbit deal – Finance- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

Google’s US$2.1 billion (A$3.2 billion) bid for fitness trackers company Fitbit could pose privacy risks, the European Data Protection Board (EDPB) warned on Thursday, adding its voice to other critics of the deal.
Google announced the deal in November last year, as it seeks to compete with Apple and Samsung in the crowded market for fitness trackers and smart watches.
Fitbit, whose fitness trackers and other devices monitor users’ daily steps, calories burned and distance travelled, would give the US tech giant access to a trove of health data gathered from Fitbit devices.
Such access is worrying, the EU privacy watchdog said.
“The possible further combination and accumulation of sensitive personal data regarding people in Europe by a major tech company could entail a high level of risk to privacy and data protection,” it said.
It urged the companies to assess their data privacy requirements and privacy implications in a transparent way and mitigate possible privacy and data protection risks before seeking EU antitrust approval for the deal.
Google said it would never sell personal information to anyone and that Fitbit health and wellness data would not be used for its ads while Fitbit users would have the option to review or delete their data.
“Protecting peoples’ information is core to what we do, and we will continue to work constructively with regulators to answer their questions,” the company said in a statement.
European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, who will vet the deal, in November voiced her concerns about big companies targeting data-heavy rivals.
The European Commission on Thursday in an emailed comment said it had yet to be formally notified.
“It is always up to the companies to notify transactions with an EU dimension to the European Commission,” it said.

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Easy rider: compare which rideshare app offers passengers and drivers the best deal | Technology – Blog – 10 minute

On 16 March, Chinese ridesharing app Didi will launch in Sydney. Already available in Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth, the app promises “a safe, reliable and value-for-money way to get around”, according to Lyn Ma, Didi Australia’s general manager.
That “value-for-money” statement will certainly be true in the first few weeks following the app’s launch – it is offering riders who sign up before launch a 50% discount on their first four weeks of rides, up to the value of $1200.
Didi is one of four major players in the Australian ride hailing market, alongside American giant Uber, Indian-based Ola and Estonian company Bolt, which was previously known as Taxify. All four apps vary slightly in their base pricing, ride offerings and compensation for drivers. But for consumers and drivers, there’s not a clear answer for which app is “best”.
The cheapest ride hailing app in Australia
“In your particular city, the cheapest one is going to be the new one on the market,” says Graham Cooke, the insights manager at comparison site Finder. Uber is typically slightly more expensive than its competitors, but “in terms of the base price they tend to be pretty similar”.
The real savings with ride sharing come from discount codes and offers, which are most aggressive when an app is new to an area and trying to win market share. For Sydneysiders, that means Didi is currently the best value for money, while in Melbourne, Cooke suggests looking to Bolt, which only recently arrived in that market.
After the initial launch period, ride hail prices will even out – at which point checking emails and texts for regular discount codes and offers will give riders the best value for money. “If you sign up for Ola and Bolt, you’ll tend to get regular discount offers and emails,” Cooke says. “Especially if you’re using the service for a while and stop using it. They’ll send you tailored discount offers.”

Even if you don’t currently have a discount code, the best way to get the cheapest fare is to “sign up for all four and play them off each other” by getting an estimated fare from each app and then selecting the cheapest option.
Cooke suggests all ride hailing apps tend to be cheaper than taxis, although large surges can change that. “Without surge, [ride sharing] is 30-40% cheaper than a taxi.”
Many ride hailing apps still have surge pricing – where prices rise when demand is higher – but Cooke says they are no longer transparent about surges. Instead, each app will present customers with a fare estimate. “The only way to tell is to jump into the apps and get a quote at the time.”
While the cheapest door-to-door ride hail service fluctuates with every trip, Cooke notes that UberPool, which routes trips with multiple passengers and drop-offs, “is quite probably the cheapest way to get to A to B” if you’re prepared to sacrifice a bit of convenience.
The ridesharing app that’s best for drivers
Like riders, ridehail drivers are offered incentives like lower fees to sign on to new apps. However, Les Johnson, secretary of the Ride Share Drivers’ Association of Australia, suggests that these are not all they’re cracked up to be. “They all practise the art of smoke and mirrors. It doesn’t matter which company you look at, the rate’s at a level where it’s not sustainable for drivers, and that’s why we have such a high turnover of drivers in Australia.”
Johnson says the commission rates vary between apps, but “the companies that have the lower rates of commission are struggling for market share, so slowly but surely they’re cutting the rates. They’re saying the drivers are earning more money but that’s not completely true.”
Johnson says that as with riders, who should be checking each app before a trip, “at the moment the only way a driver can maximise his or her earnings is to be on multiple platforms, so they’re getting the maximum number of jobs”.

