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TL;DR

In a hurry? Here's our pick of the top news items of the week.

  • OpenAI previewed its voice generator, Voice Engine, acknowledging the risks of misuse. (NBC)

  • Disney's password-sharing crackdown for Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+ accounts will begin in June. (Variety)

  • Google is considering charging for AI-powered search in a big change to its business model. (Financial Times)

  • Meta will begin labeling a wider range of video, audio and image content as "Made with AI" starting in May. (Axios)

  • London is the top-searched destination for Summer travelers, based on Google Flight data, followed by New York, Paris and Tokyo. (Travel Weekly)

Audiences

  • Over 3 in 5 (64%) consumers with at least five video streaming services say it’s important to spend less on them in the next year. (Morning Consult)

  • In the US, just as many women play video games as men, but they tend to play in different gaming categories. (Deloitte)

  • The majority of Americans support LGBTQ+ Pride ads despite growing backlash against brands. (Forbes)

Platforms

  • Facebook has rolled out a new, consistent full-screen video player, expanding the app's TikTok-like vertical format. (Social Media Today)

  • Over half (52%) of Australian ad agencies regularly bought programmatic DOOH in 2023, up from 48% in 2022. (Bandt)

  • Spotify's prices will go up by $1 to $2 in five markets this month - the UK, Australia, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Ghana - and in the US later this year. (WSJ)

Content

  • Warner Bros. announced the fifth installment of “The Matrix” is in development. (Forbes)

  • The Iowa-LSU game became the most-watched women’s college basketball game on record with 16.1M viewers. (Disney)

  • A Nickelodeon cartoon about the dynamics of a multi-generational Latino family that lives together is now a feature film on Netflix. (Axios)

  • Many streaming services have begun shrinking their once-robust content libraries in order to pay smaller licensing fees, and the need for differentiation is stronger than ever. (CNBC)

Tech & AI

  • Apple has teams investigating a push into personal robotics, a field with the potential to become one of the company’s “next big things." (Bloomberg)

  • Microsoft and Quantinuum announced a major breakthrough in quantum error correction, as the team was able to run more than 14K experiments without a single error. (Tech Crunch)

  • Apple debuted “spatial” Personas for Vision Pro users to bring an added sense of collaboration to the headset. (Tech Crunch)

  • AI has become an important ingredient for the liquor industry as it evolves sales and marketing tactics, alcohol production, packaging design and how brands engage with consumers. (Fortune)

Location-based entertainment

  • AGM client One World Observatory is hosting a viewing of the eclipse from the highest point in the city. (USA Today)

  • Japanese animation “The Boy and the Heron” opened in mainland Chinese theaters and immediately topped the box office, earning $14M in just one day. (Variety)

  • "Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes" is tracking for a $54M-$61M opening at the US box office in May. (Deadline)

  • The average ticket price for a Broadway show reached an all-time high of $128 in the most recent full season. (Gothamist)

  • Jay-Z’s Made In America festival is canceled for the second year in a row. (AP)

Travel & hospitality

  • The hotel industry is experimenting with utilizing robotics in certain aspects of the guest experience, but, since humans are historically the main component of making hospitality...hospitable, replacing all their functions with robots can be complicated. (Hotel Dive)

  • Dave & Buster’s is focusing on improving their food offerings to improve their overall sales, which have been down for the last few years. (Restaurant Business)

  • 63% of Indians are planning to spend more on travel this year, the highest of any country. (Skift)

Gaming

  • Revenue from PC and console games grew 3% YoY in 2023, and 43 of the games released that year commanded 90% of new title revenue. (gamesindustrybiz)

  • Gen Z is embracing the retro games revival, with the topic amassing 6B views on TikTok. (The Guardian)

  • UGC game studio Voldex has acquired Roblox's Ultimate Football game in a multi-million-dollar deal. (PocketGamer)

  • The Final Fantasy 15 and Kingdom Hearts composer Yoko Shimomura was the first video game composer to be included in Classic FM’s Hall of Fame. (gamerant)

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