Hashtag Trending January 26th- Layoffs hit IBM and SAP, smartphone shipments decline, Google shuts down pro-PRC channels

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The layoffs affected IBM and SAP, smartphone shipments declined, and Google shut down more than 50,000 People’s Republic of China (PRC) misinformation channels.

This is all the tech news that is trending right now. Welcome to trending hashtags. It’s Friday, January 27th and I’m your host, Asha Pamma.

IBM announced it was cutting 3,900 jobs as part of an asset divestment and missed its annual cash flow target. IBM said the layoffs are related to the spinoff of its Kindrill business and a portion of its AI unit Watson Health — which will result in a $300 million charge in the January-March period. Meanwhile, SAP also announced that it is laying off 3000 employees. The German software giant said it planned to undertake a “targeted restructuring programme” to “strengthen its core business” and improve efficiency. IBM and SAP join layoffs by major tech companies, including Amazon, Google and Meta, which have laid off 48,000 workers since the beginning of the year.

source: yahoo finance And techexplore

Worldwide smartphone shipments declined 18.3% year-on-year to 300 million units in the fourth quarter of 2022 (4Q22), according to preliminary data from International Data Corporation’s (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker. This decline is the biggest ever in a single quarter. Heavy sales and promotions during the quarter helped reduce existing inventory rather than drive shipment growth. Sellers are becoming increasingly prudent with their shipments and planning, keeping their focus on profitability, said Nabila Popal, research director at IDC. Even Apple which seemed immune faced a blow to its supply chain with the unexpected lockdown of its major factories in China.

source: IDC

Google says it shut down more than 50,000 accounts to counter a campaign called DragonBridge, which promotes the dismemberment of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in 2022, focused on Taiwan, COVID-19 and US politics. While most of the material put out by the disinformation network is “low quality and without any political message”, the amount of material released last year was critical of the governments of Taiwan and the US. China’s response to COVID-19 and how the US handled the pandemic as well as the Russian invasion of Ukraine have been criticized. Google says most of the content is targeted toward Chinese speakers, but some of it is in English and other languages. Since 2019, DragonBridge has closed over 100,000 accounts on YouTube, Blogger and AdSense linked to actors.

source: record

A British man who planned to have a “robot lawyer” help a defendant fight a traffic ticket has abandoned the effort after being threatened with possible prosecution and jail time. Joshua Brower, owner of AI startup DoNotPay, built a platform for people fighting traffic tickets to use arguments in court generated by artificial intelligence. The person challenging the speeding ticket wears smart glasses that both record court proceedings and write a response from a small speaker into the defendant’s ear. The system relied on some of the leading AI text generators including ChatGPT and Da Vinci. Brower said he was threatened with several state bar associations after offering one million dollars to anyone willing to adopt his technique during a court battle.

source: npr

AI-transcribed speech read for the first time in Congress. AP News reported that the brief two-paragraph speech read by the Massachusetts Democrat on the floor of the US House on Wednesday was prepared by the online AI chatbot ChatGPT. The member of Congress said that part of the decision to read the ChatGPT-generated text was to help the debate on AI and the challenges and opportunities it creates. He said he doesn’t want to see a repeat of the advent of social media, which started smaller and faster than Congress’s response. To ensure that the United States maintains a leadership role in AI research and development and responsibly explores the many possibilities of emerging technologies.

source: ap news

This is all the tech news that is trending right now. Hashtag Trending is a part of the ITWC Podcast Network. Add us to your Alexa Flash Briefing or your Google Home Daily Briefing. Be sure to sign up for our Daily IT Wire Newsletter to get important news straight to your inbox every day. Plus, check out the next episode of Hashtag Tendence, our weekly hashtag trending episode in French, which drops every Thursday morning. If you have any suggestion or tip, drop us a line in the comments or via email. Thanks for listening, I’m Aashi Pamma.

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