June 23, 2024

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Lots has happened this past week in the tech world! With WhatsApp announcing new AI tools, a potential new Apple app coming soon, new updates on SpaceX’s Starship, and more, there’s much to catch up on. So, let’s get started! 

WhatsApp Announces New AI Tools

Meta has launched its first AI-driven ad targeting program for businesses on WhatsApp, aiming to generate revenue from the popular chat service, the company announced on Thursday at a conference in Brazil. CEO Mark Zuckerberg introduced the new tools in a video presented during the event. 

This marks a significant shift for WhatsApp, an encrypted messaging service known for its strong privacy credentials, which has previously avoided the targeted advertising strategies used in Meta’s other tech apps, such as Facebook and Instagram. For several years, Meta has been integrating commerce and payment features into WhatsApp, including “business messaging” tools that allow companies to conduct customer service chats and send marketing materials to users who have shared their phone numbers.

Potential New Apple App Coming Soon

Apple plans to introduce a new app called Passwords to help users manage their login information, according to a report from Bloomberg. The company is expected to unveil the app at its Worldwide Developers Conference next week.

Currently, Apple allows users to save passwords across iPhone, iPad, and Vision Pro using iCloud Keychain. The new Passwords app will offer similar syncing capabilities but will organize logins into different categories, such as accounts, Wi-Fi networks, and passkeys. Additionally, Bloomberg reports that the Passwords app will extend support to Windows, though there’s no information about support for Android.

New Updates on SpaceX’s Starship

SpaceX’s Starship rocket successfully endured a fiery, hypersonic reentry from space and achieved a milestone landing demonstration in the Indian Ocean on June 6, completing a full test mission around the globe on its fourth attempt. 

Just 65 minutes after launching from Texas, Starship’s controlled descent into the Indian Ocean marked the latest tech advancement in the company’s test-to-failure rocket development program. This multibillion-dollar initiative, led by Elon Musk’s space company, aims to create a reusable satellite launcher and moon lander.

NOYB Issues Complaints About Meta 

Meta’s plan to use personal data to train its artificial intelligence (AI) models without seeking consent faced criticism from advocacy group NOYB this week, which called on privacy enforcers across Europe to intervene. NOYB (None of Your Business) urged national privacy watchdogs to take immediate action, highlighting that recent changes to Meta’s privacy policy, effective June 26, would permit the company to use years of personal posts, private images, and online tracking data for its AI tech.

US Treasury Pursues Public Opinion on AI

The U.S. Treasury Department announced that it is seeking public comments on the use of artificial intelligence in the financial services sector. The agency aims to enhance its understanding of the opportunities and risks associated with the development and application of AI in this field. Regulators have warned that the rapid adoption of AI could pose new risks to the U.S. financial system if not properly monitored.

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