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Re/wind: Tim Cook Comes Out, Looking Back At Code/Mobile and More

Apple CEO Tim Cook publicly confirmed that he identifies as gay, revisiting our Code/Mobile conference, and more.

Vjeran Pavic

Hi there!

The week is over! Isn’t that great? Anyway, if you missed some of the big headlines, here’s what we were talking about over at Re/code:

  1. In an essay for Bloomberg Businessweek, Apple CEO Tim Cook publicly confirmed that he identifies as gay. His piece, a bold and forceful statement, took a lot of folks by surprise, which maybe it shouldn’t have if you know much about Cook’s background. Re/code co-executive editor Kara Swisher penned her own piece on the announcement, saying how nice it is “to finally be able to say hello to the entire man.” In other Apple news, San Francisco elites fawned over design guru Jony Ive at an SFMOMA event on Thursday, and RacoWireless’s John Horn penned a guest column on the problems facing Apple’s “smart home” platform, HomeKit.
  2. On Monday and Tuesday, a group of tech obsessives and industry figures descended on Half Moon Bay, Calif., for our inaugural Code/Mobile conference, which focused on (what else?) mobile technology. Guests included T-Mobile CEO John Legere, YouTube star Michelle Phan, the co-founders of Instagram, reality TV empress Kim Kardashian West, and many more. For complete details of our event coverage (including videos, liveblogs and more), click here.
  3. Last weekend, it was revealed that CVS and Rite Aid wouldn’t be accepting Apple Pay, with reports suggesting that a consortium of retailers (including the two drugstore chains) called MCX was working a competitor to the mobile payments service. On Wednesday, MCX disclosed that its Apple Pay rival, CurrentC, has already been hacked. Lol.
  4. Hey, what’s going on with Twitter? The company demoted its Product VP Daniel Graf, a big hire they stole away from Google, and two senior Twitter executives also announced they would be leaving. Ominous signs for CEO Dick Costolo. Meanwhile, Twitter unveiled a partnership with IBM whereby all tweets will now be integrated into the cloud for all eternity.
  5. Spin-class enthusiasts of the world, rejoice! The cycling-centric fitness app Strava raised a hefty $18.5 million, in a funding round led by Sequoia Capital, with participation from some other big VC hitters.
  6. Speaking of fitness, Microsoft announced its venture into the health market with the Microsoft Band, a wearable that went on sale Thursday for $199. Relatedly, Google made its Android-based fitness app Google Fit available to download on Tuesday.
  7. The Federal Trade Commission filed suit against AT&T for misleading customers with its unlimited-data plans. The FTC alleges that the company slowed the speeds of its unlimited-data subscribers, which kind of defeats the purpose of an unlimited-data plan. Elsewhere in regulation, the FCC publicly began its push for Internet TV regulation with a widely circulated letter from FCC Commissioner Tom Wheeler on Tuesday.
  8. San Francisco-based Benchmark Capital took a sweat-equity stake in Tinder, making Benchmark partner Matt Cohler a Tinder board member in exchange for a “small stake” in the maker of the dating app.
  9. Okay, this is a fun one: Turn your face into an emoji and bother your friends with the new Bitstrips app, released on Wednesday, concurrent with an announcement that Bitstrips raised $8 million in a funding round led by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.
  10. Xiaomi is the biggest cellphone maker you’ve probably never heard of. Figures released this week show that the company is the third-biggest smartphone maker in the world, after Apple and Samsung.

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