Today is a big day with multiple events vying for my attention. By which, of course, I mean that once again both the Sharks and Warriors have playoff games.
Google CEO Sundar Pichai, speaking at I/0 2019 on Tuesday. Photo: Google
Tuesday's Google I/O keynote paraded the usual new hardware and software, but the biggest development was the emphasis on privacy that the company wove through each of its rollouts.
Why it matters: The move is, of course, timely: In the wake of scandals and data spills, all Big Tech is talking privacy, even if individual companies have very different agendas.
The big question: Is Google really making a fundamental shift — or is it just applying window dressing.
Details: Google's privacy moves include...
Between the lines: The conventional wisdom is that Google wants and needs all the data it can get because the ads that fuel its profits depend on that data. In other words, Google would need to upend its business model to offer significantly more privacy.
Executives insist that isn't the case. The really valuable data, they say, comes from knowing what a user is looking for and where they are at any given moment. That's far more relevant to advertisers than the vast troves of historical and demographic data that Google has amassed over the years.
Our thought bubble: Giving Google the benefit of the doubt doesn't mean assuming that it is acting purely out of altruism. If its business is advertising, especially search, it needs to make sure that consumers trust Google enough to use the products that generate its core revenue.
Yes, but: Features and commitments are a start, but only time will tell just how much privacy Google is really committed to.
We've already seen an example of this when Google stopped scanning your Gmail to serve advertising.
What they're saying: Google, like Facebook, argues that there's a reasonable and valuable tradeoff between the data users provide and the free services they get.
Anki's Vector relies on the cloud for much of its capability. Photo: Anki
The news of Anki's impending demise sent loyal owners begging for some way to make sure that its cloud-dependent robots would outlive the company that created them.
What's new: In a post to its website on Tuesday, Anki offered a vague promise of a reprieve.
"In order to provide long term support of our products, Anki has contracted our most senior leaders and hands-on engineers across all the technical areas involved in maintaining the operation and functionality in the existing products and apps."
"[W]e have arranged for any support in the event [intervention] does become necessary. Vector is the only product with a notable cloud component, and the contracted team is heavily staffed in that area."— Anki statement
Yes, but: The post didn't say how much functionality the devices would retain, or for how long.
Tim Cook joined SAP CEO Bill McDermott (r) at its Sapphire conference to announce an expanded partnership. Photo: Apple
For years now, Apple has used the iPhone as its way into large businesses, who tend to be customers that shunned its computers except for corners like the design department.
The backdrop: Apple has done this steadily, over years, inking partnerships with established players, including IBM, Salesforce and SAP.
Driving the news: On Tuesday, Apple expanded its partnership with SAP, broadening the range of apps for iOS, while also bringing some of its software to the Mac.
Why it matters: Apple doesn't break out its enterprise sales, but they are clearly nothing to sneeze at. Beyond corporate adoption of iPhones and iPads, many large businesses today offer employees a choice of Macs or PCs, while Apple machines often dominate the startups of Silicon Valley.
In its very first quarterly earnings as a public company, Lyft beat analysts' revenue expectations, but that was overshadowed by the large loss it reported, per Axios' Kia Kokalitcheva.
Lyft also announced a new partnership with Waymo, Alphabet's self-driving car unit, through which the latter will deploy 10 vehicles on Lyft's service in Phoenix.
Why it matters: Lyft beat Uber to the public markets, but its stock price has plummeted since debuting on the public market at the end of March.
By the numbers:
I love it when a couple of my favorite things come together, in this case basketball and Legos.