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Galaxy Z Flip YouTube Flex Mode support might just be the beginning

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Samsung sometimes has a tendency to have short term amnesia, forgetting a new product once a newer one gets released. That’s even more prominent with “experimental” but also very expensive like the Galaxy Round or even last year’s rather controversial Galaxy Fold. This year, Samsung is trying to do well by Galaxy Z Flip owners and is rolling out new features and, based on Samsung’s announcement, could just be the start of more Flex Mode compatible apps for the foldable phone.

Last week, Samsung released an update to the Galaxy Z Flip that also added a Flex Mode for its own camera app. In a nutshell, this splits the app’s UI into two so that you could prop up the phone at an angle, using the lower half as a stand while the upper half acts as your viewfinder. It is a simple yet ingenious use of the phone’s form factor and it’s reassuring that Samsung is now making another step forward with it.

This time, it’s announcing that the YouTube app has been updated to support this same Flex Mode layout. When folded at a right angle, the upper half lets you watch videos uninterrupted while you browse through YouTube independently on the lower half of the screen. Samsung promises that this mode is optimized for all sorts of YouTube video sizes and formats, though a typical 16:9 landscape video is clearly not that comfortable to look at.

Samsung boasts that this new YouTube feature is the fruit of its collaboration with Google, something that would have sounded almost unbelievable a few years back. More importantly, Flex Mode is available in the Android Support Library itself, allowing other app developers to add support for the Galaxy Z Flip. Provided they’re willing to do the work, of course.

The company also proudly described how working together with Google has made it possible to bring features like RCS, Live Caption, and Google Duo integration into its Galaxy phones. While an impressive achievement given Samsung’s reputation, it should really be the standard for all Android OEMs anyway, not just a notable and praiseworthy exception.

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The First Tesla Semi Has Been Delivered After Lengthy Delays

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There had long been suggestion Pepsi would be one of Tesla’s biggest customers — with a subsidiary spotted installing charging stations at one of its plants and test driving the trucks earlier this year. Tesla also placed an order for 100 of the high tech trucks shortly after they were announced in 2017. In October, Musk confirmed the company’s first truck was almost ready for delivery, and it would be going to the soft drink manufacturer.

Today, Tesla finally made it official and delivered its first production semis to Pepsi. Speaking at the handover, which took place at a Tesla Gigafactory in Nevada, Musk described his motivation for designing the truck. The Tesla CEO claims that trucks make up less than 1% of vehicles in the United States, but are responsible for a large chunk of emissions. Musk said it will both help the environment and improve the health of individuals living near highways. At the end of the presentation, Musk thanked Pepsico and described them as a “great partner.” 

The trucks’ keycards were then handed over to Pepsi’s representatives, followed by several high fives. The trucks’ first cargo run involved “an enormous amount of Frito Lays” which were handed out to people in attendance. Pepsi’s Kirk Tanner then took the mic and said: “I want to thank the people who have spent countless hours to make this a reality.” before thanking Elon Musk and the other Tesla representatives. Other companies are also interested in Tesla’s electric semi. Budweiser, Walmart, and UPS are amongst those who have placed pre-orders — with Budweiser ordering at least 40 of the large electric vehicles.

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Kanye West Is No Longer Buying Twitter-Rival Parler

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It’s unclear whether West’s recent controversies have anything to do with the Parler deal falling apart. In a statement shared with CNBC, Parler’s owner notes that the “decision was made in the interest of both parties in mid-November.” Parler says it will be on the lookout for the growth opportunities, without clarifying if it was looking for investors to scale up, or full-fledged buyers. The latter seems unlikely to happen, given the current state of layoffs in the tech industry and the looming fears of a recession.

Parlement Technologies reportedly had high hopes from its acquisition deal with Kanye West. Soon after the agreement press release went out, Parler sent out an email to its “VIP” users, offering them perks like a gold badge for being valuable personalities on the platform. Politico reports that the email campaign inadvertently revealed the personal contact information of nearly a dozen lawmakers and some well-known conservative personalities.

Citing an insider source, Axios reports that West’s unstable financial situation following the cancellation of lucrative deals with the likes of Adidas played a role in his Parler plans falling apart. In the meanwhile, West has returned to Twitter, after his account was restricted for a few weeks ago over sharing anti-Semitic remarks. West currently has a huge follower base of over 18 million on Twitter, which dwarfs the total number of users on Parler, as of December 2021.

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Elon Musk Says Twitter’s Potential Removal From iOS App Store Was ‘Misunderstanding’

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Barely two days after Elon Musk feuded with Apple publicly, he met with Tim Cook to settle the differences. “We resolved the misunderstanding about Twitter potentially being removed from the App Store. Tim was clear that Apple never considered doing so,” Elon Musk tweeted last evening. This was a few hours after he shared a video of Apple’s HQ to disclose the location of the meeting.

However, Elon Musk didn’t reveal if Apple will continue advertising on Twitter. According to the Washington Post, Apple was the biggest ad spender on Twitter in Q1 2022. It spent an average of $4 million per week to run ads on Twitter between January to March this year — this added up to about 4% of Twitter’s revenue. However, Reuters reports that Apple reduced its weekly ad budget on Twitter to $131,600 a few weeks after Elon Musk bought the social media company. We also haven’t heard from Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, about the agenda of his meeting with Elon Musk. 

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