Hashtag Trending, Feb. 24, 2021 – Facebook/Australia saga continues; Apple dons smartphone crown; CEOs 2021 priorities

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Facebook will restore news pages in Australia as tensions requiring publishers to pay for content continue, Apple is taking back the smartphone crown, and CEOs are shifting priorities through COVID curveballs.

It’s all the tech news that’s popular right now. Welcome to Hashtag Trending! We hope you had a good weekend. It’s Wednesday, February 24, and I’m your host Baneet Braich.

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Facebook says it will now restore news pages in Australia after it had stopped Australian users from sharing or posting news links in response to the government’s proposed media bargaining laws. Earlier on, Canada condemned Facebook’s decision to block news, with the Canadian Heritage Minister saying that Facebook’s actions were imperilling public safety. He says Facebook’s move would not stop Canada from moving ahead with legislation requiring social-media platforms to fund news. Some experts say the one-week experiment was a good reminder for publishers to diversify or die. [LinkedIn]

Apple is the smartphone champion again.  Apple has secured the top position in iPhone sales for the first time in four years selling more iPhones than any other smartphone maker in the world in the final quarter of 2020, according to Gartner data. The iPhone giant sold nearly 80 million iPhones in the fourth quarter, marking a 15% increase over the same period in 2019. It’s a sign that the new 5G iPhone 12 series “is a hit in the marketplace,” according to CNBC. This is fueling up the competition with Samsung, which ended up selling more smartphones over the full year.

The pandemic has thrown many curveballs at CEOs across the world. Canadian CEOs cite technology infrastructure and regulatory concerns as their top challenges in the next 2-3 years, according to IBM’s 2021 CEO Study. More than half of Canadian CEOs say technology infrastructure is their most critical challenge, followed closely by regulation at 49 per cent and cyber risk at 46. Unsurprisingly, looking back at 2020, 56 per cent of Canadian CEOs named empowering a remote workforce their most critical challenge. The survey of 3,000 chiefs found that leaders at high-performing organizations are most concerned about managing an  “anywhere” workforce. In the workers’ survey, 50 per cent said flexible work arrangements were indeed the most important offering provided by their employer.

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That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now. Hashtag Trending is a part of the ITWC Podcast network. Add us to your Alexa Flash Briefing or your Google Home daily briefing. Make sure to sign up for our Daily IT Wire Newsletter to get all the news that matters directly in your mailbox every day. I’m Baneet Braich, thanks for listening!

 

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada
Baneet Braich
Baneet Braich
Baneet Braich is currently studying journalism and political science at Carleton University. Born and raised in Abbotsford, BC she embraces the media arts as a multimedia content creator from videography, photography, writing news stories, and creating social media content. She loves spontaneous adventures, dance, and the occasional slice of lemon cake.

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