Google Russia files for bankruptcy, Netflix is losing its most loyal subscribers, and an IT admin gets seven years in prison for wiping four servers.
That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now, welcome to Hashtag Trending. It’s Friday, May 20th, and I’m your host, Samira Balsara.
Google Russia is filing for Bankruptcy after the Russian government seized its bank account in the country. In a statement to the Register, a Google spokesperson said that the account seizure made the office unable to function as it could no longer meet its financial obligations. Staff working in Google Russia’s office were offered to move to a subsidiary or leave their jobs. The Wall Street Journal reported that most of the employees have chosen to move to Dubai. This account closure signals the end of Google’s Office in Russia; the office had begun relocating its employees in March, when Russia first began invading Ukraine.
The Netflix fiasco has dissuaded even its most loyal subscribers. According to a report from the Information, accounts older than three years attributed to 13 per cent of cancellations in the first quarter of 2022. While Netflix estimated that it would lose 2 million subscribers, the survey data from analytic firm Antenna showed a whopping 3.6 million people who have canceled. In addition to losing subs, Netflix also has to worry about retaining new subscribers; in 2021, new accounts, or those who have subscribed for less than one year, made up 70 per cent of cancellations. Last quarter, 60 per cent of cancellations were made by new subscribers.
An IT admin was sent to jail for seven years after wiping several financial databases. Han Bing, a data admin for a Chinese real estate brokerage, apparently wanted to prove a point after his supervisors ignored a security breach that he discovered. The authorities were able to find evidence through triangulating the company’s server access records and security camera footage. Most of the financial records were unrecoverable, and for that, Bing was given a seven-year sentence for damaging computer information. The damage extends beyond losing customer records; because the company had to pause operation during its recovery, it had to pay $30,000 for being unable to pay its employees.
Apple has long been rumoured to want to get into the electric vehicle market. Since 2015, rumours have spurred that the company is working on various technologies to build a car. In the latest development, netizens believe a render of a windowless car could be what Apple has in store. The car is rumoured to be fully autonomous and can park itself, with the steering wheel only emerging during emergencies. It would also have Apple’s beloved Siri AI voice assistant built in. Additionally, the car would feature an in-vehicle virtual reality entertainment system. But why without windows? In its report, Daily IO explained that this could be to reduce motion sickness, and passengers would gain a window-like experience through their VR headsets. Add a grain of salt to all of this optimism as this all sounds way too futuristic, especially for Apple, who is known to make cautious and proven investments in technology. Regardless, the Daily IO article pinned the car’s release date at 2025. As expected, Apple has not confirmed this product.
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 briefings 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 inbox every day. Also, catch the next episode of Hashtag Tendances, our weekly Hashtag Trending episode in French, which drops every Thursday morning. If you have a suggestion or a tip, drop us a line in the comments or via email. Thank you for listening, I’m Samira Balsara.