Jul 24, 2017

Axios Login

Ina Fried

TGIM. Yeah, don't worry. That's still not a thing.

Q&A: Flipboard CEO McCue, on curating in "fake news" era

Mike McCue has basically spent his whole career helping people navigate the digital world. He began at browser pioneer Netscape, then founded Tellme, which let people access information with their voice, and, for the past several years, has run Flipboard, a digital magazine app.

What Flipboard does differently: While Google can serve up the entire internet, McCue said there is something to be said for offering up a curated experience, especially in an era of "fake news."

"We don't try to include everything on the web," McCue told Axios' Sara Fischer. "Google indexes billions of pages. We focus on stuff people are already curating — so it already [has a] selection bias of good content — to further try to promote sources that we know are quality."

And, it's finally turning into a business. Flipboard was cash flow positive in February, the first time that's happened in the company's 7-year history, McCue said.

Read more from Sara's interview.

Carmakers better accelerate if they want to win self-driving race

If traditional carmakers want to beat out the software industry in the race to autonomous cars, they may need to start acting more like their Silicon Valley rivals. Alphabet's self-driving car unit Waymo has been particularly aggressive in trying to find partners, while even Uber and Lyft have looked for ways to collaborate with self-driving partners.Carmakers' attempts: Traditional automakers have also been trying to find allies, but fear has slowed the pace of collaborative progress. Despite announcing a partnership to work on autonomous driving together last December, Honda and Waymo haven't made much progress on that front, the companies told the Wall Street Journal."Nothing concrete" has been planned yet by the two companies, Honda Motor CEO Takahiro Hachigo told the Journal. "We are still at the study stage and haven't come up with specific research or businesses."Why it matters: Though Honda insists that it collaborates well with other companies, the slow-moving partnership with Waymo highlights the divergence in approaches between the carmakers and Silicon Valley.History lesson? Attempting to build closed and proprietary autonomous driving technology could also leave automakers with the same fate as Nokia and Blackberry, which lost the smartphone race to the platform-oriented Apple and Android, George Hotz, founder of self-driving car startup Comma.ai, recently told Axios.

Kia has more here.

Glitch-filled Pokémon Go Fest shows game at its worst — and best

The early headlines about Pokémon Go Fest, including ours, were all about all the issues that plagued the game's first in-person event.

What happened: Clearly things could have started a lot better in Chicago's Grant Park on Saturday. There were hours-long lines to get in and for a long period of time many people couldn't connect to the game's servers to play. By early afternoon Niantic was apologizing, offering refunds, and giving those at the event $100 in game credit in an attempt to make amends.

But by the end of the day, Niantic had the people in Chicago — and around the world — doing what they wanted: Out playing the game. Despite the glitches, Niantic rolled out the long-awaited legendary Pokémon and hard-core game fans all over the world began teaming up to catch the newly released creatures.

Uber's Southeast Asia rival grabs $2 billion

Grab, Uber's biggest rival in Southeast Asia, announced Sunday night that it has raised $2 billion in new funding from existing investors SoftBank and Didi Chuxing, China's biggest ride-hailing company. The Singapore-based company adds that it could soon raise an additional $500 million from new and existing investors. At the close of the round, Grab's post-money valuation will be above $6 billion, a source told Axios.

Why it matters: Despite still unproven long-term economics, the world's ride-hailing startups continue to attract billions in fresh investment.

Kia has more here.

Siri, make it stop

The computer has already taken a toll on the quality of action films, with at least a couple car chases per movie replaced by heroes tapping on keyboards. But things could be getting worse.

The Rock + Siri: Apple and Dwayne Johnson have teamed up on "Dominate the Day" where The Rock co-stars opposite Siri -- yes, that Siri. There was some concern (and some badly misplaced enthusiasm) when Johnson teased the effort on his Facebook page and people thought it was a real film.

Thankfully, the "movie," which was released late Sunday night, is actually a 3-minute spoof on YouTube that is part of a new ad campaign to demonstrate all the things Siri can do: from getting the weather to taking selfies to ordering up a Lyft.

My thought bubble: Unfortunately, I fear that while Apple was doing this tongue-in-cheek, we don't have too long before some action hero is using their phone's personal assistant to get the bad guy.

Take note

On tap: The Black Hat security conference is taking place in Las Vegas and runs through Thursday...Google parent Alphabet reports earnings after the close.

Trading places: SoFi chief revenue officer Michael Tannenbaum is leaving the company, per TechCrunch, the latest in a string of departures at the online lender.

ICYMI: Axios' Steve LeVine says some experts are pushing back against "fear" of robots and artificial intelligence... Norwegian companies are working to develop an autonomous electric container ship to begin commercial service by 2020...Reuters has exclusive report that private equity firm KKR is close to a deal to buy WebMD...The Verge says that Instagram is pushing restaurants to be more colorful and always ready for their close-up.

After you Login

If you need some beauty to start the week, check out this amazing time-lapse video of the Northern Lights in Alaska, posted by National Geographic.

Ina Fried