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27 nations ink cybersecurity pledge, Gojek launches video streaming platform GoPlay & More News

Updated: Sep 27, 2019

This week in tech news: Gojek takes on Netflix with video-streaming platform 'Goplay', 27 countries sign cybersecurity pledge and Alibaba unveils self-developed AI chip for cloud computing services.

Tech news you need to know, in two minutes or less.

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27 countries sign cybersecurity pledge with digs at China and Russia

Twenty-seven countries have signed a joint agreement on what constitutes fair and foul play in cyberspace — with a nod toward condemning China and Russia. The statement, released on Monday at the United Nations ahead of the beginning of the UN General Assembly's General Debate, is largely a broadly written agreement that countries should follow international law. While views of what constitutes acceptable state-sponsored hacking vary, the US and its allies generally agree on basic rules. It's fair game for intelligence services to hack targets purely to spy and to attack military targets, but attacking civilian infrastructure or to give a country an economic advantage is off limits.

The countries that signed are: Australia, Belgium, Canada, Colombia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, the Republic of Korea, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States. The signatories mirror the large group of countries involved the previous two occasions that countries jointly blamed a cyberattack on one country, China, for a more than decade-long hacking campaign, and Russia for creating the infamous NotPetya ransomware worm, which spiralled out of control and locked up computers around the world.

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Indonesia’s ride-hailing giant Gojek launches video streaming service GoPlay

On-demand video streaming giant Netflix, which is increasingly expanding its footprint in developing markets, now has a new competitor in Indonesia: Gojek.

Gojek launched a video-streaming service 'Goplay' featuring original movies and TV shows on Thursday (Sept 26), as the firm makes a big push into online content in South-east Asia's largest economy, its entertainment chief said. GoPlay will compete with a range of streaming services such as Netflix, iFlix, and Hooq.

"We see that there's a gap where people want to watch Indonesian high-quality content, but where the only choice to see it is to go to the cinema," Gojek Entertainment group chief executive Edy Sulistyo told Reuters in an interview. Though the streaming service focuses on Indonesian content, Gojek has inked partnerships with foreign production companies such as South Korean media giants CJ E&M and SM Entertainment to feature their TV shows on the platform, according to the report. About 125 million people in Indonesia, or half of the nation’s population, is currently online. Sulistyo said Gojek sees a lot of potential for GoPlay’s growth in the country.

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Alibaba unveils AI chip to enhance cloud computing power

Chinese Retail Giant Alibaba announced recently that they would soon begin marketing a self-developed AI chip that is streamlined for use in cloud computing. The chip, already being used within Alibaba itself to power their internet searches, will be named Hanguang 800. In addition to powering searches, Hanguang 800 is also being used to deliver personalized recommendations to clients and handle automatic translation duties of websites.

Overseas tech giants such as Alphabet Inc and Facebook Inc are also developing their own custom chips, aiming to improve the performance of specialised AI tasks at company-operated data centres. The chip was developed by DAMO Academy, a research institute Alibaba launched in late 2017, and T-Head, the company's specialised semiconductor division. Alibaba's foray into the chip sector comes amid efforts by Beijing to promote China's semiconductor industry and reduce the country's reliance on foreign imports of core technologies. Alibaba also released its first core processor IP in July based on RISC-V open-source chip architecture.

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