Jan 23, 2017

Hot in Silicon Valley: Questions swirl around Xiaomi

China's Xiaomi loses a top exec

Hugo Barra, a VP at the Chinese mobile device maker, announced on Sunday he'll be leaving the company next month and moving back to Silicon Valley after 3.5 years. Hiring him away from Google was considered a big get for Xioami at the time.

Why now? Barra says in a Facebook post that his lifestyle at Xiaomi has started to take a toll on him and his health. At the same time, he says Xiaomi has grown enough that it can continue to thrive without him. After some time off, he'll be "embarking on a new adventure back in Silicon Valley."

What about Xiaomi? Barra's departure undoubtedly raises questions about Xiaomi's health.

  • Earlier this month, the company declined for the first time to release sale numbers, with CEO Lei Jung admitting the company grew too fast.
  • Xiaomi's meteoric rise made it one of the most valuable private companies in the world, but whether it can continue to justify remains to be seen.
  • The company has yet to make a meaningful dent in the U.S. market.
Samsung's Note 7 investigation

Samsung officially concludes that the faulty and exploding batteries in its Note 7 smartphones were due to flaws in the design and manufacturing of the batteries

The details: Specifically, Samsung blames a design flaw in the batteries from one its manufacturers, which caused short circuits. Its other manufacturer—which supplied the replacement batteries—had a welding defect that could lead to fires.

Next steps: Nevertheless, Samsung takes full responsibility and has devised a new 8-point testing plan for all lithium ion batteries in its devices.

Go deeper

Mass shooting in Milwaukee: What we know so far

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett in 2012. Photo: John Gress/Corbis via Getty Images

Six people died in a shooting at the Milwaukee Molson Coors brewery complex on Wednesday, including the shooter, Mayor Tom Barrett told reporters at an evening press conference with local police.

What's happening: Police said "there is no active threat" just before 6 pm ET, but noted the scene remains active. Police chief Alfonso Morales told reporters that officers have "more than 20 buildings we have to secure" at the complex and they do not currently have all employees accounted for, as more than 1,000 were at the complex during the shooting.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 42 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Trump assigns Pence to lead U.S. coronavirus response


President Trump announced at a press briefing Wednesday evening that he'll be putting Vice President Mike Pence in charge of leading the administration's response to the coronavirus.

The big picture: In the wake of a market sell-off and warnings from health officials that there's a real threat of the coronavirus spreading in the U.S., Trump sought to reassure the nation and Wall Street that the U.S. is "ready" for whatever comes next.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

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