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Google Maps blamed for congested Jakarta alleyways – The Jakarta Post

Yoga Adiwinarto, country director for the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy in Indonesia, has urged Google to stop recommending Jakarta alleyways in its special motorbike route feature on Google Maps.

“The function of these kampong roads is different from that of main roads. The former are meant to accommodate pedestrians and provide residents with public space,” he said.

According to a report by The Jakarta Post, residents of several neighbourhoods in the city have complained about the increasing number of motorcyclists passing through their alleyways, which often only have the width of an adult’s outstretched arms.

Some neighbourhoods even ban motorcyclists from entering their alleyways; some would stop passing motorcyclists to warn them against endangering children.

Motorcyclists have been following the route as recommended by Google Maps in order to avoid congestion on main roads.

Alphabet’s life-science unit Verily raises US$1B – Dealstreet Asia

Alphabet Inc’s life sciences division Verily has announced a US$1 billion investment round led by private equity firm Silver Lake, Dealstreet Asia reported.

The funding round also included the participation of Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan.

The company plans to use the new funding to support acquisitions and partnerships as well as to advance business strategies.

Starting off as a research and development unit in Google, Verily received a US$800 million investment from Temasek in 2017.

The company is working on several projects with pharmaceutical companies to research on surgical robots and develop retina scan technology for eye diseases detection.

Also Read: Google wraps up the year with Singapore’s trending list for the past year

China’s lunar probe successfully landed on the far side of the moon – Xinhua, SCMP

The China National Space Administration announced that the country’s lunar probe Change’e-4 has touched down on the far side of the moon on Thursday, becoming the first spacecraft soft-landing on the moon’s uncharted side, which was never visible from Earth.

According to a report by Xinhua, the probe consists of a lander and a rover.

An earlier report by South China Morning Post said that the lunar probe will be used for “astronomical observation using low-frequency radio, surveying the terrain and landforms, detecting the mineral composition and shallow lunar surface structure, and measuring neutron radiation and neutral atoms.”

Apple’s stock drops 38 per cent in 90 days – TechCrunch

Apple’s stock was down more than nine per cent overnight and continued its downward trend in trading in the morning, TechCrunch reported.

The company has been dropping a total of 38 per cent since October, leading it to halt trading on Thursday to provide lower guidance for upcoming trading.

The downward trend is attributed to the slowdown of iPhone sales, which D. A. Davidson senior analyst Tom Forte dubbed as “surprising” though “not unexpected.”

“We knew that iPhone unit sales were weak, but just not how weak,” he said.

Image Credit: Yulia Agnis on Unsplash