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Japan is going bonkers for cryptocurrency — but the country still loves cash

Japan has come to dominate the market for digital currency trading. Still, it is far more cash dependent than other countries. 

Japanese investors are going bananas for cryptocurrencies, but the country still has a love affair with paper money. 

Japan has become a big market for cryptocurrency trading. 40% of bitcoin trading from October to November was conducted in yen, according to a Nikkei report cited in a note by Masao Muraki, a global financial strategist at Deutsche Bank. The country was among the first to designate bitcoin as a legal tender and it has one of the most well-established and supportive regulatory environments for cryptocurrencies. 

Saudi Arabia is working on an official policy for bitcoin but a ban is unlikely

Saudi Arabian officials are working on the country's bitcoin policy, according to a top regulator.   A ban on cryptocurrencies is not likely. 

Regulators around the world are taking a closer look at cryptocurrencies. South Korea's ban on anonymous bitcoin trading accounts went into effect Tuesday while the US Securities and Exchange Commission halted a $600 million initial coin offering

But one country's regulators are taking a more laissez faire-approach to cryptocurrencies: Saudi Arabia. 

The Nintendo Switch is winning the attention of more and more game developers

A video game platform lives or dies by the amount of games available to play — and the PC, Sony PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch are leading the pack in terms of game developer interest. 

The data comes from a recent survey by the Game Developers Conference, which measured both the interest in working on these platforms from gaming developers, as well as the extent to which they're already developing for them.

As this chart by

How to take the best possible photo of the 'super blue blood moon' with your phone

On the morning of January 31, people on the West Coast of the US will be able to see a lunar eclipse that coincides with a supermoon and blue moon. Your phone isn't designed to take images of the moon, but you can take some steps to capture something other than a fuzzy yellow blur. The biggest key is stability.

There's a host of celestial lunar events happening tomorrow if you're up for some moonwatching.

There will be a particularly bright full moon that happens to be the second one of the month (a super blue moon), but that's not all.


Everything we know about iOS 12, the biggest software update coming to iPhones and iPads this year

Apple's big software update for iPhones and iPads may not be available until much later in the year, but reports already indicate there may not be major feature additions and overhauls for iOS 12.

Instead, Apple is expected to focus on security and performance improvements in iOS 12, according to Axios. Many of the major feature additions and upgrades Apple had planned may be delayed until 2019. 

Here's what we know about iOS 12 so far: 

iOS 11 was plagued by a number of security issues and other bugs, which made users consider reverting back to an older software version

Some of the 

The latest PlayStation 4 exclusive is a gorgeous throwback to a PlayStation 2 classic

The best game to launch in 2018 thus far is a game from over 10 years ago.

That game, of course, is "Shadow of the Colossus" on the PlayStation 4. 

When the game originally launched on PlayStation 2 way back in 2005, it endeared a legion of fans. That dedicated fanbase enabled Sony to successfully re-release "Shadow of the Colossus" on the PlayStation 3 in 2011.

And now, in 2018, "Shadow of the Colossus" is back once again — this time on the PlayStation 4. The latest iteration is a fully re-built game, with stunning 4K/HDR visuals. But what do you actually do in the game? What is it about? Here's the deal!

"Shadow of the Colossus" is a gorgeous, third-person action game. The game was originally developed by Sony's Japan Studio, led by a man named Fumito Ueda. It's part of a trilogy of games that are all exclusive to Sony's game consoles.

Ford is making a big change to its shuttle-bus service Chariot — and it could mean a huge new business opportunity (F)

Ford will shift Chariot's growth business to enterprise customers. The startup was acquired for $65 million in 2016. Enterprise customers are expressing more demand for Chariot's services.

When Ford bought Chariot, a San Francisco-based shuttle bus service, in 2016 for $65 billion, it looked like a nice start for the automaker and what could have been a series of smaller acquisitions — a contrast with some bigger dollar signs aimed at getting legacy automakers up to speed on new mobility models.

Ford's strategy was careful, while General Motors' was bolder — all-in, for example, GM had acquired Cruise Automation, a self-driving startup, for $1 billion.

Chariot emerged from Y Combinator, a startup incubator, and raised 

CNN is blaming Apple for a bug that spammed iPhone users with a barrage of the same push notifications (AAPL, TWX)

A glitch caused some iPhone users to repeatedly receive the same headline notification from CNN. CNN says it's Apple's problem.  

At about 5pm ET on Tuesday, numerous people with iPhones received an Apple News push notification with a CNN headline about the false missile alarm in Hawaii.

Then they got the notification again. And again.

Some people on Twitter claimed that they got repeated alerts for a period of about 10 minutes.

Did CNN hire the worker because I’ve gotten this same push notification over and over again for the past ten minutes

— Josh Billinson (@jbillinson) January 30, 2018


Dog-walking startup Wag got a whopping $300 million from SoftBank and hired a new CEO

Japanese telecom giant SoftBank has invested $300 million in dog-walking startup Wag.  Additionally, Hilary Schneider, who most recently led LifeLock through its $2.3 billion sale to Symantec in 2016, is taking over as Wag's CEO. Schneider is replacing Wag cofounder Josh Viner as CEO. However, Viner will stay involved with the company, as will his brother and cofounder Jon Viner.

Dog-walking-on-demand startup Wag is getting a new CEO and a big infusion of cash. 

On Tuesday, the company announced it's received a $300 million investment from Japanese telecom giant SoftBank. It also announced that veteran tech executive Hilary Schneider will be taking over as its CEO. 

Schneider, who most recently served as CEO of identity protection company

Amazon just revealed its $4 billion Spheres packed with a mini tropical forest — here's what it looks like inside (AMZN)

Amazon created a green paradise in its new Spheres structure in Downtown Seattle. Created to be the focal point of its Seattle HQ, Amazon spent $4 billion on bringing a mini tropical forest to live.

Amazon is showing off its green thumb.

The company just took the wraps off its newest downtown Seattle structure. Called The Spheres because of its bulbous shape, Amazon collected plants from greenhouses around the world to take home to Seattle.

Rivers, waterfalls, and towering green walls and meant to take employees into a headspace as serene as the tropical forest the foliage tries to replicate. Workers cluster in "treehouses" to work and collaborate, surrounded by natural beauty.

The Spheres can hold about 800 working Amazonians, who seem to be excited about the new building — its available slots are