Microsoft becomes $3 trillion company, Apple Mac turns 40

Microsoft became the second-ever company to exceed a $3 trillion (£2.4 trillion) valuation on Wednesday, after its focus on artificial intelligence (AI) drove an investor rally. The valuation follows Apple hitting the milestone in June last year. Microsoft’s shares rose by more than 1.45pc during trading on Wednesday in New York, on a day when America’s benchmark S&P 500 index also hit a record high. Microsoft, known as one of the “magnificent seven” technology companies that have fueled the growth in US stock indexes over the past year, has concentrated heavily on adding artificial intelligence features to its services. Telegraph 

Britons must “strengthen their defences” against the growing threat posed by ransomware developed or enhanced using artificial intelligence (AI), the head of the UK’s cyber security agency has warned.It comes as a new report from the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has found that AI is lowering the barrier of entry to novice cyber criminals. The NCSC – which is a part of GCHQ – has also warned that bad actors are using AI to better find and target victims and that the technology will almost certainly increase the volume and impact of cyber attacks in the near term. Sky News 

Netflix sign-ups boomed at the end of last year as customers prodded by the firm’s crackdown on password-sharing created their own accounts. The streaming giant added more than 13.1 million subscriptions in the three months ended in December. That was the most for any quarter since 2020, extending a streak of growth that started last year. Netflix said it was confident in its growth path and was planning to raise prices. “We largely put price increases on hold as we rolled out paid sharing. Now that we’re through that, we’re able to resume our standard approach,” co-chief executive Greg Peters said. BBC 

Twenty years ago, on the Mac’s 20th anniversary, I asked Steve Jobs
if the Mac would still be relevant to Apple in the age of the iPod. He scoffed at the prospect of the Mac not being important: “of course” it would be. When I interviewed Apple exec Phil Schiller for the Mac’s 30th anniversary, I found myself asking him about the Mac’s relevance, too. He also scoffed: “Our view is, the Mac keeps going forever,” he said. Today marks 40 years since Jobs unveiled the original Macintosh at an event in Cupertino, and it once again feels right to ask what’s next for the Mac?  The Verge 

Mark Zuckerberg’s Meta has not done enough to safeguard children after Molly Russell’s death, according to a whistleblower who said the social media company already has the infrastructure in place to shield teenagers from harmful content. Arturo Béjar, a former senior engineer and consultant at the Instagram and Facebook owner, said if the company had learned its lessons from Molly’s death and subsequent inquest it would have created a safer experience for young users. According to research conducted by Béjar on Instagram users, 8.4% of 13- to 15-year-olds had seen someone harm themselves or threaten to harm themselves in the past week. The Guardian 

Ladies and gentlemen, please be upstanding for the return of one of the worst nameplates in Vauxhall’s long, storied history. The Frontera has returned! Of course, the New Frontera returns at a time when Vauxhalls are Good, and as such, this 2024 iteration won’t ride/bounce around on an old Isuzu platform but a Stellantis-shaped one. They’ve got a few, and they’re all very well sorted. It’ll be an electric platform, because the new Vauxhall Frontera will launch exclusively as a full battery-electric SUV. Top Gear

Chris Price