Johnson believes that none of the major platforms currently offer drivers a fair rate after commission, GST and vehicle operating expenses. Licensing and regulations vary from state to state, but in Johnson’s home state of Queensland, he says, the most financially sustainable way to drive a private vehicle is to build up a loyal clientele and book work directly with customers whenever possible, rather than relying on ride hailing apps.
He says new drivers “come in, they’re told that there’s a rainbow at the end of the street. After a couple of months they realise that it’s not that and they opt out.”
The most convenient ride hailing app
Uber is the most established ride hailing platform in Australia. “They came in before it was even technically legal,” Cooke says.
Because Uber has been in the market for longer, has strong name recognition and is available in far more areas, it is often the only available option. “It’s more reliable in that way,” Cooke says. He also notes that Uber offers functionalities the other apps do not yet have, such as synchronisation with expense reporting software like Concur for SAP.
However, as the ride hailing market matures and grows, he adds, “the more competition there’ll be – and that should be better for consumers”.
The safest ride hailing app
The most important safety rule of using any ride hailing app is to ensure the vehicle and driver match the name and description supplied at the time of booking, Cooke says. “They all have insurance on the rides. As long as you make sure that it’s the correct car, it should be safe enough.”
However, ride hailing services have a far-from-spotless record on assault, for passengers or drivers. One service that places safety at the heart of its business is Shebah, an Australian ridesharing company that only hires female-identifying drivers, and only accepts rides from women, or men who are travelling with children. Shebah is also the only ridesharing app that is able to transport unaccompanied minors.
“We chose to do it. Taxis can take children as well,” says Georgina McEncroe, Shebah’s CEO. “There’s nothing lawfully stopping other rideshare drivers from offering that service. It’s a policy decision of theirs not to transport unaccompanied minors.” All Shebah drivers “meet our regional leaders face to face. They have contact with us. They’ve all completed working-with-children checks. It’s a very different set-up.”
Shebah cars are also equipped with child seats, which the drivers have been trained to properly fit. Shebah does work like a traditional ridesharing service, with real-time hailing, but it is still a small company and McEncroe recommends customers book rides in advance, “especially if they’re travelling with children”.

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Govt-wide SAP, Oracle support deal signed with Rimini Street – Strategy – Software- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

The federal government has introduced a new whole-of-government volume sourcing agreement with Rimini Street to improve agency access to third-party support for SAP and Oracle software.
The four-year deal is aimed at cutting support costs for what the Digital Transformation Agency describes as “major software products” by combining demand across government.
Agencies will be able to use the agreement to source third-party support for SAP and Oracle software products, which are widespread across government, as well as for Salesforce.
The deal is also expected to gives the government additional support options for its forthcoming whole-of-government enterprise resource planning system, dubbed GovERP.
The Department of Finance is currently working with shared services hubs across government to design and develop a GovERP prototype underpinned by SAP’s S/4 HANA platform.
“Government agencies of all sizes have easier access to an affordable alternative for their enterprise software maintenance and more options to consider in support of the GovERP initiative,” Rimini Street A/NZ regional manager Emmanuelle Hose said.
“This agreement provides an opportunity for government organisation to take back control of their IT roadmaps and drive innovation while lowering costs.”
The deal comes nine months after the DTA brokered its last whole-of-government deal with Amazon Web Services (AWS) at the cost of $65 million over five years.
The DTA has now entered into a total of six whole-of-government deals (Rimini Street, AWS, SAP, Microsoft, Concur and IBM), with further deals expected to be signed in the future.
“The DTA continues to expand whole-of-government volume sourcing agreements to ensure that agencies have ready access to the best pricing, terms and conditions that leverage the buying power government,” DTA chief Randall Brugeaud said.
iTnews understands the DTA is also continuing to work with Oracle to line up a government-wide arrangement.
Rimini Street currently works with a number of state government departments, inkling the NSW Department of Communities and Justice and Victoria’s Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources.

