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🚫 Apple AI Features Get Blocked In EU

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Hey Waivly Crew! 🌊 In today’s edition, Apple halts its AI features in Europe due to the Digital Markets Act. Meanwhile, Spotify introduces a new $10.99 "Basic" premium plan, excluding audiobooks.

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Here’s what’s on the horizon today:

  • Amazon accused of retaliating against protesting employees

  • Apple delays European launch of AI features

  • Spotify launches new Basic plan in the US

Let’s dive in!


Amazon accused of retaliating against protesting employees

The National Labor Relations Board has filed a complaint against Amazon in Seattle, alleging the company unlawfully disciplined and terminated an employee for organizing walkouts against new return-to-work directives last May.

In February 2023, Amazon CEO Andy Jassy announced that starting May 1st, most employees would need to work from the office at least three days a week, with some roles exempt. This led to thousands of employees signing petitions and staging a walkout in protest, but Jassy reaffirmed the mandate in August.

The NLRB claims Amazon interrogated employees about the walkout via its Chime system and retaliated against the organizer by placing them on a performance improvement plan and offering severance in exchange for resignation. The employee’s name is redacted, but The Seattle Times detailed similar treatment of a walkout organizer last year.

Apple delays European launch of AI features

Apple's AI features won't be available in Europe for now due to regulatory concerns. The company announced it will block Apple Intelligence, iPhone Mirroring, and SharePlay Screen Sharing in the European Union because of the Digital Markets Act.

Apple cited concerns that the DMA's interoperability requirements could compromise product integrity, user privacy, and data security. As a result, these features are not expected to arrive in the EU until 2025. Apple made this announcement in an email to The Guardian.

At this year's WWDC, Apple introduced Apple Intelligence, which includes features for prioritizing notifications, drafting emails, automated audio transcriptions, and a revamped Siri with ChatGPT integration. Additionally, iPhone Mirroring will allow desktop control of iPhones, and SharePlay Screen Sharing will enable remote device control via FaceTime.

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Spotify launches new Basic plan in the US

Spotify has introduced a new "Basic" premium plan priced at $10.99 per month, which includes all music streaming benefits but excludes audiobooks. This move comes shortly after the platform raised prices on its premium subscription plans earlier this month.

The Premium Individual plan now costs $11.99 per month, up from $10.99, while other plans saw similar increases. Initially justifying the price hikes with new additions like audiobooks, Spotify's introduction of the Basic plan indicates a strategic shift to diversify offerings and maximize subscriber revenue.

Additionally, Spotify is now offering audiobooks as an add-on for $9.99 per month to users of its free, ad-supported tier. This flexibility allows the platform to cater to different user preferences, appealing separately to music enthusiasts and avid audiobook listeners alike.


Atefeh Sadr

Atefeh Sadr is a female visual artist from the Middle East. She began drawing at age two and became a full-time artist in 2017. Before this, she spent nearly 15 years in sales and marketing for companies like Samsung, Unilever, and Danone, while pursuing art on the side.

Shubham Rawal

Shubham Rawal has been developing software and apps since the age of 13, starting his first profitable venture at just 15 years old. In 2021, he founded StockPe, a stock and crypto game app that uses real market data to help users learn how to invest.


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🎶 Spotify launches a new Basic streaming plan

💬 Amazon's AI-powered Alexa could cost up to $10/m

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