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Re/wind: Windows 10, India Dealmaking, Google+’s Demise and More

It was an eventful week in tech news, beyond the usual quarterly-earnings hubbub. Uber, Stripe and other big-name startups inked major deals, and Google began winding down its one-time would-be Facebook killer. Here are the details:

Uber raised another $1 billion (giving it $5 billion total) round …

Microsoft Windows

HitchBOT Gets Mugged in ‘City of Brotherly Love’ En Route to San Francisco

Sometimes bad things happen to good robots.

A child-sized robot called HitchBOT saw its hitchhiking journey across the United States come to an abrupt end in the city of Philadelphia, just two weeks into its travels. The robot, with its endearing LED smiley face, rotund bucket-shaped body and blue …

San Francisco Bay Area

Capital Gains: Uber and Alibaba Make Their Big India Moves, Visa Backs Stripe and More

BuzzFeed and Vox Media both raised money from NBCUniversal, Uber surged past the $51 billion mark, and more startups raised big dollars. Here’s what happened:

In May, Re/code reported that Stripe was getting an investment that would set its value at $5 billion, but we didn’t know who it was coming …

Startups

Re/code Staffers Hit the Airwaves to Discuss Twitter Earnings, Apple TV and Microsoft’s Windows 10

Re/code staffers hit the airwaves to discuss Twitter’s earnings, Microsoft’s new Windows 10 operating system, and reports that Apple will at long last update its Apple TV set-top box.

Social media writer Kurt Wagner gave a preview of Twitter’s earnings on WBUR’s “Here and Now” program.

Re/code

Microsoft Windows

India’s Snapdeal, an Amazon Competitor, Raises $500 Million From Alibaba, Foxconn and SoftBank

Alibaba finally has its ally in India, perhaps the world’s hottest e-commerce market.

The Chinese e-commerce giant has invested in Snapdeal, an India-based e-commerce startup, as part of a $500 million round, according to multiple sources. Foxconn, the Taiwanese company best known as a manufacturer …

Amazon

Jessica Alba’s Honest Company Gets Behind Girls Who Code, Hosts Summer Program

Actress and entrepreneur Jessica Alba has built a $1 billion consumer brand on a simple premise — to make products that are good for the people who use them, and good for the environment.

A similar create-a-better-world philosophy informed The Honest Company’s decision to support Girls Who Code, a …

Jessica Alba

Understanding Apple’s Car Strategy

A version of this essay was originally published at Tech.pinions, a website dedicated to informed opinions, insight and perspective on the tech industry. (Insider Exclusives registration required for this one.)

Not long after the original iPhone came out, I had a friend who was close to a major …

Steve Jobs

Hot or Not? Apple Surveys Apple Watch Owners About Their New Device.

Has the Apple Watch earned a permanent place on your wrist? Does the gentle touch of the taptic engine delight you?

These are among the questions Apple poses to Apple Watch owners in a survey, soliciting their opinions on matters both concrete (on which wrist do you typically wear the watch?) and …

Apple Watch

Trevor O’Brien, the Product Lead Running All Twitter Apps, Is Departing

Another key product exec is leaving Twitter.

Trevor O’Brien, who joined Twitter a year and a half ago from YouTube and oversees product for Twitter’s iOS and Android apps, is departing the company, according to multiple sources. O’Brien also oversaw Twitter’s timeline product at one point, and …

Uber Closes $1 Billion Funding at $51 Billion Valuation While Pledging to Invest in India

Uber has finally closed its latest funding round, raising almost $1 billion at a $51 billion valuation, according to sources. The Wall Street Journal earlier reported the investment.

The ride-hailing company says it authorized the funding more than two months ago, according to a spokeswoman. “We …

India

Christine, Then and Now (Comic)

Comics

Group Accusing YouTube of Helping Hackers Has Ties to Film Lobby

The group behind a study blaming Google’s YouTube for helping Peeping Tom hackers failed to mention its connections to the film industry lobby, one of Google’s biggest antagonists.

The 45-page study, released Thursday by a nonprofit outfit called the Digital Citizens Alliance, points out how easy it …

YouTube

Zuckerbergs Expecting a New Future Facebook Mobile User

In a blog post today, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg said he was expecting a baby girl with his wife Priscilla. Personal news is not really our forte, but since I did baby announcements for Jerry Yang and Marc Andreessen, I can hardly stop now. In his post, Zuckerberg talked about the …

Facebook

Why I’m Keeping an Eye on the New iPod

A version of this essay was originally published at Tech.pinions, a website dedicated to informed opinions, insight and perspective on the tech industry. (Insider Exclusives registration required for this one.)

When Apple introduced the iPod, it pretty much changed my mobile music life. Before, I …

Apple Music

LinkedIn Starts Building a Syndicated Content Network

LinkedIn has gotten a lot of mileage out of the free content that famous people like Richard Branson write for the social network. Now it wants to get more: The company wants to syndicate that content for publication on other sites.

