1. Twitter To Launch Subscription Service Super Follows, Aims To Double Revenue By 2023 (Business World)

Twitter Inc. plans to introduce a subscription service for content creators and said it would explore tipping, as it looks to double its annual revenue and accelerate user growth over the next few years. Twitter on Thursday said the subscription initiative, called Super Follows, will give people an opportunity to receive payments for their content. Twitter expects it to appeal to so-called influencers with large internet followings and plans to launch it this year.

2. Salesforce Revenue Up 20% From Last Year, Forecast Calls For Similar Growth Rate (CNBC)

Salesforce.com Inc. reported a 20% increase in sales in the fiscal fourth quarter, the same year-over-year gains as in the previous period, disappointing investors who were looking for growth to accelerate. Shares dropped about 4% in extended trading. Still, the company gave a rev
enue forecast for the current period that exceeded analysts’ estimates, suggesting customers have begun spending more on its software after slowdowns fueled by the pandemic. Sales were $5.82 billion in the period ended January 31, 2021.

3. Facebook Fight Over Media Payments Shifts Focus To Europe (WSJ)

Australia’s fight with Facebook Inc. over media content is focusing attention on European efforts to force tech giants to pay more for news in Europe, as European politicians urge national governments to quickly enact new legislation that would strengthen the hand of news organizations in their battle with the internet behemoths.

4. Google Debuts Sleep API For Android (9to5 Google)

Google is now introducing a new API in Android that will allow apps to better recognize when the user is sleeping, along with its related data. The API, called Sleep API, will take inputs from the device’s light and motion sensors. To collect all this data Android will need permission from the user, namely the Physical Activity Recognition runtime permission. Once granted, apps will be able to utilize this information for their functionalities.

5. TikTok Agreed To Pay $92 Million To Settle Privacy Lawsuit (AdAge)

TikTok agreed to pay $92 million to settle private lawsuits claiming the app illegally recorded facial-scan images of users and disclosed private data to third parties. The US District Judge John Z. Lee in Chicago must approve the deal announced Thursday and told lawyers in September that it will be rejected if it does not represent everyone’s interests.

6. Newsela Announces $100M Series D Financing (TechCrunch)

Leading K-12 instructional content platform Newsela announced today a $100M Series D investment led by new investor Franklin Templeton and existing investor TCV, with participation by Owl Ventures, Tao Capital Partners, Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, and Waycross Ventures. Private US EdTech companies raised a record-setting $2.2B in 2020 across K-12, higher ed, and workforce education. That is a 30% increase over 2019, and more than double the 14% YoY increase enjoyed by all venture-backed US companies.

7. AT&T Spinning Off DirecTV After Losing Millions Of Customers, Subscribers Can Expect ‘Few To No Changes’ (USA Today)

AT&T is spinning off its DirecTV into a new company for a fraction of the $48.5 billion it paid for the satellite TV service in 2015. DirecTV has lost millions of customers on AT&T’s watch and is valued in the deal at just $16.25 billion, including debt. Private equity firm TPG will own 30% of the business, while AT&T holds the rest.