Newley's Notes

Newley’s Notes 142: Apple Soars; Google in China; QAnon; Wingsuit Craziness

Edition 142 of my email newsletter went out on Monday.

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Hi, friends. Welcome to the latest edition of Newley’s Notes.

Here are ten items worth your time this week:

🍎 1) Apple sees strong quarter ahead as earnings top estimates [Axios] — The micro: iPhone revenue rose 20% compared to a year earlier and services sales rose 31%. The macro, from my colleague Tripp Mickle: The results show how Apple is “finding ways to grow amid a contracting global smartphone market that is roiling its rivals,” he writes. And:

The company’s services business reported record revenue of $9.55 billion, a 31% increase from a year earlier, strengthening the case that Apple is in the midst of a transformation from a device-driven business into one increasingly reliant on sales of subscriptions and software.

💯💯💯💯💯 2) … and Apple later marked a milestone: Apple’s Market Cap Hits $1 Trillion [WSJ] — It’s the first U.S. firm to surpass $1 trillion in market cap. Click through for an amazing graphic showing the stock’s rise.

🔍 3) This week also saw two interesting Google-China stories. First: Google Plans to Launch Censored Search Engine in China, Leaked Documents Reveal [The Intercept] — The service “will blacklist websites and search terms about human rights, democracy, religion, and peaceful protest,” Ryan Gallagher reports.

🇨🇳 4) And second: Google Developing News App for China [The Information] — The news app “will comply with the country’s strict censorship laws,” Wayne Ma and Juro Osawa report.

⁉️ 5) Bizarre story of the week: What Is QAnon: Explaining the Internet Conspiracy Theory That Showed Up at a Trump Rally [NY Times] — TLDR: It’s super weird and totally nonsensical. There’s more from Know Your Meme.

📚 6) Meet the YouTube Stars Turning Viewers Into Readers [New York Times] — Concepción de León speaks with “BookTubers,” young book fans who have become influencers on YouTube.

🥤 7) The Decline and Fall of Diet Coke and the Power Generation That Loved It [New Yorker] — “To an astonishing extent,” Nathan Heller writes, “the age of Diet Coke — its rise, its reign, its fall — maps onto a historical bracket that began with the launch of MTV and ended with the emergence of social media: the era of the power of the image in a mainstream burnished form.”

💥 8) Venezuela President Maduro survives ‘drone assassination attempt’ [BBC] — Nicolás Maduro was speaking at a gathering in Caracas when “Two drones loaded with explosives went off near the president’s stand, Communications Minister Jorge Rodriguez said,” the BBC reports. Meanwhile, Reuters’s Joseph Ax has some analysis:

Wherever the investigation leads, Maduro’s allegations raised the specter of unmanned aerial vehicles being used by militant groups or others to launch bombing, chemical or biological attacks, a tactic that has long worried security experts.

💔 9) Tech longread of the week: Growing Up Jobs [Vanity Fair] — Lisa Brennan-Jobs recounts her difficult relationship with her father, Apple co-founder Steve Jobs.

🌌 10) Mind-blowing video of the week: Stars orbiting the black hole at the heart of the Milky Way [YouTube] — “This time-lapse video from the NACO instrument on ESO’s Very Large Telescope in Chile shows stars orbiting the supermassive black hole that lies at the heart of the Milky Way over a period of nearly 20 years.”

⛰️ Honorable mention: Formation Wingsuit Terrain Flying at the Mettlehorn in Switzerland [YouTube] — Title says it all. Insane.

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👊 Fist bump from New Delhi


By Newley

Hi. I'm Newley Purnell. I cover technology and business for The Wall Street Journal. I use this site to share my stories and often blog about the books I'm reading, tech trends, sports, travel, and our dog Ginger. For updates, get my weekly email newsletter.

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