Good morning, Austin! We have scrolled the internet to bring you the latest in technology news. Here’s what’s happening:
Apple slashes App Store affiliate commission
In an apparent move to retain more profit from apps and in-app purchases, Apple is slashing the commission its link affiliates get from 7 percent to 2.5 percent.
The change will be implemented May 1, and from then on, link affiliates will claim a smaller percentage of earnings from their apps.
AppleInsider, which also has an iTunes app, predicted the cut will greatly impact the small- to mid-sized websites that offer news content and reviews.
In a story on the move, TechCrunch warns that if Apple drastically cuts this revenue stream, the company could end up alienating people writing for those sites. And it could also indicate that some bigger App Store changes are coming soon.
Google’s self-driving cars will finally take passengers
After almost a decade of research, Google says its self-driving car technology is ready for passengers.
Waymo, the search giant's autonomous car company, will begin taking applications today from Phoenix-area residents who want to be among the hundreds of riders testing out an expanded fleet of Chrysler Pacifica Plug-In Hybrid minivans outfitted with Waymo's autonomous car sensors.
The company has already tested these vehicles, plus other makes and models, on public roads, but only with its employees and contractors as testers.
By opening the doors to the general public with a larger fleet, Waymo will get data on how people experience and use self-driving cars -- and clues on ways to generate revenue from the technology.
Atlassian’s HipChat platform has been hacked
Atlassian's workplace chat platform HipChat was hacked over the weekend, the company has announced in a security notice.
The incident affected a server in the HipChat Cloud web tier, and for a small number of instances, there's evidence messages and content in rooms may have been accessed.
For all instances, the attacker may have accessed user account information like names, email addresses and hashed passwords. Room metadata (including room name and room topic) may have also been accessed.
In a blog post, Ganesh Krishnan, Atlassian’s chief security officer, wrote: “We are confident we have isolated the affected systems and closed any unauthorized access.”
Australian-based Atlassian has a significant presence in Austin, where it has a 75,000-square-foot office downtown and employs workers in engineering, marketing and customer support.
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