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Recode Daily: Britain makes its Brexit breakup official

Plus: Pizza robots, and Netflix-and-kill with standup comics.

A demonstrator wearing a mask depicting Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May protests against the U.K.’s triggering of Article 50, outside the Houses of Parliament in central London on March 29, 2017.
Justin Tallis / AFP / Getty Images

In one of the most significant steps by a British leader since WWII, Prime Minister Theresa May formally began Britain’s divorce from the European Union on Wednesday, raising thorny issues involved in untangling a four-decade relationship. [Stephen Castle / The New York Times]

Amazon is shutting down Quidsi, one of its largest-ever acquisitions, which runs six shopping sites, including Diapers.com, Soap.com and Wag.com. The shutdown will result in layoffs of 263 people. An Amazon spokesperson blamed the shutdown on profitability issues. [Jason Del Rey / Recode]

Robots will take over many tasks in fast food restaurants in the next 10 to 15 years, according to Yum Brands CEO Greg Creed. Pizza Hut, part of the Yum group, is already experimenting with an order-taking robot in Japan, and McDonald’s and Wendy’s are experimenting with order-taking kiosks. [Chantel McGee / CNBC]

Samsung unveiled its new Galaxy S8 smartphone yesterday, and the Verge’s Dieter Bohn called it “the nicest phone I’ve ever held.” It also signals how far Apple is behind. It may have pioneered the all-screen phone concept, but Samsung and others have gone further faster. Apple’s forthcoming iPhone 8 will likely answer all that, but for now this may be the best smartphone on the market. [Dan Frommer / Recode]

Email is a scrappy senior citizen, says Walt Mossberg, adding that there are lots of reasons email persists, even as faster and simpler forms of communication proliferate — new types of media channels rarely totally kill off old ones, even though everyone predicts they will. [Walt Mossberg / Recode]

Email is the future, says Inside CEO Jason Calacanis, noting that it’s better for journalism than Google or Facebook. On the latest episode of Recode Media with Peter Kafka, Calacanis says his company plans to offer more than 60 email newsletters by the end of the year. [Eric Johnson / Recode]

Top stories from Recode


Donald Trump has a new iPhone — so it looks like he isn’t boycotting Apple anymore. The president’s social media director shares that Trump has been tweeting from his new Apple device.

Pandora is in trouble, and Big Music is surprisingly sad about that.
The labels used to loathe the streaming music service. Now they love it. It may be too late.

Google is letting advertisers who bolted see which videos their ads could run on.
Google has faced advertiser angst over ads appearing alongside inappropriate content.

Domino’s is going to use sidewalk robots in Germany to deliver pizza.
No, you don’t have to tip a robot when it delivers your pizza.

The government just gave your ISP even more power. Here’s how to fight back.
It’s time to tunnel all home internet traffic through a proxy server.

This is cool

Netflix and kill
The rise of Netflix has aligned perfectly with the desire of standup comics to push beyond the boundaries of linear television, and the digital platform has effectively taken over the genre, with a rush of new comedy from Dave Chapelle, Amy Schumer, Mike Birbiglia, Sarah Silverman, Chris Rock and Jerry Seinfeld.
[Victor Luckerson / The Ringer]


This article originally appeared on Recode.net.

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