STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

PACIFIC for April 23: Google's Facebook turn

What's Next: Robots: Amazon is ramping up development on Vesta, an in-home robot that moves around the house...

Posted: Apr 23, 2018 5:06 PM
Updated: Apr 23, 2018 5:06 PM

What's Next: Robots: Amazon is ramping up development on Vesta, an in-home robot that moves around the house and provides Alexa-like features, per Bloomberg. Vesta is named after the Roman goddess of the hearth, home and family, and could be in your home by 2019. Amazon says it won't comment on "rumors and speculation."

---

Today's PACIFIC

Good morning. Welcome to Earnings Week. Monday: Alphabet ... Tuesday: Verizon ... Wednesday: Facebook, Twitter, AT&T, Comcast, Viacom, Qualcomm ... Thursday: Amazon, Microsoft, Intel, Baidu, Starbucks.

What else:

- DOJ vs. AT&T: Justice Dept. calls rebuttal witnesses; closing arguments by the end of the month. Our colleague Hadas Gold is in the courtroom.

- Cambridge Analytica: Whistleblower Christopher Wylie testifies before the House; Facebook CTO Mike Schroepfer appears before British parliament.

- White House Correspondents' Dinner weekend: We'll be in Washington for the parties, brunches, gossip, scuttlebutt, etc.

Sign up for PACIFIC: The new CNNMoney newsletter about the center of change and innovation

---

Alphabet Soup: Google: The New Facebook

What's Next: Alphabet under the klieg lights. The Google parent company collects a huge amount of user data and, like Facebook, hosts a lot of controversial content, yet it has largely escaped scrutiny while Mark Zuckerberg gets put through the ringer.

The mounting scrutiny on Alphabet and Google could force Larry Page et al to face the music.

"Google gathers more personal data than Facebook does, by almost every measure-so why aren't we talking about it?" by WSJ's Christopher Mims:

- "Google Analytics is far and away the web's most dominant analytics platform. ... Google Analytics tracks you whether or not you are logged in."

- "Google also is the biggest enabler of data harvesting, through the world's two billion active Android mobile devices."

"YouTube ran ads from hundreds of brands on extremist channels" by CNN's Paul P. Murphy, Kaya Yurieff and Gianluca Mezzofiore:

- CNN's investigation found that ads from over 300 major brands and five US government agencies ran on YouTube channels promoting Nazism, white nationalists, pedophilia, North Korean propaganda and more.

- Yurieff emails: "Major brands - such as Amazon, Hilton, Hershey, Netflix and Under Armour -- told us they have guardrails and filters in place to prevent their ads from appearing against content that doesn't align with their values. But it happened anyway."

- Will it come up on the earnings call?: Yurieff notes Google CEO Sundar Pichai said on the last earnings call that YouTube was working to stop abuse on its platform after criticism from advertisers, content creators and users.

Meanwhile ... Pichai is set to cash in $380 million this week when the shares he received before a 2014 promotion vest on Wednesday.

---

The old Facebook

Facebook spent more on lobbying in Q1 2018 than ever before, per Recode's Kurt Wagner:

- Facebook "forked over $3.3 million to steer lawmakers on privacy, security, online advertising, and transparency efforts, among other issues."

Facebook ads VP Rob Goldman has a new post explaining what data advertisers have on you:

- Goldman argues that users are not the product, seeking to rebut the favored narrative of Facebook's critics and competitors.

---

What SFO-JFK is reading

NYT's Nellie Bowles on Facebook's Campbell Brown: "Since joining [Facebook] in 2017 to repair its frayed relationship with the news media, many have considered the former CNN and NBC anchor as as little more than window dressing. Others see her as a more insidious figure - a telegenic personality with close ties to conservative figures who can offer Facebook's outreach the veneer of journalistic credibility. ... But a year and a half into her tenure, Ms. Brown ... is emerging as a fiery negotiator for her vision of Facebook as a publishing platform."

Sign up for PACIFIC: The new CNNMoney newsletter about the center of change and innovation

---

Going Public: Tencent: $25 billion IPO?

What's Next on Wall Street: "Tencent Music Entertainment Group, China's largest music-streaming company, is preparing what would be one of the biggest technology IPOs ever," by WSJ's Maureen Farrell and Julie Steinberg:

- "The initial public offering, potentially coming in the second half of 2018, would be one of the largest deals of the year and ... could value the business in excess of $25 billion."

- "It would be the fourth-biggest U.S.-listed tech IPO on record ..."

- "Investors are excited about Tencent Music because of its connection to Tencent Holdings ... as well as its position in the marketplace."

The Big Picture: Chinese companies' power on Wall Street is driven in large part by the sheer enormity of the Chinese population.

- Tencent Music has 700 million monthly active users.

And you thought Amazon surpassing 100 million Prime members was impressive. Meanwhile, Spotify has around 71 million subscribers while Apple Music has just over 40 million.

---

Fallen Apple: HomePod orders halved

My colleague Jordan Valinsky emails:

Apple is cutting orders of its HomePod speaker from half a million per month to 200,000 amid disappointing sales, per DigiTimes.

By that measure, Apple will only sell around 2 to 2.5 million HomePods in its first 12 months of availability.

Why isn't HomePod selling? Our best guesses:

- It's more expensive than other home assistants ($349).

- It has far fewer features than other home assistants.

