Good morning. Automation is playing a more important role in an information-intensive world. The sheer volume of data, which compels businesses to constantly update their apps to account for user feedback or make incremental improvements, compels IT departments to automate software development and jobs wherever possible. There's just so much to be done, and people can't do it all on their own as quickly or as cheaply as it needs to be done.
During the past year, AT&T has started to automate repetitive parts of certain jobs by using software bots, part of a movement called robotic process automation, which is expected to jump to $4.98 billion by 2020 from $183 million in 2013, according to Transparency Market Research.
Sales people have a bot that automatically pulls leads from multiple systems. "We are using bots in a pretty big way," Candy Conway, vice president of global operations in AT&T's global customer service organization, tells CIO Journal's Rachael King.
Cloud costs hold steady despite competition: Survey. Fierce competitive pricing among cloud vendors notwithstanding, enterprise IT buyers say they saw little or no change in their total costs for cloud services over the past year, and they don't expect those costs to go down anytime soon, UBS Group AG reports. Some cloud services are getting cheaper, Eric Sheridan, managing director of internet and interactive entertainment at UBS, tells CIO Journal, but the practice by vendors of bundling more products and services is keeping overall costs from declining. Meanwhile, many companies are boosting spending by expanding their use of cloud services, or are in the process of migrating existing systems to the cloud for the first time.
Kimberly-Clark names former Wal-Mart Exec CIO. Suja Chandrasekaran, former global chief technology officer and chief data officer at Wal-Mart Stores., has joined Kimberly-Clark Corp. as chief information officer. She started the new job Monday and reports to Chief Financial Officer Maria Henry.
Opinion gap complicates public's relationship with scientists. With new digital tools allowing researchers to apply scientific methods to just about any domain of knowledge, science is more important than ever, CIO Journal Columnist Irving Wladawsky-Berger writes. But recent polling data reveals a large opinion gap between the general public and scientists on a number of scientific issues. If not bridged, that gap could have negative implications for future policy development and programs that require public decision-making.
Apple's big investment last week is about more than ride-sharing. Apple Inc.'s $1 billion investment in Chinese ride-sharing company Didi Chuxing Technology Co. provides Apple with a rich data source for its self-driving vehicle push. It also could provide benefits to Apple's mobile ecosystem. Ride-sharing apps are closely linked to payment services, such as Apple Pay, says the WSJ. They also can be the foundation for other mobile commerce transactions such as deliveries. Supporting the local favorite in its rivalry against Uber Technology Inc. could go a long way towards telling the Chinese government that it's interested in local business, the New York Timesys. Regulators there have turned their attention to Apple, shutting down its iBooks and iTunes movie stores. Apple CEO Tim Cook met with Didi officials at an Apple Store in Beijing on Monday, Reuters re ports.
Google faces $3 billion fine by European Commission for monopoly abuse. The fine comes in the wake of a seven-year investigation into the search engine. It would be the highest punishment to date by European officials over anti-trust issues, and could be handed down before the summer, according to sources close to the situation cited by The Telegraph. The EC's levied a $1.25 billion fine against Intel over similar issues. Officials said the fine didn't close the case against Google for stifling competition online.
E-commerce battle of the giants takes new forms. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is testing a two-day shipping subscription service and building a regional delivery network as part of a $2 billion investment in technology and logistics, the Journal's Laura Stevens and Sarah Nassauer report. E-commerce rival Amazon.com meanwhile announced it was expanding its private label service to include its first broad push into perishable foods, says Greg Bensinger for the WSJ.
Alibaba and SoftBank partner in cloud. Alibaba Group Holding and SoftBank Group said Friday they will form a joint venture to launch cloud-computing services in Japan. While financial terms weren't disclosed, SoftBank said in a release it will fund 60% of the joint venture, the WSJ's Alyssa Abkowitz and Alexander Martin report. The new venture, SB Cloud Corp., will open a data center in Japan to provide public cloud-computing services—in which a company's private data are managed by an outside provider—from Alibaba Cloud, Alibaba's cloud-computing arm, to Japanese businesses, ranging from startups to multinational companies.
Swift finds evidence of second malware attack. The Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, a cooperative that runs the international messaging system between banks, said hackers targeted a commercial bank and managed to send Swift messages using the bank's valid codes, the Journal's Katy Burne reports. The attack followed the theft in February of $81 million from Bangladesh's account at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Swift, a member-owned industry cooperative, handles the bulk of world-wide cross-border payment instructions between banks. The breaches raise the prospect that the system isn't fully secure.
Brooklyn ruling opens way to Microsoft case against Justice Department. A Brooklyn magistrate judge has rejected the Justice Department's practice of getting gag orders against technology companies, the WSJ reports. "The government cannot…obtain an order that constrains the freedom of service providers to disclose information to their customers without making a particularized showing of need," U.S. Magistrate Judge James Orenstein wrote in a decision denying 15 separate government applications for gag orders against service providers. The Thursday ruling could bolster an April lawsuit filed by Microsoft Corp. against the Justice Department, alleging that the agency's use of gag orders violates the constitutional rights of the company and its customers.
Fears of Facebook bias seem to be overblown. As far as filtering fears are concerned, it's Facebook Inc.'s news feed–home of baby updates and pics of margarita-sipping on the beach–and not the trending topics section, which occupies little real estate, that matters more. And even here the WSJ's Christopher Mims can't find proof that the algorithm is rigged. At the end of the day, is it substantially worse than in the heyday of newspapers and magazines, when readers in major cities could choose to get their news from among a dozen or more publications tailored to their biases?"
Google to make HTML5 default for Chrome, replacing Flash. The move is expected to come by the end of the year, VentureBeat reports, and ends a complicated relationship between Chrome and Flash. The plugin has been fading from the online market, amid ongoing security glitches and other issues. Since September, Chrome has been automatically pausing some Flash-enabled content, such as ads and animations.
EVERYTHING ELSE YOU NEED TO KNOW
Companies rein in retirement-plan fees. Firms are stepping up efforts to offer lower-cost 401(k) retirement plans, a trend that has already sharply driven down average fees and is likely to continue. An explosion of information about plan fees has helped increase bargaining power for companies in negotiations with fund providers. And a wave of successful lawsuits against companies alleging their plans had high charges has also led many to seek out lower-priced options for employees.
Where art thou, IPOs? Initial public offerings are in a funk, and June could determine whether it lasts. In January, no companies listed in the U.S. Since then, deal activity has been roughly a third of what it was in the same period last year, according to Dealogic. June is typically one of the busiest months of the year for initial public offerings, and several companies are expected to move ahead with deals then, if not sooner.
European stocks fall as Chinese economic data disappoint. Global stocks struggled for momentum Monday as disappointing Chinese data fueled concerns about the world's second-largest economy. Futures pointed to a flat open for the S&P 500, even as oil prices rose sharply. Changes in futures don't necessarily reflect market moves after the opening bell. The Stoxx Europe 600 was down 0.5% halfway through the session, with holidays across the region expected to keep trading volumes light. China's industrial production, retail sales and investment data released over the weekend all came in below expectations despite recent monetary stimulus measures.
Tom Loftus and Angus Loen contributed to this article. The Morning Download comes from the editors of CIO Journal and cues up the most important news in business technology every weekday morning. Send us your tips, compliments and complaints. You can get The Morning Download emailed to you each weekday morning by clicking http://on.wsj.com/TheMorningDownloadSignup
Lihat Sumbernya → The Morning Download: AT&T Automates More Routine Tasks
Download MP3 Terbaru → Mc Guim� Mp3 Download