WhatsApp is rolling out support for voice and video calling to its desktop app for Mac and Windows. For now it will only support one-to-one calls, but that it will be expanding this feature to include group voice and video calls “in the future.” Video calls work “seamlessly” for both portrait and landscape orientation, and the desktop client is “set to be always on top so you never lose your video chats in a browser tab or stack of open windows,” the firm said, which began testing the feature with a small group of users on desktop late last year.
Okta is buying cloud identity startup Auth0 for $6.5 billion. It’s a substantial amount of money for one identity and access management (IAM) company to pay to buy another, similar entity. But the deal ultimately brings together two companies that come at identity from different sides of the market — and as such could be the beginning of a beautiful identity friendship. On a simple level, Okta delivers identity and access management (IAM) to companies who use the service to provide single-sign-on access for employees to a variety of cloud services — think Gmail, Salesforce, Slack and Workday. Meanwhile, Auth0 is a developer tool providing coders with easy API access to single-sign-on functionality. With just a couple of lines of code, the developer can deliver IAM tooling without having to build it themselves. Auth0 will operate as an independent unit inside of Okta as they look for paths to integration in the coming months.
While IBM's primary cloud message over the past few years has been about multi-cloud, it has continued to offer its own public cloud and has targeted it at complex enterprise workloads that typically run on mainframes or other systems. The new platform IBM Cloud Satellite is intended as an extension of the IBM Public Cloud that can run inside the customer's data center or out at the edge. Like IBM's other hybrid cloud offerings, underneath the hood IBM Cloud Satellite runs on Red Hat OpenShift, the Kubernetes management environment. It works by adding the mechanism of a Location that signifies an instance of IBM Public Cloud outside IBM's data centers.
Airbyte, an open-source data integration platform, today announced that it has raised a $5.2 million seed funding round. Airbyte is geared toward data engineering, without the specific industry focus of its early incarnation, but it offers both a graphical UI for building connectors, as well as APIs for developers to hook into. Even for a company that specializes in building these connectors, the complexity will quickly outpace its ability to keep up, so the team decided on building Airbyte as an open-source company. The team also argues that while there are companies like Fivetran that focus on data integration, a lot of customers end up with use cases that aren’t supported by Airbyte’s closed-source competitors and that they had to build themselves from the ground up.
Xage, a security startup that has been building a solution to help protect these hard-to-secure operations, announced a Zero Trust remote access cloud solution. This involves controlling access device by device and person by person by determining who can do what based on them authenticating themselves and proving who they are. It doesn’t rely on knowledge of a device password or a VPN zone password. The solution goes further with a secure traversal tunnel, which relies on a tamper-proof certificate to prevent hackers from getting from the operations side of the house — whether that’s a utility grid, water supply or oil and gas pipeline — to the IT side where they could then begin to muck about with the operational technology.
Microsoft is making Power Automate Desktop, its enterprise-level tool for creating automated desktop-centric workflows, available to all Windows 10 users for free. Power Automate Desktop is what Microsoft calls its “attended Robotic Process Automation” solution, but you can think of it as a macro recorder on steroids. It comes with 370 prebuilt actions that help you build flows across different applications, but its real power is in letting you build your own scripts to automate repetitive and time-consuming tasks. Users who want to give Power Automate Desktop a try can now download it from Microsoft, but in the coming weeks, it’ll become part of Microsoft’s Insider Builds for Windows 10 and then eventually become a built-in part of Windows 10, all the way down to the standard Windows Home version.
BrioHR, which is building human resources (HR) software for Southeast Asia, has raised $1.3M. BrioHR competes with local companies that are more focused on providing single solutions, like payroll management. The startup is itself still building out its regional tooling, providing payroll support in only a handful of countries. It intends to expand that service to new countries this year, and be everywhere with its payroll product in two to three years.
Google Workspace is launching a large update that touches everything from your calendar to Google Meet and how you can use Workspace with Google Assistant. Useful new feature for workers that split time between home and the office is support for recurring out-of-office entries and segmentable working hours, as well as a new event type, Focus Time, to help you minimize distractions. Location indicators across Google Workspace will allow users to share which days they will be working from home and which days they will be in the office. For frontline workers, Google is adding something it calls Google Workspace Frontline, with new features for this group of users, and it is also making it easier for users to build custom AppSheet apps from Google Sheets and Drive, so that frontline workers can digitize and streamline their work, whether it’s collecting data in the field, reporting safety risks, or managing customer requests.