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Britain ‘reasonably confident’ of US trade deal despite Huawei concerns – Strategy – Security- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

Britain takes US concerns about its use of Huawei equipment seriously but is confident a trade deal with the United States will be among its first after leaving the European Union, its foreign secretary Dominic Raab said on Monday.
US officials have hinted future trade talks could be affected by Britain’s decision last month to grant Huawei a limited role in its 5G mobile network, frustrating a global bid by the United States to exclude the firm from the West’s next-generation communications systems.
“We listened and take the concerns of our American friends very seriously,” Raab said in response to a question about the issue.
“We are reasonably confident that we can do a free trade agreement (with America) in that first wave of post-Brexit trade deals,” Raab added, during a visit to Singapore.
“We have had a good conversation about Huawei and the one thing we all recognise is there has been market failure in terms of high-trust vendors being able to provide telecoms infrastructure.”
Last month, Britain said it would cap at 35 percent the involvement of “high-risk vendors”, such as Huawei, in the non-sensitive parts of its 5G mobile network. Excluding Huawei altogether would have delayed 5G and cost consumers more, it added.
Yet some senior members of Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservatives have demanded that Huawei must not have a role, a position described on Sunday as a “kind of witch-hunt” by China’s ambassador to Britain.
Britain is in talks with America, Australia, Canada, and others on future technological innovations that could challenge Huawei’s dominance in the field, Raab said.
“For 5G, the sooner we can build up our pool of high-trust vendors the less reliant we will be on high-risk vendors,” he added.
Raab, who is visiting Asia to seek free trade deals after Brexit, said he also expected Singapore to be in the first wave of post-Brexit trade deals.
He will travel to Malaysia on Tuesday, wrapping up a tour that included Australia and Japan.

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Amazon wants Trump to testify on ‘order to screw Amazon’ in Pentagon deal – Cloud – Networking – Storage- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

Amazon Web Services said on Monday it was seeking to depose President Donald Trump and Defense Secretary Mark Esper in its lawsuit over whether the president was trying “to screw Amazon” when it awarded a Pentagon contract for cloud computing to rival Microsoft Corp.
The Amazon.com Inc unit alleged that Trump, who has publicly derided Amazon head Jeff Bezos and repeatedly criticized the company, exerted undue influence on the decision to deny it the US$10 billion contract.
Known as the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure Cloud, or JEDI, the contract is intended to give the military better access to data and technology from remote locations.
In the lawsuit, Amazon said it seeks discovery “demonstrating exactly how President Trump’s order to ‘screw Amazon’ was carried out during the decision making process.”
Without this, “the Court cannot objectively and fully evaluate AWS’s credible and well-grounded allegations about bias and bad faith,” the lawsuit said.
An Amazon spokesperson said that “President Trump has repeatedly demonstrated his willingness to use his position as President and Commander in Chief to interfere with government functions – including federal procurements – to advance his personal agenda.”
“The question is whether the President of the United States should be allowed to use the budget of the DoD to pursue his own personal and political ends,” the spokesperson added.
The lawsuit also cites other instances of interference by President Trump.
For example, his alleged interference in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers award of a US$400 million border wall contract to Fisher Industries in December 2019 and a report that Trump intervened in the General Services Administration’s solicitation of bids to move the FBI’s headquarters to a new campus in the suburbs.
The Pentagon and White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Last month, Amazon filed a motion in court to delay the Department of Defense deal with Microsoft until a court rules on its protest of the contract award.
The procurement process has been delayed by legal complaints and conflict of interest allegations. Defense Secretary Mark Esper has denied that there was bias and said the Pentagon made its choice fairly and freely without external influence.

