THE NEWS WRAP: Google moves away from Google+ – StartupSmart

Google will no longer force users to identify themselves on its platforms through a Google+ profile.


The change will be seen on YouTube first, with comments no longer automatically appearing on Google+, and vice versa.


You can now use your normal Google profile for the other platforms, which isn’t searchable and can’t be followed.


According to Bradley Horowitz, Google’s vice president of streams, photos and sharing, it marks a “pivot” for the social network.


“We’re going to continue focusing Google+ on helping users connect around the interests they love, and retire it as the mechanism by which people share and engage within other Google products,” Horowitz says in a blog post.


Massive counterfeit iPhone operation busted

Police in Beijing have uncovered a factory producing more than 41,000 fake iPhones worth as much as $US19 million.


As Reuters reports, authorities say the investigation, which resulted in nine arrests, was sparked by a tip-off from US authorities who seized some of the fake phones.


It comes as authorities in China step up their efforts to dispel the country’s reputation for producing counterfeit goods.


EBay ditches rapid delivery service

The eBay Now service will be shut down as the company moves to trim down its initiatives in order to focus more on its core marketplace.


The rapid delivery service was launched three years ago to enable customers to buy a product from the site and have it delivered on the same day.


As cNet reports, eBay is now stepping away from this highly competitive rapid-delivery area that features the likes of Amazon, Google, Uber and a raft of other startups.


EBay chief product officer RJ Pittman says three other apps, eBay Motors, eBay Fashion and eBay Valet, will also be ditched.


“As we’re coming in and trying to ignite a new future for eBay, we need to get focused and we need to put all of our most talented people on the platforms where all the action is,” Pittman says.


The Dow Jones Industrial Average is down 127.94, falling 0.73% overnight to 17,440.59. The Australian dollar is currently trading at US73 cents.


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