Key Speakers At The Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC)

Apple signaled to Wall Street that the worst of the iPhone decline is behind it, as it reported another slump in smartphone sales on Tuesday.

The Cupertino-based company has come under pressure to prove that its flagship product can grow again after reporting a 15 per cent drop in iPhones sold in the three months to June. Overall revenues fell 15 per cent to $42.4bn, with net income down 27 per cent to $7.8bn.

Nonetheless, Luca Maestri, Apple’s chief financial officer, said that iPhone sales fell at a slower rate than they had done in March, which he said had “turned out to be the low point for our cycle”. Apple shares rose 5 per cent after-hours on the more positive outlook.

Follow Tim Bradshaw and Richard Waters as they report live reaction to the results and commentary from Tim Cook, Apple chief executive, and Mr Maestri on the conference call with analysts. 

MAS_picn_SundarPichai

Google’s biggest event of the year included the latest on its plans for virtual reality, artificial intelligence and messaging – key battlegrounds in the future of computing. Coverage here of the opening keynote at the annual developer conference and reaction as Google CEO Sundar Pichai took the stage. 

Apple Inc. Announces New iPhone And iPad Pro...Greg Joswiak, vice president of iPod, iPhone, and iOS product marketing for Apple Inc., announces the iPhone SE smartphone during an Apple event in Cupertino, California, U.S., on Monday, March 21, 2016. Apple Inc. Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook is expected to unveil a smaller iPhone Monday in attempt to woo those who are holding on to older versions. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg *** Local Caption *** Greg Joswiak

Nearly nine years after it shook the communications and computing worlds, the iPhone is facing the prospect of first quarterly unit sales decline. 

Apple Unveils New Versions Of iPhone 6, Apple TV

Apple took over one of the largest venues in San Francisco for the launch of its latest iPhone on Wednesday.
Tim Cook, Apple’s chief executive, climbed on the stage of the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium to unveil an updated iPhone 6S with enhanced touchscreen capabilities, a better camera and a new “rose gold” finish. The new smartphone was upstaged by the long-awaited overhaul of Apple TV, with Siri voice control, a new remote and a full App Store, bringing iOS games to the living room for the first time. New Apple Watch features and a supersized iPad Pro made appearances too. Tim Bradshaw and Richard Waters covered the event. 

In Kevin Martin, former chairman of the Federal Communications Commission under George W Bush, Facebook has just hired a moderate on the all-important issue of network neutrality.

One of his first challenges: to prevent a repeat of the backlash seen in India last month against Facebook’s Internet.org, which critics see as a blatant attempt by the social network to colonise the mobile internet. Read more

Even by the standards of today’s rapidly ascending start-up valuations, Docker has reached unicorn status remarkably quickly.

Barely two years after releasing its software to the world, the open source company has raised a $95m funding round that one source says puts it either at – or very close to – a $1bn valuation. With open source once more the flavour of the month among venture capitalists, this will be one of the more conspicuous tests of whether giving away software can be the route to a seriously large business.

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He’s at it again. With 1.86m followers on Twitter, Elon Musk is a one-man publicity machine – as he showed on Monday, with the promise of big Tesla news to come next month.

The Tesla and SpaceX boss has been wielding the tweet megaphone with increasing effectiveness over the past couple of years. Now, he just needs to show a little more control over the messaging. Read more

Silicon Valley’s super-rich tech companies have found a new way to compete: which of them can come up with the coolest new headquarters?

With the unveiling of a new, adaptive building style that it says will have the capacity to evolve over decades, Google on Friday made its own bid for architectural immortality, following Apple and Facebook.

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Google’s Play Store is taking off. It has handed out more than $7bn to app developers in the last 12 months. And after an apparent slow-down at Apple, it looks like it may be closing the gap with the App Store:

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What is Slack? Even for Stewart Butterfield, co-founder of the online collaboration tool of the moment, it isn’t an easy question to answer.

“We’re working on a tight articulation of that,” he says “It’s a new category.” Whatever you call it, though, Slack’s first year has been impressive. Read more

You’re standing on the surface of Mars. You look down and marvel at the detail, then up to the horizon, following the ridge of mountains around to your left. You jump: the Mars Rover is right behind your left shoulder, taller than you are, one of its cameras slanted to the side and looking like a pet robot waiting for an order.