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White House adviser says UK’s 5G actions won’t hinder trade deal – Strategy- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

Britain’s decision to grant China-based Huawei Technologies a limited role in its 5G network despite US concerns will not hinder efforts to reach a US-UK trade deal, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said on Friday.
“We will be working with our British cousins on 5G. We think we can work with them and show them options. We’d love to do a free trade agreement,” Kudlow told Fox Business Network.
Asked if a reportedly contentious call between US President Donald Trump and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson could interrupt the planned deal, Kudlow said: “No, it wont” and cast doubt on the report.
The Financial Times on Thursday reported that Trump was “apoplectic” in the call with Johnson last week following the UK decision on 5G despite the Trump administration’s warning over security concerns.
Britain’s decision could impact intelligence information sharing between the United States and its top ally, though Kudlow has previously said no decision has been made yet.
The FT, citing unnamed officials in London and Washington, said Trump was livid during his exchange with Trump. Johnson’s office declined to comment on the report.
“I know there’s a lot of adjectives coming out of that phone call, I don’t think that that’s exactly true,” Kudlow told the Fox Business Network on Friday.

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Emirates agrees five-year Olympique Lyonnais sponsorship deal- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

Emirates has strengthened its relationship with the world of sport after agreeing to a five-year sponsorship package with French League one team Olympique Lyonnais.
Edging out incumbent Hyundai, Emirates will serve as the main sponsor for the club until June 2025 which will see the airlines ‘Fly Better’ logo will be emblazoned across the squad’s shirts and training kits.
Jean-Michel Aulas, President of Olympique Lyonnais stated: “Emirates embodies elegance and quality of service and is a premium brand with a proven track record in football and sports sponsorship. This long-term partnership is an excellent opportunity for both our brands.”
HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Emirates’ group chairman and chief executive, added: “With Olympique Lyonnais, we’ve found a partner that mirrors our ‘Fly Better’ brand promise of striving to achieve the highest levels of success, and there is already a connection between Lyon and Dubai with Emirates’ daily flights between both cities.
“This partnership is more than just a commercial deal, but also reinforces Emirates’ investment and economic contribution to both the Lyon region, and France as a whole, a country where we have been present for nearly three decades.”
During the agreement Emirates will also enjoy marketing rights to physical assets such as the Groupama Stadium, ensuring further brand exposure among fans.
The Lyon deal follows an agreement by Emirates to extend its Arsenal sponsorship until 2024.

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UPS inks electric van deal with Arrival to test Waymo automation – Strategy- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

United Parcel Service said on Wednesday it was ordering 10,000 electric delivery trucks from UK-based Arrival Ltd and teaming with self-driving startup Waymo as the package carrier works to cut costs and tailpipe pollution.
The UPS/Arrival partnership includes a minority investment from the world’s biggest package delivery firm and lands four months after customer-turned-rival Amazon ordered 100,000 electric vans from Rivian, a Michigan startup partially funded by the world’s largest online retailer.
UPS said a six-month test run with Waymo, the self-driving unit of Google parent Alphabet, would start next month.
UPS will pay Waymo to use autonomous Chrysler Pacifica minivans to shuttle packages from Phoenix UPS stores to a nearby sorting centre several times a day, starting with one route.
The Arrival and Waymo projects “will help us continue to push the envelope on technology and new delivery models that can complement the way our drivers work,” said Juan Perez, chief information and engineering officer at UPS.
Financial terms were not disclosed for either deal.
Amazon’s growing delivery network is putting pressure on UPS and rival FedEx Corp, which are racing to squeeze more profits from surging e-commerce deliveries that are upending their business models.
Electric vehicles have no tailpipe pollution – which is critical as more cities worldwide crack down on emissions from idling delivery vehicles. Broad corporate adoption of electric vehicles could cut sticker prices and make them cheaper to operate and maintain than fossil fuel-burning vehicles. Eventually, removing human drivers might cut costs further.
Perez said the Waymo test would not replace the driver on the affected route. That driver will still make the scheduled daily UPS Store stop.
For Waymo, UPS counts as the latest in a series of moves to expand use of its robotic “Waymo Driver” system beyond robo-taxis.
Waymo recently expanded testing of its autonomous trucks and vans to Texas and New Mexico. Waymo also has extended a deal with vehicle retail chain AutoNation to deliver parts to Phoenix-area stores. AutoNation in turn services Waymo vehicles.
Atlanta-based UPS plans to take ownership of all 10,000 Arrival zero-emission electric vehicles by 2025. The first trucks should hit streets in Paris, London and undisclosed US cities in the second half of this year.
Executives from Arrival and UPS said the trucks had a modular “skateboard platform” that allows users to customise vehicles with swappable parts that reduce production and maintenance costs.

