BMW Launches Its Largest SUV Yet

BMW has launched its largest SUV ever, entering one of the market’s most profitable segments, long dominated by Mercedes, Audi and Cadillac. The German automaker will finally have a full-size SUV of its own when the BMW X7 arrives in showrooms in April. With an extra row of seating and more elbow room than its bestselling mid-size X5 utility vehicle, the X7 will capitalize on a consumer preference for larger vehicles. U.S. sales of BMW’s crossovers and SUVs rose 21% last year, surpassing sedan sales for the first time ever. “The question we always need to consider when introducing a new model is whether it will cannibalize sales from other models in the lineup or bring new conquest customers from …

Intel Lays Off Hundreds of Tech Administrators

Intel Corp. is laying off hundreds of information technology administrators this week, according to The Oregonian. These 2019 layoffs may be the tech giant’s most substantial cutbacks since 2016, when it cut about 12,000 jobs in an effort to save $1.4 billion annually. The layoffs may have more to do with how the corporation plans to manage internal technical systems than simply cutting costs, according to sources that spoke with The Oregonian. And the job cuts won’t only impact workers in Oregon, though the layoffs do include some of the 20,000 employees in The Beaver State. Cuts will also impact workers in other parts of the U.S., including Costa Rica, where Intel operates a major administrative facility. At the end …

Why Apple Had to Cancel Its AirPower Charging Pad

There’s bad news for Apple fans who have been waiting 18 months to find out when they could purchase an AirPower wireless charger. Apple announced on Friday that it is cancelling plans to release an AirPower charging pad, citing concerns the product won’t live up Apple’s “high standards.” “After much effort, we’ve concluded AirPower will not achieve our high standards and we have cancelled the project. We apologize to those customers who were looking forward to this launch. We continue to believe that the future is wireless and are committed to push the wireless experience forward,” Dan Riccio, Apple’s senior vice president of hardware engineering, said in a statement to Fortune. AirPower was first teased at Apple’s iPhone X event …

Attorney General William Barr Says Mueller Report Will Be Released by ‘Mid-April’

Attorney General William Barr told the House and Senate Judiciary Committees Friday that the Department of Justice is “well along” with redactions of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report and will have it ready for release by “mid-April, if not sooner,” CNN reports. The news comes just as Democrats increased pressure for a full release of the report, threatening a subpoena if Barr does not meet their Tuesday deadline. The Mueller report was delivered to the DOJ last Friday, but its contents remain confidential. Barr sent a four-page summary of the investigation to Congress–an outline House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called “condescending” and “arrogant,” according to MarketWatch–but many questions remain unanswered. Barr’s summary says Mueller found no collusion between the Trump campaign …

Brainstorm Health: Xarelto TV Ads, Paid for Staying in Bed, Bristol Myers Celgene Deal

Happy Friday, readers! I’m running around prepping for our upcoming Brainstorm Health conference (hey, I’ve mentioned that’s happening next week and is going to be awesome, right?) so it’ll have to be a short one this beautiful Friday afternoon. But here’s something worth noting–Johnson & Johnson is reportedly getting ahead of the regulatory curve to become the first drug company in the U.S. to spell out a treatment’s price in direct-to-consumer television ads, for the blood thinner . The Trump administration has been preparing rules along these lines to mandate the disclosures in pharma ads. J&J is also addressing one of the main criticisms of the proposed rules–that list prices are often substantially different from what patients actually pay for …

Thanks to the Mueller Report, Fox News Is Getting a Ratings Boost

Fox News has a lock on prime-time ratings–at least, for now. As Variety notes, the network has experienced an uptick in prime-time viewership in the days since special counsel Robert Mueller delivered his report on the Russia investigation. The network’s improved numbers come after several competitive months in the cable-news arena, where Fox News and MSNBC have been battling for supremacy. As of today, Fox is in the lead, with both Sean Hannity’s 9 p.m. program, Hannity, and Tucker Carlson’s 8 p.m. show, Tucker Carlson Tonight, gaining over its rivals. On Wednesday, Variety notes, Hannity earned 4.3 million viewers; that’s more than a million more than it averaged in January. That same night, Tucker Carlson Tonight–which faced a boycott call …

Lyft Rises 9% on First Day of Trading for a Market Cap of $26.5 Billion

Lyft’s long-awaited debut on a U.S. stock exchange proved to be a success Friday, with the stock closing up 8.7% at $78.29 a share, giving the ride-hailing pioneer a $26.6 billion valuation after its first day of trading and auguring a warm welcome for other tech decacorns that have shunned the IPO pipeline for years. Although the company reported a 2018 net loss of nearly a billion dollars, investors clamored for a piece of the Lyft IPO, with underwriters reporting demand for the stock that was 20 times larger than the shares available, the Wall Street Journal said. Lyft’s shares began trading around 11:55 a.m. ET, opening at $87.24 a share, or 21% above its offering price of $72 a …

Scientists Want to Pay You $19,000 to Stay in Bed 2 Months. Here’s Why

Scientists are looking for women ages 24-55 willing to stay in bed for 60 days in order to determine how weightlessness affects the human body–and they’re willing to pay you 16,500 euros (around $18,522) to do it. When astronauts are in space, the weightlessness caused by microgravity can cause changes to human’s bodies that can ultimately lead to bones and muscles breaking down and fluid moving toward a person’s head, according to NASA. Scientists at the German Aerospace Center have been commissioned by the European Space Agency and NASA to conduct a study on how they can counteract the effect of weightlessness. Instead of floating around in a weightless environment, instead participants will stay in bed, simulating the effects caused …

