20 January 2019


  • Like in the popular video-game SimCity, one can build a smart city by harnessing the powers of data science, which enables designs to be tested through computer simulation. Photo:

    From SimCity to smart city

    - Jan 18, 2019 6:10pm
    SimCity, a popular city-building video game, will mark its 30th anniversary this year. In the game, players scramble to build their ideal cities, but no matter how much effort you put into designing a virtual city, chances...
  • Arunachalam Muruganantham and his pad-making machines. Photo: DesignForFreedom/YouTube

    What a Bollywood movie tells us about the economy

    - Jan 18, 2019 6:08pm
    Some are worried that the global economic growth may run out of steam if the world’s largest growth engine, China, shifts to a lower gear.  A recent Bollywood movie, Pad Man, may offer some insight as to...
  • Foreign tourists  spent a total of 4.5 trillion yen (US$41.37 billion) in Japan last year, of which 335.5 billion yen, or 7.4 percent, was contributed by Hong Kong visitors. Photo: AFP, Bloomberg, Reuters

    Hongkongers contribute much to Japan tourism boom

    - Jan 18, 2019 11:05am
      Who doesn’t want to go to Japan for a vacation? All the delicious sushi and sashimi you can eat, a stay in a quaint and tidy ryokan, amazing sights, great shopping bargains: just the perfect therapy...
  • Chinese Ambassador to Canada Lu Shaye warned Ottawa there will be repercussions if it bans Huawei from supplying equipment to Canadian 5G networks. Photo: Reuters

    China envoy to Canada issues warning on Huawei 5G ban

    Jan 18, 2019 9:13am
    China’s envoy to Canada warned Ottawa there would be repercussions if it banned technology firm Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. from supplying equipment to Canadian 5G networks, Reuters reports.  Ambassador Lu Shaye, speaking at a news conference...
  • Facebook has been under fire for its self-admitted sluggishness in developing tools to combat extremist content and propaganda operations. Photo: Reuters

    Facebook blocks accounts linked to Russian state-owned Sputnik

    Jan 18, 2019 8:39am
    Facebook Inc. said it has removed hundreds of Russia-initiated accounts, which it judged to be involved in coordinated inauthentic behavior on its platforms, including some linked to state-owned news agency Sputnik, Reuters reports. In a separate...
  • Netflix reported revenue of US$4.19 billion for the quarter that ended in December, slightly below the US$4.21 billion that Wall Street analysts had forecast. Photo: Bloomberg

    Netflix shares dive after revenue misses estimates

    Jan 18, 2019 7:47am
    Dystopian movie Bird Box helped Netflix Inc. draw a record 8.8 million new paid streaming customers in the fourth quarter, but the company fell slightly short of Wall Street’s revenue estimates and shares tumbled 3 percent...
  • The deal with Sears chairman Eddie Lampert would keep open more than 400 stores and preserve up to 45,000 jobs, the company said. Photo: Bloomberg

    Sears chairman wins bankruptcy auction with US$5.2 billion bid

    Jan 18, 2019 7:24am
    Sears Holdings Corp. chairman Eddie Lampert won a bankruptcy auction to buy the once iconic US retailer after presenting an improved offer of US$5.2 billion, but creditors quickly moved to oppose the deal, Reuters reports.  Sears...
  • A spokesman for US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin denied the Wall Street Journal report, saying the negotiation was "an ongoing process with the Chinese that is nowhere near completion”. Photo: Bloomberg

    US Treasury’s Mnuchin weighs lifting tariffs on China: WSJ

    Jan 18, 2019 7:15am
    US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin discussed lifting some or all tariffs imposed on Chinese imports and suggested offering a tariff rollback during trade discussions scheduled for Jan. 30, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday, citing people...
  • The central government has rolled out a raft of measures to boost liquidity in the system, but the investment appetite has barely improved. Photo: AFP

    Improving business environment key to China economic revival

    - Jan 17, 2019 5:49pm
    As downward pressure mounts on China’s economy, Beijing has announced a raft of measures to boost liquidity in the financial system. However, offering more liquidity does not necessarily guarantee that people will borrow.  The People’s Bank of...
  • Facebook, led by CEO Mark Zuckerberg, is giving US$300 million in grants to various organizations that are trying to help local journalism thrive in today’s difficult media market. Photo: Reuters