LinkedIn is emailing the 500 people it calls its “Influencers” and …

LinkedIn

Universal Music Group Chairman Lucian Grainge Renews Contract

Universal Music Group Chairman and Chief Executive Lucian Grainge has renewed his contract as head of the world’s largest label through 2020. The veteran music executive, who moved the label’s headquarters to California to be at the epicenter of technology and entertainment, has been a supporter of …

Universal Music Group

Google Glass Tries to Mount a Comeback

Read Now

Google seemed as though it had killed off Google Glass, its failed attempt to make wearable computers for the masses. But now it is working on a version specifically designed for enterprise and industrial use, which makes much more sense.
[Eric Johnson and Mark Bergen | Re/code]

Old media, …

Google

Snapchat Revenues Could Hit $50 Million This Year — But It Still Needs a CFO

Snapchat is finally making some real money, with a lot more coming in 2016. It’s also looking for someone to manage all that cash.

Snapchat is targeting around $50 million in revenue this year, according to multiple sources familiar with the company — a nice chunk of change considering it launched …

Snapchat

In the Shadow of Second Life, Virtual Reality Startups Say This Time It’ll Work. Really.

Ebbe Altberg needs about a paragraph to define human life:

“What humans do is create spaces,” the gregarious 51-year-old executive says, leaning back at a table in a small room on the second floor of Linden Lab’s headquarters in San Francisco. “Some spaces are mobile, like a bus. San Francisco is a …

Second Life

Dear Health Care, the Internet Is Here to Stay

While most other industries have enjoyed a decades-long marriage with the Internet, in health care, we’re still in the “getting to know you” phase, working to establish a level of trust. Understandably, there are major concerns in our industry surrounding data integrity, both in and outside of the …

Health Care

A Fragile Moment for Big Media

We’re living in an age where the underdog wins. Startups — and individuals with the mentality of startups — have the agility to shift massive industries. One need only look to Uber as an example of this. Now we’re seeing the same principle apply to the media industry, where small players are …

Startups

Facebook’s New Plane — By the Numbers

Facebook showed off details of its new Aquila plane on Thursday, an unmanned aircraft that will use lasers to help connect people to the Internet — it’s real, not science fiction. The plane is one of many Facebook plans to build, and it’s not the kind of drone mockup you’ve seen from companies like …

Facebook

Toyota Inks Deal for Telenav In-Car Navigation, Drives Away From Google and Apple

Earlier this year, Toyota spelledout what many car companies were thinking: It would rather have its own software inside its cars than software from Apple and Google. On Thursday, it took another step to box out the mobile giants.

The Japanese carmaker signed a deal with two auto tech companies, …

Google

Google Glass Isn’t Dead — But It’s All About the Enterprise for Now

A new Google Glass is coming, possibly by the end of this year — but it will look pretty familiar.

Re/code has learned that a version of the second edition of Google’s wearable, which was erroneously assumed dead when the search giant obfuscated about its future earlier this year, has already been …

Google

Facebook Built an Actual Plane to Bring the World Internet Access

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s… Facebook?

The tech behemoth has built an actual plane — a 140-foot, solar-powered, unmanned Aquila — to serve as flying Internet hub that will provide Wi-Fi access to parts of the world where connectivity is lacking.

The plane isn’t just an idea or a mockup. An actual …

Facebook

Found! A Music Label That Will Actually Tell Us How Apple Music Is Doing!

No one knows how Apple Music is really doing, because Apple Music doesn’t have any paying subscribers yet.

Everyone who is using the service right now is part of a three-month free trial, which won’t expire until October at the earliest.

But the music labels that have licensed their stuff to Apple can

Apple Music

Peak Food-Delivery Bubble? Groupon Gets Into the Act.

We are a hungry people. And damn it, we just cannot for the life of us have enough options for getting food from a restaurant into our salivating mouths.

Luckily, the heavens produced GrubHub and Seamless and Delivery.com. And then DoorDash and Postmates and Caviar. Oh, and Uber with its new …

Groupon

After Homejoy Hires, Google Plods Into Home Services Market With New Test Ads

Locked in or plugged up? Google can help.

The search giant is testing out a new paid search listings for professional services, starting with plumbers and locksmiths in San Francisco. Earlier, if you queried for one of them, Google’s page produced a trio of sponsored links followed by organic …

Google

NBCUniversal Poised to Make Big Investments in BuzzFeed and Vox Media

NBCUniversal is close to a deal to invest $250 million in BuzzFeed, in a transaction that will value the booming digital publisher at around $1.5 billion.

Sources say Comcast’s TV and film unit has a “handshake” agreement with BuzzFeed, which raised $50 million last year at a $850 million valuation. …

NBCUniversal

Facebook Rolls, Wall Street Yawns

Read Now

Facebook delivered another quarter that beat Wall Street's expectations, but investors yawned a bit, and shares dropped about 1.3 percent -- supposedly because Facebook's expenses shot up. But it might just be because Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg played their future plans for …

Facebook