This isn’t some gamer version of Mars. It’s the real thing. Every rock, in clear 3D. In front of you stands the bronze avatar of a scientist ready to talk about the experiments you’re going to perform.

Microsoft has lacked the “wow” factor for some time. It’s been left to Google, Apple and Facebook, with its acquisition of virtual reality company Oculus, to set the standards in technical daring and creative ambition.

Not any more. With HoloLens, the “mixed reality” headset it unveiled on Wednesday, Microsoft is suddenly a contender in one of the most exciting races in the tech world: to mix the real and virtual worlds in ways that transform both.

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The sliding Bitcoin price has provoked a fair amount of schadenfreude recently. But it hasn’t done much to dampen the spirits of the start-up investors flocking to the market.

A case in point: Coinbase has just raised $75m in what is the biggest publicly disclosed funding round yet for a Bitcoin company. Also notable is that the backers this time include the New York Stock Exchange, BBVA and former Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit. Read more

Faddish mobile apps and instant 20-something billionaires have become the public face of Silicon Valley’s latest boom. But some in the tech industry have ambitious ideas that could have a far more profound impact on the world.

In the latest Weekend FT magazine, we report on some of the ideas that will shape the future. Also: our take on life on the front lines of the tech boom, including what it’s really like to run a start-up (hint: it’s not all stock options and free food).

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The announcement of a new Windows isn’t what it used to be – even when you skip past little-loved 9 (a number which didn’t test well with focus groups, apparently) and jump straight to Windows 10.

But converging the different Windows operating systems on a single core, with distinct user interfaces suited to each type of device, is still an important step forward for Microsoft. It also represents the sort of evolution that might, in time, allow the Windows 8 debacle to fade into history. Read more

Ray Ozzie, the man who once filled Bill Gates’ very big shoes as chief software architect at Microsoft, is back.

His latest start-up – a voice-powered collaboration tool for workers – looks like a not-so-subtle snub of his former employer. It is, he says, what Skype (now owned by Microsoft) might have become, had it not given up on “innovation in depth”. Read more

CEOs love talking about the need for focus. But they’re not so good at picking things they’re not going to do as a result.

Satya Nadella has made a start. Five months after moving into the top job, he has finally admitted that the Xbox is not a core part of Microsoft’s business. What he hasn’t said yet is what he’s going to do with it. Read more

Until now, Facebook has struggled – and failed – to strike the right note in response to the disquiet over its deliberate alteration of users’ moods for a research study.

On Wednesday it got another chance, as Senator Mark Warner wrote to the Federal Trade Commission asking it to investigate. What Facebook came up with in response still didn’t classify as an actual apology, but at least the company no longer sounded so bemused by all the fuss. Read more

Venture capitalists are lining up to back bitcoin start-ups. On Monday, Xapo bagged some of Silicon Valley’s biggest names for its latest $20m round: Greylock’s Reid Hoffman and Index Ventures’ Mike Volpi, not to mention personal money from Max Levchin, Yuri Milner and Jerry Yang.

But all of this VC activity raises an interesting question. If these investors truly believe the crypto-currency will one day support a significant new financial services industry, why not just buy the currency and hold it? Read more

Marc Benioff, Salesforce.com chief

Salesforce.com, the company that did more than any other to invent the software-as-a-service industry, is reaching a turning point.

After years of rapid growth, it has a pressing need for the more evolved infrastructure, processes and rounded management team of the large company it has become. And with growth starting to slow, it is coming closer to a seminal moment: when investors will start expecting it to report real profits, and not just on a pro-forma basis. The appointment of a new chief financial officer on Monday is the latest sign that is preparing for the changes. Read more

The US Supreme Court has rejected Google’s bid to limit the legal fall-out from the StreetView spying case.

In the process, it has also delivered its second decision in a week that interprets how the country’s privacy laws should apply when it comes to new technologies. Both times, it has come down on the side of stronger legal protections for the individual. Read more