Amazon seeks MGM’s licence to thrill

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Another day, one other main media deal, reportedly. The anticipated consolidation within the streaming wars is occurring before anybody anticipated. It’s like a denouement within the first reel, to use outdated film terminology.

Survival will depend on compelling content material corresponding to films, and Amazon’s want to reinforce its personal back-catalogue might be behind its talks to purchase MGM, the movie studio answerable for the James Bond franchise, for about $9bn. MGM is likely one of the few Hollywood studios not to have been devoured up by a bigger conglomerate, with Warner Bros working inside AT&T; Fox underneath Disney; Universal inside Comcast; and Paramount inside ViacomCBS.

MGM has been hit laborious by the coronavirus pandemic closing cinemas. It has postponed the discharge of the blockbuster Bond movie No Time To Die 4 occasions. A deal would considerably bulk up Amazon’s movie and TV operations, says Lex. MGM’s expansive content material library boasts 4,000 films, together with The Terminator and Rocky, and hit TV exhibits corresponding to Fargo and The Handmaid’s Tale.

The merger introduced on Monday of Discovery and Warner Media will bulk up subscribers, though that mixture will nonetheless path Netflix, Amazon Prime and Disney Plus:

Our media staff has a cinematic “tick-tock” on how the deal was accomplished. It begins with a deliberate golf spherical between AT&T chief John Stankey and Discovery CEO David Zaslav, with the small print later hammered out at Zaslav’s Greenwich Village brownstone in April.

“I anticipated . . . there was seemingly to be extra consolidation,” Stankey advised reporters on Monday. “We . . .[wanted to] provoke that fairly than have to comply with it.”

Lex says AT&T is breaking even on the deal, three years after shopping for Time Warner for $110bn. The Discovery/Warner enterprise worth will method $150bn, in contrast to $225bn plus every for Netflix and Disney. Yet the mixed libraries of Discovery and WarnerMedia — which incorporates HBO and Warner Brothers in addition to the Turner cable networks — ought to make the combo aggressive in a battle the place content material is king.

The Internet of (Five) Things

1. How social media is pumping penny shares 
Hundreds of penny shares traded away from the principle US inventory markets have had their very own frenzied, social media-driven hypothesis this yr, in accordance to an FT investigation, usually inspired by Twitter accounts with cultish followings.

Column chart of Shares traded (tn) showing Trading volume of over-the-counter penny stocks

2. Nvidia limits crypto mining
Chipmaker Nvidia mentioned in the present day it was intentionally limiting the capabilities of its hottest video gaming playing cards to make them much less helpful for crypto mining. The transfer was designed to ease an acute scarcity going through video avid gamers and highlights the booming demand from cryptocurrency lovers as costs spiked this yr. They are falling proper now, with some buyers angered on the actions of Elon Musk, reviews Alphaville.

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3. Vodafone steps up post-pandemic spending
Vodafone reported it had elevated its capital expenditure by €500m over the previous yr and had plans to speed up spending additional. The cell operator, which can also be Europe’s largest broadband supplier, mentioned the elevated spending could be on community funding, new towers and development alternatives in digital companies.

4. DoorDash to ship in Europe
Food supply app DoorDash is getting ready to launch in Germany, in what would be the US market chief’s first foray into the crowded area of European supply apps. The firm shared 15 job postings on Monday looking for to fill administration, technique and recruitment positions in Berlin. It just isn’t but clear when it plans to launch. In April, Uber advised us it could deliver its Uber Eats meals service to Germany in a “few weeks”, starting in Berlin.

5. Thomas and the mod controllers
The most horrifying factor in Capcom’s new horror recreation Resident Evil Village is a modded Thomas the Tank Engine, writes Tom Faber. Thomas is particular to modders finishing up the gaming type of a remix — a fan-made alteration that may vary from small graphical tweaks to large overhauls in gameplay.

Tech instruments — Google Derm Assist

Google is taking one of the vital vital steps but by an enormous tech firm into healthcare, launching an AI-powered instrument that may help shoppers in self-diagnosing a whole lot of pores and skin situations, reviews Madhumita Murgia.

Derm Assist is the primary of its sort and can launch in Europe this yr earlier than being aimed on the practically 2bn folks globally affected by pores and skin situations starting from pimples to melanoma.

Users add photos of their medical situation through the Derm Assist web site and reply questions on their signs. An AI mannequin then analyses the data and generates an inventory of doable matching situations. The service might be free to all web customers, whether or not they’re Google customers or not. Read extra

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