Though earnings season is just about over, there has still been some hot news in tech. This week, investors turned to Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), as the tech giant sent out media invites to what is anticipated to be its most important product event in years. And Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) grabbed big headlines twice: once when it announced an aggressive move to help curb fake news, and again when its Instagram suffered a major hack.
Apple schedules its big event
Tech giant Apple sent out media invitations to its annual iPhone launch event, scheduled for Sept. 12. Though there's no way to guarantee Apple will launch its latest iPhone at the event, a new smartphone from the tech company is basically in the bag, since Apple launches a new iPhone in September every year.
Investors are anticipating Apple's Sept. 12 announcement to feature a totally overhauled iPhone, marking the first time in three years that Apple has launched a new form factor for the important device. Taking place 10 years after the first iPhone launch, the ever-active Apple rumor mill expects the company to deliver the biggest update to the iPhone in years. Among other new features, the so-called "iPhone 8" is expected to have a touch display that nearly covers the entire front of the device, as well as 3D facial scanning technology.
Representing 63% of Apple's trailing-12-month revenue, Apple's new iPhone could prove to be a significant catalyst for the company if it's a hit with customers.
In addition to a new iPhone, there's speculation that Apple will release an updated Apple TV and Apple watch.
The important event is scheduled to take place at Apple's new Steve Jobs Theater at the company's new headquarters -- the first-ever event hosted at the new venue.
Facebook cracks down on Fake news
On Monday, Facebook continued its attack on fake news. Beyond its previous move to hire third-party fact-checking organizations to flag advertisers linking to false stories, Facebook is taking its efforts further. now disallowing Pages that repeatedly share false stories to advertise on the platform," Facebook said in a blog post.
Facebook used the blog post as an opportunity to share its overall approach for reducing fake news on its platform. The social network wants to:
- Eliminate any monetary incentives driven by fake news.
- Build products to "curb the spread of false news."
- Help users "make more informed decisions when they encounter false news."
Instagram gets hacked
A bug discovered on Facebook's photo- and video-sharing platform, Instagram, helped hackers gain access to some users' phone numbers and email addresses, Instagram disclosed in a statement on Friday. Though Instagram said it "quickly fixed the bug," some serious damage was done.
Hackers say they have information on file for 6 million users, The Verge reported. In addition, hackers initially launched a database where it sold some users' contact information for $10 per search on the database. This list of 1,000 accounts in its database included 50 of some of Instagram's most popular users. But the database has been taken down.
While Instagram said only a "small percentage" of accounts were accessed, a small percentage of Instagram's 700 million monthly active users is obviously no small sum.
Beyond just fixing the bug, Instagram said it is also working with law enforcement to fight back against the hackers.