A Once-Popular Motorcycle League Seeks A Multi-Million Dollar Resurgence

A 65-year-old sports league that’s fallen into obscurity is funneling millions of dollars into rebuilding its loyal and lucrative fan following. American Flat Track, the series that features competitors sliding their motorcycles upwards of 140 mph around a dirt oval, opened its third season in Daytona, Fla., on Thursday with hopes of creating a household name. “We will do whatever we need to do to expand the footprint, to expand the reach, of the sport,” CEO Michael Lock told Fortune. Interest the series, which began in 1954 under the name AMA Pro Racing, waned over the last several decades with the rise of other styles of motorcycle racing. Lock, a former Ducati chief executive, rebranded the series as American Flat …

Huawei: Hundred Billion Dollar Troll

The Financial Times reported earlier this week that Chinese telecom equipment manufacturing giant Huawei Technology has hired top-drawer Washington public relations group Burson Cohn & Wolfe to “help it make its case in the US following months of media and political scrutiny.” One wonders where those spin doctors were on Thursday when Huawei summoned global press to its headquarters in Shenzhen to trumpet its annual financial results. The headline Huawei hoped for–and in some instances received–was that the company’s 2018 sales surged nearly 20% to a record $107 billion despite U.S. government efforts to cast doubt on the security of its products. Profits leapt 25% to $8.8 billion. Very impressive. And yet most stories led with the in-your-face comments of …

Jeff Bezos’ Investigator Says Saudi Arabia Hacked Amazon CEO’s Phone Before Affair Exposé

The feud between Jeff Bezos and the National Enquirer took another stunning turn over the weekend when a personal investigator for the Amazon.com Inc. chief executive officer accused Saudi Arabia of accessing Bezos’ phone data before the tabloid exposed his extramarital affair. Gavin de Becker, a security consultant for Bezos, made his accusations in a 2000-plus-word post in the Daily Beast, which the news site labeled as “opinion.” The investigator gave no direct evidence to reinforce his allegations, which furthered a suggestion made by Bezos in February that the tabloid’s interest in his personal life could be linked to the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Enquirer parent American Media Inc. has offered an explanation with far less political intrigue: …

Donald Trump’s ‘Deal of the Century’ Might Be Dead

President Donald Trump was already struggling to rally Arab support for a long-awaited Middle East peace plan he’s dubbed the “deal of the century.” His latest move in support of Israel may make that plan dead on arrival. By recognizing Israeli sovereignty over the long-disputed Golan Heights, seized from Syria in the 1967 Six Day War, Trump shoved Arab allies he’s counting on to back his peace initiative into a corner. The Golan decision came after he had already angered much of the Arab world by moving the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, and cutting off funding for a United Nations agency helping Palestinian refugees. Saudi Arabia and Egypt are unlikely to throw their weight behind the proposal being …

Brainstorm Health: Health Care AI, Quarterly Biotech Reports, Novartis Deal

Happy Monday, readers. I’m on my way to the Fortune Brainstorm Health conference in San Diego, where our ridiculously stacked speaker set will address, well, a good chunk of things worth addressing in the digital health, biopharma, and public health spheres. A study published in the journal Nature Digital Medicine last week just happens to happily coincide with our Southern California get together. It raises one the most important questions in this nascent era of algorithmic medicine–when are AI and big data analytics most effective in real world medicine? The authors propose some theories following an extensive, and unique, collaboration between AI researchers and medical professionals at Stanford and Utah’s Intermountain LDS Hospital system, the MIT Technology Review reports. In …

From ‘Us’ to Busts: 5 Lessons Learned From a Bonkers Box Office Weekend

It’s been a strange few months at the box office: After a record-setting 2018, Hollywood spent the early part of this year nervously watching the numbers drop, and enduring the crash-and-burn releases of such franchise entries as The Lego Movie 2 and Happy Death Day 2 U, both of which underperformed. But a run of recent hits, including Us and Captain Marvel, have not only brought back audiences, they’ve also challenged some of the running conventional wisdom. Here are some key takeaways from a year that’s been deviating from the norm. 1. Halloween is now a year-round holiday. In February 2017, writer-director Jordan Peele’s social-issue shocker Get Out opened at more than $33 million–a remarkable figure for a mid-winter fright-flick. …

The 2020 Census Will Be Heading Your Way—With or Without That Citizenship Question

The U.S. Census Bureau is on schedule to start the 2020 count and is prepared for either outcome of the Supreme Court’s looming decision on whether the Constitution lets the Trump administration add a question asking whether people are American citizens. Test surveys to gauge whether there’s an aversion to the citizenship question and help gauge Census staffing needs are already being mailed out, with half of those 480,000 questionnaires including the contested query and the rest omitting it, Albert E. Fontenot Jr., associate director for decennial census programs, told reporters Monday in Washington. Justices are scheduled to hear arguments on April 23 and will rule by the end of June. “We have film that will be prepared for our …

Woman Who Falsely Accused 15 Men Of Rape Jailed For Ten Years

Central News A woman has been handed a 10 year jail sentence after making several false rape allegations against a series of men. 27-year-old Jemma Beale, from west London, was found guilty of perverting the course of justice and perjury as she falsely accused 15 men of sexual assault. One of these men was jailed for two years, while another fled the country after the allegations were made. As reported by the MailOnline, Beale appeared at the Old Bailey today calling on senior judges to overturn the conviction, protesting her innocence. The three judges however dismissed the appeal, sending Beale back to prison. Lady Justice Hallett, one of England’s most senior female judges, told the court: This case went far further …