#1 | Airbnb likely to opt for direct listing instead of IPO

Airbnb is planning to go public in 2020 through a direct listing rather than an initial public offering (IPO). This approach helps companies save money they usually pay to investment banks in underwriting fees and the market chooses the stock price. A direct listing also allows employees and investors to cash out while the company won’t issue new shares or raise new capital. The home-share startup reported positive earnings in 2017 and 2018 and is in a strong financial position. But before it goes public, investors want Airbnb to solve regulatory problems in key markets such as Paris and New York City. Slack and Spotify have also opted for direct listing before and a growing number of investors are arguing that this tactic has many benefits and should be seriously considered by other startups. Read more here: https://bloom.bg/2IkVUzy



#2 | Spotting deepfakes remains a challenge even for tech giants

Google released thousands of “deepfake” videos to provide researchers with data needed to build AI-powered detection tools. The goal is to prevent nefarious actors from using deceptive content to spread misinformation and engage in personal, corporate, and political sabotage. AI-enabled fakery is turning into a major concern as the 2020 presidential election looms on the horizon. Facebook, Microsoft, and several startups are also developing detection technologies, while lawmakers mull around several bills that tackle “deepfakes”. But experts warn that video manipulation goes beyond “deepfakes” and can involve various types of edits that can mislead people and evade detection algorithms. And as AI technologies become ever more advanced, it’ll become increasingly challenging to root out fake content from the digital world. Read more here: http://bit.ly/32ZNXrf



#3 | Tesla sets another delivery record but falls short of forecasts

Electric-car maker Tesla says it delivered 79,600 Model 3 cars and 17,400 Model S and X vehicles during the third quarter. And although that’s record net orders, it still falls short of investors’ expectations of 99,000 deliveries during the last three months. CEO Elon Musk told employees that Tesla “has a shot” at delivering 100,000 cars in the fourth quarter, which would enable the company to fulfill its promise of delivering between 360,000 and 400,000 vehicles this year. The US carmaker is now shipping to more countries than ever before, including China, Australia, Taiwan, the UK, and several markets in Eastern Europe. But it’ll take time for new orders to translate into deliveries. Read more here: https://cnb.cx/2M8arQa



#4 | A new feature makes Google Assistant more accessible

A new Android feature called Action Blocks makes it possible to pre-write Google Assistant commands and add them as home screen shortcuts. Users can assign an image to each action and that’s especially useful for people with cognitive disabilities such as dementia or Down syndrome, who find it challenging to use standard multi-stage processes. Google hopes that these improvements will make it easier for people to do usual Android tasks like calling friends or listening to music. Other users can also benefit from pre-configured actions that in many ways function like Siri Shortcuts on iOS. Google says that the new feature is being tested and the release date is still to be confirmed. Read more here: http://bit.ly/2obFHG0



#5 | Microsoft unveils foldable Surface Duo phone that runs Android

Microsoft has unveiled a foldable Surface Duo phone that will be available around holiday 2020. The device runs Android and is powered by a Snapdragon 855 processor, featuring two 5.6-inch displays that can rotate 360 degrees. And although several design elements haven’t been finalized yet, the Surface Duo will be able to run two different apps at once and operate in landscape mode. This announcement marks the return of the tech giant to the smartphone market following the demise of the Windows Phone platform in 2017. Read more here: http://bit.ly/2OizT89


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