Amazon Launches Parcel Delivery Service; Uber And Waymo Settle Self-Driving Car Feud

by 2 weeks ago

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THE HEADLINES

Estimated Read Time: 3 minutes and 18 seconds

 

WAY MO’ MONEY, WAY MO’ PROBLEMS

File this one under “things that get Silicon Valley hot and bothered.” The most intriguing trial to take place in California since that time OJ definitely didn’t murder Nicole, pit two of tech’s juggernauts against each other.

Waymo, Google’s self driving vehicle unit claimed that Uber stole trade secrets by purchasing Otto, an autonomous car startup founded by a former Waymo employee. That employee Anthony Levandowski, was a self-driving vehicle savant who was reportedly targeted by then-Uber-CEO Travis Kalanick for his know-how.

But before Judge Judy could hand down a stern yet comedic daytime-TV-worthy ruling, the two companies settled after only 4 days of trial. A tentative settlement would have given Waymo $500M worth of equity in Uber but as the trial began it looked like Uber had at least a snowballs chance in hell.

In return for stronger language barring Uber from using its technology (read: flux capacitor) to advance its autonomous vehicle fleet, Waymo settled for $245M worth of Uber equity.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “Isn’t there a better industry to disrupt than one where most people are paid minimum wage and its biggest value-add to society is that it gets drunk people home? You know, like fighting cancer.”

 

WHAT CAN BEZOS DO FOR YOU?

What’s a blossoming e-commerce Goliath to do when packages aren’t delivered in time for the holidays? In 2013, Jeff Bezos and Co. decided to build out their own logistics network.

That network has manifested into delivery drones, ocean freight and even complete strangers entering your home. And now Amazon will run their own parcel delivery service. Because as Newman said, “When you control the mail, you control … information.

Shipping with Amazon or “SWA” for short, will launch in the next few weeks in LA and will pick up third-party Amazon orders and deliver them to customers.

So what is Amazon up against in UPS and FedEx? FedEx boasts 40 years of experience, roughly 650 aircraft, 150k trucks and 400k employees. Bezos calls that locker room material.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “Call me a troll, or just call me jealous but every time Bezos does something big I like to bring him back down to size by Tweeting a picture of him at the launch of the Amazon Fire Phone.”

 

IF YOU CAN’T BUY ‘EM, JOIN ‘EM

Viacom announced that they are planning to launch their own streaming service this Fall. The media company owns Paramount Pictures and various television channels like Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and MTV. That’s right, MTV still exists. 

They are looking to enter the streaming game as opposed to licensing out their content to the likes of Hulu. The company already limits the shows it sells to other streaming services which has hurt it in the short term. With this announcement, things are starting to make sense.

With Nickelodeon, Viacom has an interesting market that most other streaming services don’t have: kids. CFO, Wad Davis said they have tens of thousands of hours of content ready to roll out. You won’t want to get between a pre-teen and ‘Angry Beavers.’

Water Cooler Talking Point: “Streaming services are just becoming the new cable channels. Each service has its own content. Pretty soon there will be commercials and we’ll be complaining about how much our streaming bill is. You heard it here first.”

 


IN OTHER NEWS

 

  • Purdue Pharma says, while slurring its words, that it will stop promoting Oxycontin to US doctors and will layoff part of its sales force as pressure mounts and evidence points towards the company’s role in the opiod crisis. 
  • NBC executive Jennifer Salke will take over the head of Amazon Studios, filling the role Roy Price vacated amid allegations of sexual misconduct. Price had nothing but incredibly sexist things to say about the choice.
  • The dire flu season is bolstering orange juice sales that had been on the decline for much of the last 5 years. Witch doctor and shaman healer HMOs have also seen an uptick in revenue as “desperate times call for desperate measures.”
  • The government shut down for just over 5 hours on Friday before Congress came to a bipartisan agreement on a $400B national budget.
  • US indices were up Friday:
    • DOW: +1.38%
    • S&P 500: +1.49%
    • NASDAQ: +1.44%

 


Mondays are for motivation …

TALKING SHOP

Professional motivation, tips, tricks, hacks & resources carefully-curated by yours truly. Something you’d like to see featured? Shoot me an email at team@thewatercoolest.com

 

TED-UCATED

It seems like everyone with a contrarian thought, a PowerPoint projector and a YouTube account is a TED talker these days. Quite frankly there are more outlandish ideas floating around the internet than at your local Scientology convention. But I digress.

The forward thinkers over at The DataFace created an incredible TED Talk search engine, the way only they know how: with an over-the-top technologically dazzling graphic …

 


TAGSAmazonBusinessbusiness newscareer adviceJeff BezosuberViacomWaymo

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