Hello and welcome back to Trending, Business Insider's weekly look at the world of tech. I'm Alexei Oreskovic, Business Insider's West Coast Bureau Chief and Global Tech Editor. If you want to get Trending in your email inbox every Wednesday, just click here.
This week: Tim Cook takes Apple to a new frontier
Apple's leadership team reported for greenscreen duty on Monday as the iPhone-maker put on the first-ever virtual edition of its developers' conference. Tim Cook, Craig Federighi, and the rest of the gang were all there, doing their best impersonations of a QVC host, hamming it up for the camera and hard-selling all the latest features and innovations cooked up in Cupertino. Depending on who you ask, the virtual format was either an awkward infomercial or a much more efficient format that should become the norm. The event's headline news was the defenestration of Intel, with Apple confirming that it was ripping Intel's microprocessors out of its Mac motherboards in coming years and replacing them with its own, home-grown silicon.
The "news" wasn't really much of a surprise — Intel's stock even closed slightly higher by day's end, despite the big customer loss. Of course, there were product announcements aplenty, from masked memojis to Apple Watch's handwashing helper, which you can read all about here.
Apple also continued to beat the privacy drum, announcing new "food nutrition" labels for apps that will show you all the personal data an app is tracking about you.
But a big storyline took place off screen... Privacy is increasingly important to Apple as it competes with Google for users and developers. But what Apple probably didn't expect as it was planning its WWDC announcements was that its nemesis, Google, would get a boost of goodwill without doing anything. That's because Apple's App Store was hit with a wave of negative news right before WWDC, including a pair of investigations by the EU and a high-profile spat with the developer of a buzzy new email app called Hey. Apple's threats of blocking Hey from the App Store made it look like the bad guy compared to Google and its hands-off treatment of app developers. Tim Cook didn't mention it during the WWDC broadcast, but on the same day Apple was putting on its big show, Apple separately announced big changes that ease up on its strict App Store rules. The move appeased developers and Apple ultimately emerged without suffering too much damage. But with Apple trying to differentiate itself from Google based on its privacy policies, the episode was an unwelcome and unplanned script change on its big day — and it may not be the last time.
The Sundar Squad
Earlier this month, Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai made some changes to the senior leadership team at Google. The management reorg comes as Google is navigating a pandemic that some analysts think could cause the company's revenue to shrink for the first time, as well as growing regulatory scrutiny and employee unrest. In other words, Pichai's team of direct reports have their work cut out for them. Check out Hugh Langley's profiles on the 15 execs that report directly to Pichai: Meet the 15 Google execs who report to CEO Sundar Pichai and are leading the internet company's most critical businesses
Sound bite of the week: "We've been quiet for far too long as these platforms have amplified polarization within our society, and we've bankrolled it." — Dashlane CMO Joy Howard tells Business Insider's Rob Price why the company joined the advertiser boycott of Facebook, alongside Patagonia, Talkspace, REI and others.
Pic o' the week: Elon Musk's secret farm in Wisconsin There's more to see in Wisconsin than cows and corn. As one sharp-eyed cheesehead noticed recently, Elon Musk appears to have planted a crop of futuristic space-based internet receivers in Wisconsin's fertile soil. The mysterious, bulbous devices — tucked among rows of grain corns in Merrillan, Wisconsin and discovered by a telephoto-toting Reddit user by the name of darkpenguin22 — appear to be the clearest images yet of ground antennas for the Starlink satellites.
Starlink, of course, is the fleet of internet-beaming satellites being shot into orbit by Musk's SpaceX company. Dave Mosher's got the full story here.
Recommended Readings: Former Pinterest employees describe a traumatic workplace where managers humiliate employees until they cry, Black people feel alienated, and the toxic culture 'eats away at your soul' C3.ai CEO Tom Siebel says that his hot AI startup did $160 million in revenue last year, but won't go public until the economy is fully recovered This startup lets techies fleeing Silicon Valley work on remote engineering projects for big companies, and it's already being used by Nestle, TaskRabbit and NASA Legendary venture capitalist Marc Andreessen schedules every part of his day, including when he sleeps, to avoid becoming a burned-out micromanager The executive producer leading news at Snapchat has left the company
Not necessarily in tech: A 'frat party' workplace, a tweet that led to the CEO's resignation, and a culture that demeans women: Insiders say this is the reality of working for the cult-following gym CrossFit
Et voila, that's all for this week. Thanks for reading, and remember, if you like this newsletter, tell your friends and colleagues they can sign up here to receive it. — AlexeiJoin the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Here's what it's like to travel during the coronavirus outbreak
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