8th August 2022
Bite-sized business news from the UK and beyond
Good morning Over the weekend the English Premier League returned celebrating its 30th anniversary this season. By most metrics, the Premier League has outpaced all other football leagues when it comes to revenues generated, viewership and the transfer market.
Back in 1992 Sky Sports outbid ITV to win exclusive rights for five year deal worth £304m. The latest broadcasting deal was worth £5.1bn.
- Employers put the brakes on hiring
- Amazon takes further steps to smarten up your home
Employers put the brakes on hiring
Other stories to keep you in the loop
- UK house prices fall for first time since June 2021, says Halifax
- Energy bills: Charities warn people against not paying
- Liz Truss accused of second U-turn over cost of living ‘handouts’
- US job growth surges cooling recession fears
- Asda and Deliveroo partner up for rapid grocery delivery roll-out
- Next swoops for stake in struggling lifestyle retailer Joules
- Hargreaves Lansdown to launch new funds as profits tumble
- Cambridge Satchel Company sold to textiles firm
Amazon takes further steps to smarten up your home
On Friday Amazon announced it would buy iRobot, the maker of the Roomba vacuum and other home robots, for $1.7bn. iRobot products surged in popularity early in the pandemic as people looked to keep their homes tidy, but sales have dropped since.
What’s behind the move?
The acquisition is a major step in Amazon’s goal of dominating home robotics (see Alexa voice software, Echo smart speakers and Ring doorbells which is bought in 2018).
Just like Apple locks you into their ecosystem with tech that works together seamlessly, Amazon is striving to do the same with the things in your home—think of your Roomba starting to vacuum when your Ring detects you’ve left the house.
Amazon’s own household robot assistant Astro, hasn’t taken off yet. iRobot’s products are somewhat of a backup plan.
Why it matters: Amazon is expanding the range of products that can collect your data. The Roomba, with its array of sensors and cameras that map every inch of your house, will add to that information arsenal. But critics are worried about the personal data you’ll give up in the process.
Stat of the day
20% of British nightclubs have closed since the start of the pandemic
Interesting links from around the web