Big layoffs in Microsoft’s phone business and the New York Stock Exchange suffers its longest closure caused by a computer glitch ever.
MELISSA We’ll start with the tech top three, the stories you need to know this week
1. Microsoft cuts 7,800 jobs Microsoft’s acquisition of Nokia’s phone business has proven to be a bad- and very costly- deal.
Microsoft is writing off $7.6 billion, that’s almost the entire cost of the deal, and cutting up to 7,800 jobs. Those cuts are on top of the 18,000 layoffs it announced last year.
Microsoft plans to spend most of its effort building a Windows ecosystem that includes its own devices, de-emphasizing Microsoft-brand phonesCEO Satya Nadella said in an email to employees announcing the changes.
2. NYSE halts trading The New York Stock Exchange suffered its biggest outage in more than a decade on Wednesday when a technical glitch forced it to halt trading for nearly four hours.
Problems began in the morning and the exchange suspended all trading around lunchtime. It quickly ruled out a cyberattack and then on Thursday said an incompatibility with a software update and attempt to fix it were the cause of the glitch.
3. Facebook updates news feed Facebook will now let you choose which friends and pages you see at the top of your news feed. The “see first” tool lets you select what posts you want to come up first. These posts can be from friends or pages and will have a star in the top right corner, so don’t forget to select World Tech Update guys. Everything else will show up after your “see-first” posts. The tool is available for people who use iOS devices, with Android and desktop users getting the feature in the coming weeks.
In Focus: Solar plane reaches Hawaii In focus this week, the pilot of a plane powered entirely by the sun has broken the world record for the longest solo flight.
Andre Borschberg landed Solar Impulse 2 in Hawaii after flying nonstop for five days and five nights from Japan. He spent nearly 118 hours flying over the Pacific Ocean in this tiny cockpit, just 3.8 cubic meters in size.
This was the longest and most difficult part of the Solar Impulse 2’s attempt to fly around the world without a drop of fuel.
The plane is covered with 17,000 thin solar panels that provide the electrical power to keep it aloft. That, combined with its light weight, mean it can technically stay aloft much longer - the real obstacle to constant flight is the human pilot.
The plane took off in May from China to Hawaii, but bad weather forced it to stop in Japan. After being delayed for over a month, Borschberg took off from Nagoya, Japan at the end of June and landed in Hawaii on July 3rd.
The next leg of the journey will be a four-day flight to Phoenix by Borschberg’s fellow pilot, Bertrand Piccard.
Solar Impulse 2’s journey continues from there to New York, Europe and Abu Dhabi, where the trip began in early March.
Solar Impulse has already set several aviation milestones in Europe, including the first ever solar-powered night flight in 2010, the first international solar flight in 2011 and the first intercontinental solar flight in 2012.