Bitcoin’s Birthday, Libra Challenges in Europe, and Trump vs. Amazon
Microsoft suspected of corruption in the Pentagon’s multi-billion dollar tender
Microsoft won a 10-year contract with the Pentagon for the development of cloud technology and military infrastructure for $ 10 billion, although Amazon was considered the favorite of the race. A few days later, the Task & Purpose portal, dedicated to military theme, published excerpts from the biography of former Pentagon chief James Mattis, “Holding The Line: Inside Trump’s Pentagon with Secretary Mattis”. The book was written by Guy Snodgrass, who was a speechwriter for Mattis. It says that in the summer of 2018, Donald Trump ordered Mattis to “kick” Amazon out of the fight for a $ 10 billion contract, but the former defense secretary refused. And in February 2019, Mattis resigned.
In July 2019, CNN reported that Oracle Vice President Kenneth Gluck wrote a letter to the U.S. Presidential Administration stating that there was a conspiracy to “create a ten-year monopoly” for Amazon to provide the US Department of Defense with cloud solutions. In addition, Trump is known for his personal feud with Amazon creator Jeff Bezos. Amazon itself is clearly hinting that the tender was unfair.
“Amazon Web Services is an obvious leader in cloud computing, and if the decision was made based solely on evaluating competitive offers, then it would obviously be different,” Amazon said in a statement.
Bitcoin is 11 years old
Bitcoin was born in the midst of the global financial crisis of 2008–2009. On October 31, 2008, the mysterious creator of the first cryptocurrency, known by the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto, published White Paper on the architecture of Bitcoin. A narrow circle of cryptographers and developers received a document, which described the structure and functioning of the world’s first cryptocurrency. The paper on the creation of a digital peer-to-peer cash system said:
“A purely peer-to-peer version of electronic cash would allow online payments to be sent directly from one party to another without going through a financial institution.”
The first block in the bitcoin network was mined on January 3, 2009 — this date is considered the second birthday of cryptocurrency. The genesis block of bitcoin contains a symbolic message from Satoshi Nakamoto: the headline for an article from The Times — “Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks”. Thus, the creator of the cryptocurrency hinted that Bitcoin is a response to financial instability, signaling a drop in confidence in banks and government institutions.
China launched the world’s largest 5G network
Three state-owned telecom operators in China, China Mobile, China Telecom and China Unicom, now offer tariff plans for 5G at 128 yuan ($ 18) with 30 GB of data per month included. According to Xinhua, the Chinese state-owned news agency, 5G commercial services are now available in 50 cities, including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen. About 12,000 base stations have been activated in Shanghai to support 5G coverage. According to Bernstein Research, China’s 5G network is the largest.
Jefferies analysts predict that by 2020 there will be 110 million 5G users in China — about 7% of the country’s population.
Chinese President calls for speeding up blockchain implementation in China
Xi Jinping, speaking at a seminar in the Politburo of the Central Committee of the People’s Republic of China on October 24, noted China’s achievements in the blockchain industry and called for strengthening the country’s position, which should “take the lead in the emerging blockchain industry.” According to Xi, the country needs to accelerate the blockchain research, which, in turn, will give China more opportunities to establish rules and standards at the international level.
After a statement by the PRC chairman, there was a sharp surge in requests for the word “blockchain” in Chinese search engines and social networks. Requests for blockchain-related words soared in the Chinese search engine Baidu and the WeChat messaging app. In Baidu, the number of searches for the term “blockchain” for one day on October 25 reached 72,049 times, which is 1382.79% higher than October 24.
Media: five EU countries agree to confront Libra
On October 28, in Brussels, a closed meeting of deputy finance ministers of the EU member states was held, at which they discussed need for common position regarding the Libra stablecoin. According to Politico Europe, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the Netherlands have agreed to counter Libra’s entry into the European market. The group also intends to increase pressure on Facebook and members of the Libra Association to force them to abandon the project.
According to the publication, the European Commission is discussing a complete ban on Libra, but it has not yet been decided how this will be legislatively executed. France, Germany and Italy have already proposed banning Libra at the G7 meeting in mid-October. It is now expected that in December, European officials will publish a statement saying that it is impossible to allow Libra to enter the European market until the EU authorities find a way to regulate this asset.