Top tech stories today: January 16, 2024

Is searching article by article too much trouble? We’ve rounded up the must-know global tech updates for January 16, 2024. Read on to see what’s trending today!

1. Microsoft’s new $20 Copilot Pro brings us new AI capabilities

The Copilot Pro subscription service was made available to consumers and is now available for $20 per month. Allows users to use AI features in Office applications, including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Subscribers can build their own Copilot GPT using the latest OpenAI model first. Microsoft 365 individual or home users can unlock Copilot on Mac, Windows and iPad for an additional $20 per month. Microsoft is also opening up Copilot for Microsoft 365 to businesses, removing the minimum seat limit, and most business users sign up for $30 a month. (The Verge)

2. Vision Pro demos will include scanning your glasses to identify your prescription

The Apple Vision Pro headset is about to be released, and Apple offered a demo in the Apple Store, covering multiple features and lasting 25 minutes. The purchase process includes scanning the face, preparing a vision prescription and buying a $149 optical implant. Apple has designed a more comfortable second strap and an attachment clip for the battery pack. Demand for the Vision Pro is expected to be brief, but stores will need to stock up. Apple plans to launch a second, cheaper headset and augmented reality glasses. Other competing companies include Meta’s collaboration with Ray-Bans and Xreal’s Air 2 Ultra AR glasses. (The Verge)  

3. US Customs clears redesigned Apple Watches amid Import ban dispute

US law enforcement allows Apple’s redesigned watches to bypass the import ban imposed by the ITC in the patent dispute with Masimo. The pause in the ban, initiated by the Court of Appeals, follows Apple’s claim that the redesign doesn’t infringe Masimo’s patents. The dispute revolves around alleged technology theft and patent infringement related to blood-oxygen reading capabilities. (Reuters)

4. Elon Musk’s X receives money transmitter license in Utah

Elon Musk’s social media platform X, formerly Twitter, obtains a money-transmitter license in Utah, becoming the 15th U.S. state to grant approval. This move aligns with X’s exploration of payment features, aiming to diversify beyond digital advertising. (Reuters)

5. Apple offers iPhone 15 at rare discount in China as competition intensifies

Amid increasing competition in China’s smartphone market, Apple initiates rare discounts, cutting iPhone prices by up to 5% in a Lunar New Year promotion. Sales of the iPhone 15 series face challenges from local rivals, including Huawei and Xiaomi, leading to a drop in Chinese iPhone sales. (Reuters)

6. CEOs fear for their firms in pre-Davos survey as AI, climate risks rise

PwC’s pre-Davos survey reveals 45% of global CEOs fear their businesses won’t survive a decade without significant changes, citing concerns about generative AI and climate disruption. Environmental focus grows, with 40% willing to accept lower returns for climate-friendly investments. Optimism about global growth contrasts with revenue growth caution. (Reuters)

7. South Korea’s Yoon pledges to extend tax benefits for chip investments

South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol pledges to extend tax credits for semiconductor investments, aiming to boost employment and talent. Plans include a mega chip cluster, anticipating significant investments and job creation. Samsung commits $230 billion to strengthen chipmaking capabilities. (Reuters)


Cassie Gong

Cassie is a news reporter at BTW media focusing on company profiles, interviews, podcasts, networking, sustainability, and AI. She graduated from Newcastle University, UK with a Master’s degree in Translating & Interpreting and now works in London and Hangzhou. Send tips to

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