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In This List

Google to buy Twitter's mobile development unit; NBCU to shut down Esquire

COVID-19 Lockdown Boosted Growth Of Digital Platforms

Asia-Pacific markets improve broadband speeds despite COVID-19 impact

Simplifying The Assessment of Company Fundamental Data

China COVID-19 Trends In TV, Video


Google to buy Twitter's mobile development unit; NBCU to shut down Esquire

Top News

* Alphabet Inc. unit Google Inc. agreed to buy Twitter Inc. unit Fabric as part of the tech giant's goal to further its mobile development for iOS, Android as well as for mobile web apps, according to an official blog post. Fabric will join Google's Developer Product Group and will work with the Firebase team, Google's mobile development platform.

* Comcast Corp.'s NBCUniversal Media LLC decided to close Esquire Network (US), about a month after it was dropped by AT&T Inc.'s DIRECTV and U-verse, Variety reports. The company reportedly plans to relaunch Esquire as a digital-only platform on Esquire.com.

Internet & OTT

* Hulu LLC is working to launch the offline viewing feature for users in a "few months," Hulu CEO Mike Hopkins told Adweek in an interview. Hopkins also said the video service will introduce a streaming bundle for subscribers in the "next few months."

* Hulu unveiled user profiles for subscribers accessing the service via its app on Apple Inc.'s iOS, TechCrunch.com reports. Rolled out as part of an update for the app, the move allows subscribers to select a special profile for children.

* Google's YouTube rolled out an in-app messaging feature for Canadian users, Canada's Financial Post reports. Users can access the social chat feature via the YouTube app on Android and iOS.

* About 80 rights groups criticized Facebook Inc. for allegedly employing "racially biased censorship" on the social network, Reuters reports, citing a response sent to a December 2016 letter from Senior Vice President Joel Kaplan. The rights groups, such as SumOfUs, Center for Media Justice, and the American Civil Liberties Union, found the company's disclosure about its removal policies and cooperation with law enforcement unsatisfactory and suggested that the issue could be addressed "only through direct activist intervention or significant media attention."

Film & TV Programming

* Viacom Inc.'s Paramount Home Media Distribution inked a new distribution deal for 2017 with Redbox Automated Retail LLC, the company said. Under the deal, Paramount will continue to provide Redbox access to its newly released DVDs and Blu-ray titles on the same day they are released in stores.

Technology

* Facebook announced plans to set up a data center in Denmark, Reuters reports. The new data center, which will be located in the city of Odense, will be the company's third such facility outside the U.S.

Multichannel

* The FCC's Enforcement Bureau "admonished" T-Mobile US Inc. for failing to take actions to protect its customers' data in relation to a 2015 hack, Multichannel News reports. The hack resulted in a third party gaining access to about 15 million customers' confidential information, including names, addresses, birthdates, and encrypted fields with Social Security and ID numbers.

The day ahead

Early morning futures indicators pointed to a lower opening for the U.S. market.

In Asia, the Hang Seng fell 0.21% to 23,049.96, and the Nikkei 225 was up 0.94% to 19,072.25.

In Europe, as of midday, the FTSE 100 was down 0.48% to 7,212.65, and the Euronext 100 was up 0.02% to 933.71.

On the macro front

The housing starts report, the jobless claims report, the EIA natural gas report, the EIA petroleum status report, the Fed balance sheet and the money supply report are due out today.

Featured news

The Daily Dose Asia-Pacific: No arrest for Samsung heir; Indonesia threatens Google in tax dispute: A South Korean court rejected an arrest warrant being sought for Samsung Group's Lee Jae-yong, while Indonesia is threatening to take legal action against Google if it does not provide data for a government tax probe.

VR: Judging the real opportunity: People inside the virtual reality industry are very confident that the time for VR has arrived. But people just outside the industry still seem somewhat hesitant.

How data analytics is creating a flatter world for marketers: As more companies leverage data and data partnerships, the lines between industries and consumer demographics are disappearing, at least for those that can keep up.

Hires and Fires: US Media & Comm director moves through Jan. 18: S&P Global Market Intelligence presents a rundown of board changes in the media and communications industries.

Conference Chatter: TV execs: Bingeing is bad for business: A key mantra of the television industry has been to give viewers content when they want it, how they want it and where they want it. But that seems to be changing.

Tech Time: AT&T, Qualcomm unit, Ericsson seal 5G trials partnership: In this feature, S&P Global Market Intelligence presents a bi-weekly global roundup of the latest developments in technology.

Iflix arrives in Pakistan; Disney inks streaming deal with Star India: In this biweekly Asia video spotlight feature, S&P Global Market Intelligence provides a roundup of news related to over-the-top, video-on-demand and other online video initiatives in different Asian markets.

The Daily Dose Europe: Bertelsmann mulls publisher stake hike; new CEO for T-Mobile Netherlands: German media conglomerate Bertelsmann SE & Co. KGaA is considering a stake hike in trade publisher Penguin Random House LLC, while Deutsche Telekom AG unit T-Mobile Netherlands appointed Søren Abildgaard as its new CEO.

Featured research

Multichannel Trends: US Multichannel Market Quarterly Industry Presentation, Q4'16: SNL Kagan's latest quarterly presentation report examining industry trends and data for the U.S. multichannel sector.

Multichannel Trends: Cable One turns acquirer in NewWave deal at 11x projected EBITDA: Cable One Inc.'s planned acquisition of NewWave Communications speaks to the vitality and ambition of the recently public entity and confounds M&A predictions that had Cable One on the other side of a potential transaction.

Economics of TV & Film: Programming & Film Trends Quarterly Industry Presentation, Q4'16: SNL Kagan's latest quarterly presentation report examining industry trends and data for the U.S. programming and film sector.

Economics of Advertising: Advertising Quarterly Industry Presentation, Q4 '16: SNL Kagan's latest quarterly presentation report examining industry trends and data for the advertising sector.

Economics of Advertising: NFL reclaims top telecast spot in December '16: Bolstered by the popularity of the Dallas Cowboys, NBC (US) secured the top telecast spot for the month with its coverage of the team's game against the New York Giants on Dec. 11, 2016, according to data from comScore's TV Essentials.

Recent earnings

Netflix execs: Partnerships minor for record growth, no plans to add sports: Netflix Inc. notched record growth in the fourth quarter of 2016, saying that it was more because of its internal strategies than its partnerships with companies like Comcast.

The Daily Dose is updated as of 7 a.m. ET. Some external links may require a subscription.