Sign up for PACIFIC: The new CNNMoney newsletter about the center of change and innovation

---

What Elon Musk is reading

@KanyeWest: "I really love my Tesla. I'm in the future. Thank you Elon."

Flashback: Musk at SXSW, when asked who inspires him: "Kanye West, obviously."

---

Going Vertical: How DOJ vs. AT&T ends

My colleague Hadas Gold explains how Judge Richard Leon can rule in the DOJ-AT&T case, which will hear closing arguments at the end of the month:

- "Leon has more than a binary option ... [he] can essentially force a third option, where he tells AT&T and Time Warner he'd allow the merger to proceed but only if they made certain changes to the transaction."

- "One possibility ... could be an adjustment to the arbitration offer that ... guarantees Turner will arbitrate any contract disputes with distributors, like a cable company or a new streaming service, and guarantees against blackouts in which distributors lose access to certain channels during an impasse in negotiations."

- "Earlier this month, Leon asked one witness ... whether he'd be open to an arbitration offer that was not as 'blind' and 'mutually beneficial, mutually fair.' That led many observers to wonder if Leon was leaning toward approving the merger, but with an altered arbitration agreement."

The Big Picture: The hold up on AT&T-Time Warner is a hold up on all media M&A. What Judge Leon decides will set the terms for consolidation strategies for years to come, including media acquisitions by big tech.

Sign up for PACIFIC: The new CNNMoney newsletter about the center of change and innovation

---

Talk of Tinseltown: What Netflix execs make

- CEO Reed Hastings: $24.4 million in 2017, up 5% from 2016.

- CCO Ted Sarandos: $22.4 million in 2017, up 18.5% from 2016.

- Reminder: Netflix says it will spend up to $8 billion on original and licensed content in 2018 and has an estimated $20+ billion in debt.

---

What Next: "Letter from Tokyo: Japan's Rent-a-Family Industry," by The New Yorker's Elif Batuman: "People who are short on relatives can hire a husband, a mother, a grandson. The resulting relationships can be more real than you'd expect."

See you tomorrow.

Want this in your inbox every morning? Sign up for PACIFIC: The new CNNMoney newsletter about the center of change and innovation

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 32888

Reported Deaths: 1188
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds259141
DeSoto172418
Madison132635
Jones114049
Neshoba100473
Rankin98213
Harrison96911
Lauderdale92280
Forrest91643
Scott77915
Jackson68917
Copiah62015
Washington61710
Leake58919
Lee56220
Holmes56041
Oktibbeha55227
Wayne54515
Warren53218
Yazoo5236
Lowndes50913
Grenada5067
Leflore50053
Lamar4917
Lincoln48434
Pike45416
Monroe42534
Sunflower4208
Lafayette4094
Covington3755
Attala36523
Panola3646
Bolivar35618
Newton3479
Simpson3453
Adams31518
Tate31011
Pontotoc3046
Marion30012
Chickasaw28719
Claiborne28410
Winston2808
Noxubee2728
Jasper2676
Pearl River26532
Marshall2583
Clay24911
Smith22911
Union21810
Clarke21025
Coahoma2056
Walthall2056
Lawrence1872
Yalobusha1807
Kemper17914
Carroll16811
Humphreys1569
Tallahatchie1454
Calhoun1414
Montgomery1392
Tippah13811
Itawamba1378
Hancock13413
Webster12711
Jefferson Davis1134
Tunica1133
Jefferson1103
Prentiss1103
Greene1059
Amite1043
Wilkinson939
George913
Tishomingo891
Quitman811
Choctaw754
Alcorn742
Perry724
Stone692
Franklin452
Benton420
Sharkey370
Issaquena101
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 46424

Reported Deaths: 1032
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson5486155
Montgomery4246105
Mobile4219136
Tuscaloosa234644
Marshall177011
Madison15548
Lee143337
Shelby135724
Morgan11285
Walker98525
Baldwin9809
Elmore96215
Dallas9109
Franklin90216
Etowah79013
DeKalb7615
Chambers64327
Autauga63612
Butler63228
Tallapoosa60469
Russell5680
Unassigned52226
Limestone5181
Houston5106
Lauderdale5016
Lowndes47821
Cullman4705
Pike4525
Colbert4266
St. Clair4162
Escambia4118
Calhoun3875
Coffee3863
Covington3727
Bullock36810
Barbour3572
Talladega3237
Marengo31711
Hale31521
Dale3020
Jackson3022
Wilcox2948
Sumter28512
Clarke2836
Winston2663
Chilton2622
Blount2511
Monroe2412
Pickens2386
Marion23613
Conecuh2177
Randolph2169
Macon1999
Choctaw19712
Bibb1961
Greene1868
Perry1791
Henry1363
Crenshaw1253
Washington1187
Lawrence1090
Cherokee1037
Geneva840
Lamar801
Fayette721
Clay692
Coosa591
Cleburne391
Out of AL00
Tupelo
Few Clouds
87° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 73°
Feels Like: 94°
Columbus
Few Clouds
79° wxIcon
Hi: 79° Lo: 72°
Feels Like: 83°
Oxford
Scattered Clouds
84° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 71°
Feels Like: 90°
Starkville
Scattered Clouds
77° wxIcon
Hi: 76° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 78°
WTVA Radar
WTVA Temperatures
WTVA Severe Weather