Issue 1583 - Thursday 7th April, 2022

In Today's Issue

The News

Australian startup Fast raised $165m in 2019, is now dead

Australian-led startup Fast has shat the bed and no longer exists. The premise of the business was to "provide online shoppers with a single payment profile which could be used, instantly, across participating e-commerce retailers", copying Amazon's 1-Click ordering process now that Amazon's patent expired. They raised over $165m from investors (led by eCommerce giant Stripe) since 2019, but only managed $790,000 revenue last year. Fast was spending $10,000,000 a month and hired 400 employees in 2021. In a tweet announcing the closure, founder Domm Holland said that "sometimes trailblazers don't make it all the way to the mountaintop" as his staff were shown the door.

Telstra kicks off network wide SMS spam filtering

Telstra and Telstra MVNO customers should get a welcome reduction in the number of nonsense spam SMS hitting their phones, as they've turned on network wide filtering after a successful 3-month trial with their employees. The "automatic machine scanning picks out suspicious content such as malicious links and combines this with other patterns and characteristics like the time, sender, the number of messages sent and the recipient". You can opt out by sending an SMS to 0438214682 with the words FILTER OFF. I've had heaps of these lately and they're very annoying, good to see Telstra do something about it.

Greens EV plan, Meta wants to be like Roblox, Amazon's Starlink competitor, Jack Dorsey reflects on the pain he's caused us, Royal Mint ordered to make an NFT

Something I Saw On The Internet

Aussie Broadband's AUSNOG 2021 presentation is a nice glimpse into the joy and pain of running a large ISP

AUSNOG 2021 is taking place right now (I know it's 2022, go whinge at AUSNOG) which means lots of juicy network related info from Phil Britt - the boss of Aussie Broadband. His presentation this year (PDF) detailed their massive project to roll their own fibre network around the country and hooking it up to all 121 of NBN's POIs. It's fascinating to see such a large telco (closing in on the 4th biggest ISP in Australia) justify why they do the things they do. Lots of cool photos and maps in the presentation too. Thank you Brody for sharing this with me and the other nerds on The Sizzle's Slack channel!


The End

📻 Ramble - Silverchair

😎 The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon.

💬 Checked out the paid subscriber only forum? It's a tidy little place to discuss tech with like minded Aussies.

👋 Forums not your thing? The Sizzle has a Slack group you can procrastinate in and chat with other nerds bored at work.

💳 Paid subscriber looking to manage your billing info or change email address? Visit the customer portal.

📚 Browse The Sizzle Archive. A few issues are missing and it's not searchable, but it's better than nothing.

Affiliate Links

Fastmail. Email where you are the customer, not the product. Loads of features, smooth no-nonsense web interface, plus calendar and contact hosting. They've been around for 20 years and I've been a customer for over 10. Use this link and get 10% off your first year and I get around 30c/month you remain a customer.

Aussie Broadband. Great customer service and responsive to community needs (they have an "unofficial" Discord, they publish their CVC!). I've been a customer since 2017 and don't plan on going anywhere. Use my referral code (1001031) to get $50 credit when signing up for an NBN plan and I get $50 credit towards my next bill.

Vultr. All my Australian-based hosting needs (3x VPSes) are handled by Vultr. Easy to use admin interface, automatic backups, built-in firewall, custom ISO support and reasonable prices. Sign up with my link and score US$100 credit. I get US$35 credit if you're active for 14+ days and use at least US$35.

Always Was, Always Will Be Aboriginal Land

The Sizzle is created on Wathaurong land and acknowledges the traditional owners of country throughout Australia, recognising their continuing connection to land, water and community. I pay my respect to them and their cultures and to elders both past and present.