Google is still paying Apple billions to be the default search engine in Safari

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

UK regulators are scrutinizing a longstanding deal between Apple and Google over the default search engine in the iPhone maker’s mobile Safari browser, reports Reuters.

According to an updated report compiled by the UK government’s Competition and Markets Authority, Google pays Apple a “substantial majority” of the £1.2 billion (roughly $1.5 billion) it pays every year in the UK alone for so-called default positions, in other words when Google pays a company to make its search engine the go-to one in a browser or other platform.

The report says the deal creates a “significant barrier to entry and expansion” for Google competitors. The report also suggests either limiting Apple’s ability to monetize such deals or to give users a choice…

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Author: Nick Statt

Microsoft announces new Windows 10 Start menu design and updated Alt-Tab

Microsoft is introducing a new Windows 10 Start menu design that will de-emphasize its Live Tiles. The software giant first hinted at the refreshed design earlier this year, and it’s arriving for Windows 10 testers today. “We are freshening up the Start menu with a more streamlined design that removes the solid color backplates behind the logos in the apps list and applies a uniform, partially transparent background to the tiles,” explains Microsoft in a blog post.

Essentially, the reduction in the color of the blocky tiled interface on the Start menu will simplify it slightly and make it easier to scan for the apps you use on a daily basis. It’s a subtle change, but it certainly makes the Start menu look a little less chaotic and avoids…

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Author: Tom Warren

There are more streaming choices than ever — why are prices going up?

Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge

YouTube TV announced yesterday that it’d be raising its prices by 30 percent to $65 per month. FuboTV followed shortly after, announcing increases of its own that put the lowest tier of the service at $60. The first era of internet-streamed TV — the one of cheap, innovative cable alternatives — is over, and what comes next is going to look a whole lot more like the traditional cable services it promised to replace… with prices to match.

Over-the-top internet TV services were supposed to save us from the limited bundles and expensive prices of traditional cable. Big internet companies like Google, PlayStation, and Hulu swooped in to rescue consumers from the archaic TV services of Comcast and AT&T, with better apps and rock-bottom pricing…

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Author: Chaim Gartenberg

Sling TV promises not to raise prices on customers like everyone else is doing

Sling TV stock 2040Photo by Chris Welch / The Verge

One day after YouTube TV announced a $15 price hike that had customers crying out “enough already,” Dish’s Sling TV service is promising that it won’t raise prices on existing customers until at least August 2021. The company seems keen on using the frustration toward YouTube to help boost its own subscriptions; this offer is extended to anyone who signs up for Sling by August 1st and maintains service. (That, of course, leaves open the possibility that new customers who come on board after August 1st will start off with higher pricing…)

Right now, Sling’s two channel tiers, Sling Blue and Sling Orange, each cost $30. You can get them individually if only one covers the channels you want, or get both for $45 monthly for maximum…

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Author: Chris Welch