    Facebook pledges US$300 mln to support local newsrooms

    - Jan 17, 2019 4:51pm
    Facebook has announced that will spend US$300 million over the next three years to provide grants to various organizations across the world that are helping the cause of local journalism. The cash commitment will be used...
  • The applications of HTC's virtual reality solutions go far beyond gaming. Photo: AFP

    HTC brings virtual reality theme park to Hong Kong

    - Jan 17, 2019 2:13pm
    Taiwanese smartphone maker HTC will open a virtual reality (VR) theme park in Hong Kong on Friday, fueling market speculation that it plans to exit the smartphone market and focus on the VR business.   VIVELAND, a...
  • Data trading is currently dominated by raw data, and transactions involving processed data and derivatives remain limited. Photo: Xinhua

    What’s holding back China’s data trading industry

    - Jan 17, 2019 1:21pm
    Trade ministers of the United States, Japan and the European Union met in Washington last week to coordinate their efforts in promoting a new industry – the trading of data.  The three parties are expected to...
  • The US-China trade war is prompting Taiwan tech firms to rethink their China manufacturing operations. Photo: Bloomberg

    Amid trade war, Taiwan firms move hi-tech production back home

    - Jan 17, 2019 11:26am
    As the Sino-US trade war intensifies, Taiwan high-technology companies are moving production back home from mainland China, as they seek to avoid tariffs in the American market and possible future retaliation by the US against China-made...
  • The major political challenge to global cooperation lies in managing our diversified and pluralistic world within the established institutional architecture, writes Lee Howell. Photo: Bloomberg

    Long live globalization

    - Jan 17, 2019 9:36am
    Will global cooperation finally emerge from the doldrums in 2019? The international community’s recent agreement on a “rulebook” for implementing the Paris climate agreement seems to offer some hope. But opinion polls suggest that many remain...
  • US officials have warned allies that Huawei is ultimately at the beck and call of the Chinese state, while warning that its network equipment may contain “back doors” that could open them up to cyber espionage. Photo: Bloomberg

    Germany mulls ways to exclude Huawei from 5G auction: report

    Jan 17, 2019 9:26am
    The German government is considering stricter security requirements and other ways to exclude China’s Huawei Technologies from a buildout of fifth-generation (5G) mobile networks, the Handelsblatt newspaper reported.  Handelsblatt, citing government sources, said government officials were...
  • US Republican Senator Tom Cotton has accused Chinese telecom equipment giant Huawei as being an intelligence-gathering arm of the Chinese Communist Party. Photo: Bloomberg

    US lawmakers introduce bills targeting China’s Huawei, ZTE

    Jan 17, 2019 8:55am
    A bipartisan group of American lawmakers introduced bills on Wednesday that would ban the sale of US chips or other components to Huawei Technologies, ZTE Corp or other Chinese telecoms firms that violate Washington’s sanctions or...
  • Luckin Coffee, which has emerged as a strong challenger to Starbucks in China, is said to have begun preparations for a Hong Kong listing. Photo: Reuters

    Will Luckin Coffee prove a good IPO bet?

    - Jan 16, 2019 4:20pm
    Chinese startup Luckin Coffee is reportedly seeking an IPO in Hong Kong this year, even as global coffee chain giant Starbucks has warned of a slowdown in the China market. Targeting a similar customer group, Luckin’s...
  • Consumers should not rely on smart watches and fitness bands for precise measurements, but rather, they should consider the information these devices provide as mere reference in keeping track of daily activities. Photo: Bloomberg

    Smart watches are not that smart, says Consumer Council

    - Jan 16, 2019 2:31pm
    Smart watches and fitness bands are the in-thing – not only as fashion accessories but as valuable devices for those who want to stay fit. However, they are not always reliable. Our Consumer Council went the...
  • Chinese startup ByteDance has unveiled a new video messaging app, raising the prospect of a faceoff with Tencent's WeChat messenger. Photo: Reuters

    Can ByteDance’s new app challenge WeChat in China?

    - Jan 16, 2019 1:28pm
    After scoring huge success with the short-video clip sharing service Tik Tok, China’s ByteDance is stepping up its game and pushing into social media, an arena long dominated by Tencent’s WeChat.  On Tuesday, the Beijing-based startup,...
  • Fed chairman Jerome Powell has been accused of sending mixed signals to the market in relation to the pace of monetary policy adjustment. Photo: Reuters

    Fed chief keeps confusing the market

    - Jan 16, 2019 11:12am
    Equity markets witnessed a remarkable bounce over the last two weeks. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index rallied 7 percent from the trough since Christmas Eve, while in the US the S&P 500 index gained 11...

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