Ahead of this year’s elections, The Verge polled Americans on which big tech companies they trust with their personal information, as well as which big tech companies they think should be broken up.
Amazon had the highest favorability rating out of all tech companies (91%), followed by Google and YouTube sharing second place with 90%. The poll results are completed by Apple with an 81% favorability rating, Facebook with 71% and Twitter in the last place with 61%. While 39% of respondents said they had an unfavorable view of Twitter, 29% had the same view of Facebook and 9% thought the same of Amazon.
Americans believe that Google, Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, Netflix and YouTube have an overall positive effect on society, unlike Facebook and Twitter who have the highest negative impact score. Interestingly enough, it is a popular belief that the biggest tech companies have too much power and should split up into smaller companies.
Some quick stats around this from survey respondents:
56 percent said the government should break up tech companies if they control too much of the economy
72 percent said that Facebook has too much power
51 percent said Google and YouTube should be split into separate companies
In privacy we trust
But this isn’t all that bad for tech companies. 75% of the survey respondents say they trust Microsoft, while 73% of those surveyed trust Amazon. Pulling up the rear is Facebook - only 41% of Americans say they trust the social media network to safeguard their personal information.
Fewer than half of those surveyed were aware that Google owns YouTube. The majority of survey respondents were unaware that Facebook controls Instagram and WhatsApp. In fact, it’s not uncommon these days to hear people renounce Facebook while in the same breath vowing to only use Instagram.
Speaking of Facebook, when asked about their top reasons for not using the platform, 46% of respondents listed privacy concerns as their main motivation for ditching the site. Among the top reasons for leaving Facebook we find the lack of interest in its content, disapproval of Facebook business practices and preference to use other of social media platforms.
Overall, a strong majority of people said they would be disappointed if Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Netflix or Apple disappeared. Shockingly (or not) 33% of those surveyed said they would be disappointed if Twitter was to vanish.
Thoma Bravo announced that it has closed its hefty $3.9 billion acquisition of security firm Sophos, marking yet another private equity deal in the books. Thoma Bravo, the private equity firm, has acquired more than 200 software and technology companies representing more than $50 billion of value.
Contract management service DocuSign announced that it is acquiring Seal Software for $188 million in cash. DocuSign previously invested $15 million in Seal Software in 2019. The deal reflects the increasingly important role that artificial intelligence will play in digital document management.
Smart home services provider Plume has raised $85 million in its latest round of financing. The increase in connected devices in the home — from fridges and smart speakers to TVs and light bulbs — has created more potential for internet “blackspots,” something mesh network companies like Plume are eager to fix.
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