TikTok is gearing up to enter the e-commerce space, Amazon will finally be launching two satellites for its internet constellation, and Meta launches the new Quest Pro VR headset.
That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now, welcome to Hashtag Trending. It’s Friday, October 14, and I’m your host, Samira Balsara.
TikTok is now chasing after the e-commerce market. According to Axios, the company is looking to build its own product fulfillment centres. The tipoff was from one of its job postings, in which it described a product fulfillment system, complete with warehousing, delivery, and customer service returns, that will sustain the growth of the TikTok Shop. One job opening called for a logistics solutions manager for a global fulfillment centre, and another is seeking a creation of a new fulfillment service centre from scratch. The social media platform first piloted a shopping feature in North America and the U.K. last year. A company spokesperson confirmed that it has already begun offering e-commerce programs in the U.K. and Southeast Asia.
Amazon is finally gearing up to launch the first two satellites for its Project Kuiper constellation. Project Kuiper aims to provide satellite internet across the globe, much like SpaceX’s Starlink. The two satellites, Kuipersat 1 and 2, will launch on the maiden flight of the United Launch Alliance’s Vulcan Centaur rocket, a joint project by Lockheed Martin and Boeing. This launch is critical not just for Amazon, but for Vulcan as well. The rocket is years behind schedule due to delays in development. Also, it needs to complete two commercial orbital missions if it wants to be certified to launch U.S. military satellites. According to Space News, launching Amazon’s satellites will provide practical experience for future missions.
Meta has launched a new VR headset at its Connect conference. The Quest Pro will cost $1,500 and aims to improve the VR experience for both users and developers. It uses a new Qualcomm Snapdragon chip for faster processing, and new touch controllers that provide better hand tracking. The lens in the display has been upgraded as well. Joining the launch event was Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, who unveiled a partnership with Meta to integrate some Microsoft apps in Quest VR devices, including Microsoft Team’s chat app.
A new wind turbine prototype has generated a record-breaking 359MWh of energy within 24 hours. The turbine, produced by Siemens Gamesa, uses a 222-meter wide rotor to generate enough electricity to power 18,000 houses annually. The company says that once it’s ready for prime time, it can be easily manufactured in high volumes at a low risk. Serial production for this wind turbine will begin in 2024.
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