Google formally rejects EU antitrust charges

Google on Thursday formally rejected European Union antitrust charges of unfairly promoting its shopping service and blocking rivals in online search advertising, paving the way for EU regulators to rule next year on these issues and potentially impose hefty fines. The U.S. technology giant's rebuttal in the shopping case came six years after the European Commission opened an investigation prompted by complaints from rivals such as Microsoft and a host of European and U.S. rivals. It also issued a separate charge sheet against its online search advertising product AdSense for Search at the same time.

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Google formally rejects EU antitrust charges

Google tries new approach with voice on Pixel phone

About six months ago, people working on hardware and the voice-activated Google Assistant for the Pixel phone started sitting next to each other at the company's Mountain View, California headquarters, hammering out minute details of its first phone. The new seating arrangement illustrated a much larger shift underway at Alphabet Inc's Google, which crashed Apple Inc's smartphone revolution eight years ago by giving away its Android software and letting handset makers do the rest. Google software now runs on 85 percent of the world's smartphones, but as voice control threatens to replace touch as the primary means of using a hand-held device, the company is experimenting with a different approach – more akin to Apple's tight integration of hardware and software.

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Google tries new approach with voice on Pixel phone

California proposes giving more freedom to test self-driving cars

By Alexandria Sage SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – California will allow companies more leeway in testing self-driving cars on public roads while restricting how the nascent technology is advertised under revised draft regulations released on Friday. The original draft regulations by the Department of Motor Vehicles were criticized by some tech companies, such as Alphabet Inc's Google, and carmakers as being overly restrictive and stifling innovation. California has been at the forefront of the fast-growing autonomous vehicle industry, fueled by technology companies in Silicon Valley, and is one of a handful of states to have passed regulations enabling self-driving car testing on public roads.

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California proposes giving more freedom to test self-driving cars

Google to buy software developer Apigee for $625 million

By Julia Love and Natalie Grover SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Alphabet Inc's Google said on Thursday it is acquiring software developer Apigee Corp in a deal valued at about $625 million, the tech giant’s latest effort to claim a greater share of the lucrative cloud business. The service is critical for businesses transitioning to the cloud, Diane Greene, who runs Google's cloud computing division, said in an interview. Cloud computing is the increasingly popular practice of using remote internet servers to store, manage and process data.

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Google to buy software developer Apigee for $625 million

Livestream of Kim Dotcom extradition hearing a first for New Zealand

By Charlotte Greenfield WELLINGTON (Reuters) – A New Zealand judge gave permission on Tuesday for the hearing of German tech entrepreneur Kim Dotcom's appeal against his extradition to be streamed on YouTube, making it the country's first court case to be broadcast on the Internet. The six-week hearing opened in Auckland this week, nine months after a lower court ruled Kim Dotcom could be sent to the United States to face copyright infringement and money-laundering charges over the filesharing website Megaupload. The case has been closely watched by the media industry and developers in the file-sharing business for signs of how far the United States is willing to go to protect U.S. copyright holders.

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Livestream of Kim Dotcom extradition hearing a first for New Zealand

Alphabet executive steps down from Uber board amid growing competition

By Heather Somerville SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Alphabet executive David Drummond, who has been a director on the Uber Technologies Inc [UBER.UL] board for close to three years, has stepped down, the ride-hailing firm confirmed on Monday. Drummond joined the board after Alphabet's venture capital arm GV in 2013 invested about $250 million in Uber, among the firm's largest investments and a deal in which Drummond was involved. “I recently stepped down from Uber's board given the overlap between the two companies,” Drummond said in a written statement sent to Reuters.

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Alphabet executive steps down from Uber board amid growing competition

Incoming Viacom CEO plans investor campaign as shakeup looms

By Jessica Toonkel NEW YORK (Reuters) – As Viacom Inc prepares for the impending departure of CEO Philippe Dauman, his interim replacement, Thomas Dooley, is planning to reach out to investors, setting a new tone for a company that has kept communications minimal. Dooley plans to set up meetings between shareholders and heads of Viacom networks, which include Comedy Central, MTV and Nickelodeon, two people familiar with the situation said on Friday. Viacom has been embroiled in a legal battle between Dauman and some members of its board on one side and controlling shareholder Sumner Redstone and his daughter, Shari Redstone, on the other, over control of Redstone's $40 billion media empire, which includes Viacom and CBS Corp .

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Incoming Viacom CEO plans investor campaign as shakeup looms

AT&T, Apple, Google to work on ‘robocall’ crackdown

By David Shepardson WASHINGTON (Reuters) – More than 30 major technology and communication companies said on Friday they are joining the U.S. government to crack down on “robocalls,” automated, prerecorded phone calls that regulators have labeled a “scourge.” AT&T Inc , Google parent Alphabet Inc , Apple Inc , Verizon Communications Inc and Comcast Corp are among members of the “Robocall Strike Force” that held its first meeting with the U.S. Federal Communications Commission. The strike force will report to the FCC by Oct. 19 on “concrete plans to accelerate the development and adoption of new tools and solutions,” said AT&T Chief Executive Officer Randall Stephenson, chairman of the group.

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AT&T, Apple, Google to work on ‘robocall’ crackdown

Google executive quits self-driving car project

Alphabet Inc's Google had named Urmson chief technical officer of the project after it hired former Hyundai executive John Krafcik to be chief executive of the project. Urmson, who joined the project when it was launched and has been a public face of Google's autonomous vehicle efforts, testified before a U.S. Senate panel on autonomous cars in March. “Going to take some time and get some perspective from outside of Google,” he wrote in a text message to Reuters.

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Google executive quits self-driving car project

Uber to invest $500 million in global mapping project: FT

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Ride-hailing service Uber [UBER.UL] has decided to invest $500 million into an ambitious global mapping project to wean itself off dependence on Google Maps and pave the way for driverless cars, the Financial Times reported on Sunday. The San Francisco-based company is ramping up spending in new technologies such as mapping and driverless cars following new investments into the company earlier this year. A representative for Uber could not immediately be reached for comment. (Reporting by Catherine Ngai; Editing by Marguerita Choy)

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Uber to invest $500 million in global mapping project: FT