The Morning After: Jeff Bezos plans to step down as CEO of Amazon

Engadget, Mat Smith and Richard Lawler
·4 min read
Amazon Founder and CEO Jeff Bezos addresses the audience during a keynote session at the Amazon Re:MARS conference on robotics and artificial intelligence at the Aria Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada on June 6, 2019.

Amazon’s founder and CEO is stepping down this year. Jeff Bezos plans to stay involved with the business as executive chair of the Amazon board, but he says he plans to focus on other businesses and projects, including The Washington Post, the Day 1 Fund and space-faring Blue Origin.

I’ll be honest, you’ve probably never heard of the incoming Amazon CEO, but Andy Jassy has been in charge of Amazon Web Services since 2016. And AWS is a big deal for the company. It earned $13.5 billion in profits in 2020, up 47 percent over 2019, and accounted for more than half of Amazon’s total profits in 2020.

Amazon Helix HQ2
Amazon Helix HQ2

If this year is anything to go by, Jassy will be busy. Yesterday alone, the company agreed to pay a $61.7 million fine over allegations that Amazon had failed to pay out tips to its Flex delivery drivers. It also revealed its latest big-budget Super Bowl ad featuring Michael B. Jordan and teased this twisty skyscraper with a rooftop forest for its next office complex in Virginia.

— Mat Smith

The Mass Effect trilogy is coming back May 14th in 4K

Featuring: Extended ending! Shorter elevator rides!

Mass Effect Legendary Edition
Mass Effect Legendary Edition

Mass Effect Legendary Edition, a refreshed version of BioWare’s iconic sci-fi trilogy, is set to come out on May 14th. The game is heading to PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4, and it’ll also hit PS5 and Xbox Series X and S (via forward compatibility) the same day.

Expect a graphical upgrade to match these more powerful consoles. The Legendary Edition is a complete visual and fidelity-focused overhaul of the series, adding 4K Ultra HD with HDR support to all three games. Developers at BioWare have upgraded the majority of the characters, smoothing out textures and adding features such as ambient occlusion and subsurface scattering to make environments feel more lifelike. Just don’t expect any changes to character dynamics and romantic possibilities. The remastered trilogy is available to pre-order right now.
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A Netflix leak accidentally killed Nintendo's live-action Zelda series

Spoilers.

Breath of the Wild
Breath of the Wild

You might remember back 2015, The Wall Street Journal reported that Nintendo was putting together a live-action adaptation of the Legend of Zelda series for Netflix, described as “Game of Thrones for a family audience.” The information came from an anonymous source close to the project, but it never quite happened. According to Adam Conover of Adam Ruins Everything, when a separate claymation Starfox project was canceled and he asked his boss what happened, he said that someone at Netflix leaked information on Legend of Zelda.

Conover recalled the boss saying that Nintendo “pulled the plug on the entire program to adapt these things.”
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YouTube and Search continue to make Alphabet tons of money

And YouTube’s Shorts player is picking up 3.5 billion daily views.

Google parent company, Alphabet, has released its fourth quarter and fiscal year 2020 results and, unsurprisingly, it’s thriving. The company made $56.9 billion in the last quarter, which is a 23 percent increase over the $46.1 billion it recorded last year. In the fourth quarter of 2020, Google Search & Other revenues totaled $31.9 billion, while YouTube ads raked in $6.9 billion. On an earnings call, CEO Sundar Pichai touched on some of the company’s latest announcements, including a multi-year partnership between Android Auto and Ford, new Maps features and finally closing its acquisition of Fitbit.
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SpaceX SN9 Starship test ends in another fiery crash

The craft hit the ground hard when it tried to slow its descent.

SpaceX SN9 test flight
SpaceX SN9 test flight

After a week of drama involving the FAA, SpaceX tested its latest Starship prototype, SN9, out of its Texas launch facility on Tuesday afternoon. After the craft successfully lifted off and ascended to 10 km above the surface of the planet, it ran into trouble. Instead of staying vertical and slowing down its descent, the SN9 belly flopped and hit the ground hard — real hard.
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EA Sports is bringing college football back

After seven years away.

EA Sports College Football
EA Sports College Football

The last game in EA’s college football series was NCAA 14, before lawsuits over using the likenesses of unpaid athletes caused a hiatus. Now EA is getting back into the college game, although exactly how is unclear.

Through a partnership with collegiate trademark licensing company CLC, EA Sports has secured access to the logos, stadiums, uniforms and gameday traditions of more than 100 institutions, so there’ll be some degree of authenticity. EA has only just started work on College Football and noted that word of a release timeline is “still to come as the project progresses in the years ahead.”
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Boston Dynamics trains Spot the robot dog to charge itself

“Where’s the (power) lead?”

Spot
Spot

Boston Dynamics newest dog-bot can top itself up. Spot Enterprise comes with a charging dock that allows the robot to replenish its batteries without the help of humans, like some recent robot vacuums. This means it can operate in remote or dangerous areas for longer. Along with Spot Enterprise, Boston Dynamics announced a browser-based system called Scout, which allows users to operate Spot remotely. You can either control the robot manually or run pre-programmed actions.
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