Here’s the latest news from the technology industry, which is coming under increasing global scrutiny.
European Commission Proposes Regulations, Actions On Artificial Intelligence
The European Commission proposed new regulations and actions designed to transform the bloc into an international center for “trustworthy artificial intelligence (AI),” according to a press release. The commission said that an inaugural legal framework on the technology and a novel coordinated plan with member states will “guarantee” the security and fundamental rights of individuals and companies. Those developments will also bolster AI adoption, innovation and investment throughout the continent.
“By setting the standards, we can pave the way to ethical technology worldwide and ensure that the EU remains competitive along the way,” Margrethe Vestager, executive vice president for a Europe fit for the Digital Age, said in the release, which noted that the “new rules” will be applied in the same manner throughout each member state “based on a future-proof definition of AI.”
Canada’s New Budget Proposes Digital Services Tax
Canada’s upcoming budget proposes a digital services tax for large internet companies, a sales tax for digital platforms and online shopping warehouses, and a luxury tax, Reuters reported, citing unnamed sources. The digital services tax on large internet companies will begin at the start of next year, and a sales tax for digital platforms and online shopping warehouses will begin in July. Online shopping warehousing encompasses the storage of tangible merchandise prior to their digital sale, while online platforms include suppliers based in other countries that don’t have a physical location in Canada that sell offerings like digital video gaming and mobile programs.
Match, Spotify Representatives Testify Before Senate Subcommittee
Last week’s “Antitrust Applied: Examining Competition in App Stores” Senate subcommittee hearing encompassed testimony from representatives for Match Group and Spotify Technology SA, according to a report in SiliconANGLE. Jared Sine, chief legal officer of Match, indicated that approximately 20 percent of all sales are sent to Google and Apple. The executive said the funds could be used for innovations or could go back to the consumer, according to the report.
Individuals representing Google and Apple indicated that the charges the firms bring in are intended to make sure people don’t download unsafe programs and to bolster safety, according to the report.
“We all appreciate app stores and the roles that Apple and Google have played in helping to create many of the technologies that have defined our age,” U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-Minnesota) said, per the Silicon Angle. “We’re not angry about success. It’s about new products coming on. It’s about new competitors emerging. This situation, to me, doesn’t seem like that’s happening.”
Alphabet Looks for Expanded Drone Rights for Wing
Wing, the Alphabet subsidiary, is aiming to grow its delivery drone operations to enable flight control via a central command center. By running from a centralized location, Wing indicated that its drone deliveries would be more efficient. Wing has been piloting its system in Virginia since 2019 and has made thousands of deliveries to residences without an accident, according to a published report.
Facebook to Introduce Clubhouse-Like Audio Features
Facebook plans to add Clubhouse-like audio features. Mark Zuckerberg, the company’s CEO, made the announcement last week, saying that the social media company is looking into developing technology that lets users engage in live conversations through audio. The functionality will be named Live Audio Rooms.
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