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Broadcom inks new $15 billion deal with Apple to supply wireless chips through mid-2023 – Blog – 10 minute

Recap: When it’s not busy trying to acquire Qualcomm for the exorbitant sum of $117 billion, Broadcom is forging new deals with big tech giants like Apple for essential components. The latest was spotted in a recent SEC filing and shows the two companies reached a new multi-year agreement that sent Broadcom’s shares up two percent in after-hours trading.
Broadcom’s tech is slowly eating the world, even as many of us are unaware of its presence in many of our favorite gadgets. The company’s reach is so powerful that it has US and EU regulators probing every aspect of its business to make sure it doesn’t abuse its dominance in key semiconductor markets.
Recently, the silicon giant revealed in an SEC filing spotted by the Wall Street Journal that it has signed a new agreement with Apple for “the supply of a range of specified high-performance wireless components and modules.” The company already has a deal inked in 2019 for “RF components and modules” which are used in iPhones and iPads, making up about $10 of the bill of materials if you go by JP Morgan’s estimates.

This could mean that Broadcom could rake in no less than $15 billion in revenue over the next three and a half years, which is a big win for the company.
It’s no secret that Apple is one of Broadcom’s largest customers, accounting for somewhere between 20 to 25 percent of its net revenue over the last two years. Back in December, the rumor mill was abuzz with reports that Broadcom was exploring a potential sale of its RF division for around $10 billion.
Given Apple’s appetite for strategic acquisitions that give it more control over key components that go into its products, it wouldn’t be surprising to see it snapping Broadcom’s RF unit. The only deal-breaker might be the asking price, as Apple only paid $1 billion for Intel’s modem division in a deal latter described by one of the parts as grossly undervalued.

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Mackay council signs multi-million dollar “smart-water” app deal – Software- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

Image by Kgbo – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=53019634

Mackay Regional Council in Queensland has signed a multi-million dollar deal to commercialise its “smart-water” application, called MiWater.
The deal gives Australian smart water meter and sensing company Taggle Systems rights to the MiWater intellectual property and existing customer contracts.
The council claims that more than 110,000 homes and businesses use MiWater, which informs them about water leaks and high water usage. The information comes from smart water meters and sensors.
More than 14,000 Mackay residents also use the associated myH2o website to keep track of how much water they use. The council claims the software helped identify and notify Mackay consumers of about 35,000 water leaks in 2018. Other councils also use the software.
Overall, MiWater has helped identify leaks totalling six billion litres of water, according to Mackay Regional Council.
The software has also helped Mackay win two innovation awards.
Mackay Regional Council started developing the software in 2014, with development work handled by the 11-person Mackay company Tyeware.
Taggle Systems supports the software for Mackay Regional Council and other users and will continue to do so.  
It plans on working with Tyeware to further develop the software and expand its user base in Australia and overseas.
The value of the deal has not been made public.

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