This week, Prop F was struck down, Facebook reported continued growth and Twitter traded in stars for hearts. TC Cribs visited the Love Nest, a Palo Alto co-living space that’s part commune and part startup incubator. On Bullish, we talked with Joyce Kim of Stellar about the impact of non-profits inside the tech world. These are the tech stories to catch you up on this week’s major news.
1. Proposition F, also known as the Airbnb initiative that the company spent north of $8 million to defeat, was struck down. The San Francisco ballet measure would have put harsher restrictions on short-term rentals, the core of Airbnb’s business. Kim-Mai Cutler wrote that both the current system and Proposition F are flawed in different ways.
2. Leslie Miley, the only black engineer in a leadership position at Twitter, publicly announced that he left the company. In a post, he said his reason for leaving was the way Twitter addresses diversity. It wasn’t until days later that Twitter SVP of Engineering Alex Roetter responded to the situation, chalking it up to “poor communication.” Megan Rose Dickey wrote about what’s next for diversity at Twitter.
3. Facebook reported Q3 earnings. Growth continued as Facebook hit 1.55 billion users and the company beat the street’s estimates in its Q3 2015 earnings with $4.5 billion in revenue. Josh Constine reported Facebook’s monthly user count was up sharply to 4.02% quarter over quarter from Q2’s 3.47% growth. That shows that while it might have hit sign-up saturation in its core markets, it’s still adding plenty of users in the developing world. that Facebook video viewing is also growing in leaps and bounds. The social network hit 8 billion daily video views, doubling from 4 billion in April.
4. Jet took another step in its mission to go head-to-head with Amazon. The e-commerce company is reportedly raising $500 million on a $1 billion pre-money valuation.
5. The Apple TV, complete with a brand new remote and its own app ecosystem, became available in Apple Stores as well as retail stores like Best Buy and Target. Review coming soon.
6. Gaming mothership Activision Blizzard acquiredCandy Crush maker King Digital Entertainment for $5.9 billion.
7. Expedia acquired Airbnb competitor HomeAway for $3.9 billion in cash and Expedia common stock. HomeAway raised a total of almost $505 million in five funding rounds before it went public in 2011.
8. Twitter gave up stars and favorites for hearts and likes. While it may seem like a trivial icon swap, there’s more to it. Josh Constine wrote that hearts could be a way for Twitter to encourage a higher rate of feedback per tweet so users feel more heard. Jordan Crook reminded us that Twitter is in trouble; growth is at a crawl, and this new symbolism may make Twitter marginally more accessible to a new user.
10. Following reports that Google was planning to fold Chrome OS into Android, Google published a story on pretty much every blog it owns denying that this will happen. “While we’ve been working on ways to bring together the best of both operating systems, there’s no plan to phase out Chrome OS,” wrote Google’s senior VP for Android, Chrome OS and Chromecast. At the end of the day, Google would rather monetize the web than Android apps anyway.
11. AppDynamics, a “unicorn” company that makes software to monitor the performance of business applications, raised a fresh $83.4 million in funding as part of a round that’s targeting up to $150 million more.
12. Steve O’Hear went hands-on with the Blackberry Priv, Blackberry’s first Android phone. He wrote that there are improvements, but if you want a premium Android phone, there are better options available.
13. In the spirit of the November elections, we gave you “If The 2016 Candidates Were Tech Companies.” You’re welcome.