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Facebook to Unveil Premium TV Efforts Next Month
Facebook is reportedly gearing up to reveal its TV plans soon. According to Business Insider, the social networking giant is developing 24 shows, which are expected to premiere in mid-June. The shows will vary: Some will be long-form content, while others will be more snackable, at around 5 to 10 minutes in length.
JD.com Hits Profit in Q1
JD.com, China’s second-largest ecommerce company, hit profitability for the first time in Q1 2017. The company reported a net income of RMB239 million ($35 million) for the first three months of the year, but warned that it expected to spend heavily on its logistics network over the rest of the year in order to remain competitive. Unlike Alibaba, which operates largely as a marketplace, JD.com has focused on managing (and shipping) its own inventory. According to iResearch Consulting Group, JD.com controlled a 24.7% share of retail ecommerce sales in China in 2016, behind only Alibaba’s Tmall (56.6%).
Spotify, Deezer Take ‘Gatekeeper’ Complaint to EU
CEOs of streaming music services Spotify and Deezer are among the heads of a handful of influential digital firms in Europe that have called on the European Commission (EC) to look into business-to-business practices that turn digital platforms that serve as “gateways” to their own services into “gatekeepers” that hinder companies seen as rivals, according to a letter first obtained by the Financial Times. The letter is being interpreted as an attack on the power of app store titans Apple and Google. The timing of the request comes as the EC begins to update “digital single market” regulations in the EU.
Didi Embraces English
China-based on-demand transportation platform Didi Chuxing has unveiled an English-language interface for its service—at least in three cities in the country. Now users in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou can book rides and communicate with drivers in English. Didi looks to be improving its foreign language skills to aid its expansion into foreign markets, where it will undoubtedly butt heads with US-based ride-hailing company Uber.
Thailand’s Omise Partners with Alipay
Thailand-based financial services startup Omise has partnered with Alipay, the digital payment service from Alibaba affiliate Ant Financial. The agreement allows users of Alipay to complete transactions via Omise’s suite of payment services offered to merchants in Thailand. The agreement follows a wider trend of digital payment services from China like WeChat Pay and Alipay brokering agreements with overseas payment processers to make purchases by Chinese tourists easier.
—Cliff Annicelli, Rahul Chadha and Rimma Kats
eMarketer estimates that US adults will average 12 hours 7 minutes of media usage per day this year, up 3 minutes from 2016. Time spent with mobile will account for nearly all of the increase.
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