TechCrunch

2018-02-20 18:47    2018-02-20 18:58

Mixer, Microsoft’s Twitch competitor, adds game sales

Twitch has long since allowed its streamers to generate revenue from their channels through things like subscriptions, virtual tipping, and game sales. Today, Microsoft is adopting one of those features for its own game streaming service, Mixer, with today’s launch of “Direct Purchase.

Ultrasound could waken a sleeping smart home

The home of the future, we are assured, will be swarming with tiny sensors: security cameras, carbon monoxide detectors, speakers, and everything else. Few need to be running all the time — but how do you wake them up when they’re needed if they’re off in the first place? Ultrasound. Read More

Adecco Group acquires recruiting startup Vettery for $100M

The Adecco Group, a global HR services firm headquartered in Switzerland, announced today that it has acquired Vettery. The financial terms were not disclosed, but a source with knowledge of the deal told us that the price was a little over $100 million.

Facebook’s plan to unite AR, VR, and News Feed with 3D posts

What if you could digitally sculpt a 3D object and share it on Facebook, play with it in virtual reality, or insert it into your world with augmented reality?

Sonos One is the speaker to beat for those that want great sound and smarts

The connected speaker wars are upon us, and one day they will be detailed in history books for all to remember. But here now, it can be hard to cut through the various narratives surrounding the options out there and pick a winner.

Instagram Direct one-ups Snapchat with replay privacy controls

Messaging is the heart of Snapchat, so after cloning and augmenting Stories, Instagram is hoping to boost intimate usage of Direct with privacy controls not found elsewhere. Now when you send an ephemeral photo or video from the Instagram Direct camera,

Fox News to launch an over-the-top streaming service, Fox Nation

Fox News is going over-the-top. The Fox News Channel officially announced today the upcoming launch of an over-the-top streaming service called Fox Nation that will include live exclusive daily programing as well as long-form content available only to subscribers.

Tenor hits 12B searches in its GIF keyboard every month

David McIntosh’s startup Tenor builds a GIF keyboard — but he actually hopes you’ll spend as little time searching on it as possible.Instead, Tenor’s aim has been to collapse the amount of time it takes for you to find a GIF you like and send it to a friend.

Edtech company Kidaptive raises $19.1 million for its adaptive learning platform

Edtech startup Kidaptive, an adaptive-learning company that begin its life with a suite of curriculum-focused iPad games for kids, announced today it has closed on $19.1 million in Series C funding, in a round led by Formation 8 and Korean education company Woongjin ThinkBig.

Stride, Atlassian’s Slack competitor, opens its API to all developers

The arrival of Stride, Atlassian’s Slack competitor, was probably the company’s biggest launch of 2017. While the company generally allows developers to easily integrate with its products, Stride’s API remained in closed beta for significantly longer than the product itself,

Hypergiant helps big brands look beyond the AI buzzwords

Artificial intelligence and machine learning are phrases that get tossed around a lot these days, to the point where they’re starting to seem meaningless. In fact, Ben Lamm said he’s seen the problem firsthand at his chatbot startup Conversable. “We kind of noticed this huge gap,” Lamm said.

Tresorit adds file restore to its e2e encrypted cloud storage service

Europe-based cloud storage startup Tresorit which mainly focuses on selling to small to medium size businesses has added a file restore feature to its e2e encrypted cloud storage platform which it’s touting as a helpful feature if you’re trying to recover from a ransomware attack. Read More

xMatters snares $40 million Series D led by Goldman Sachs Private Capital Investing

When a crisis happens and your system is down, it’s easy for panic and chaos to ensue. Large companies use a range of tools to monitor system health, and finding the source of the problem and ensuring the proper personnel are involved is not always easy. That’s where xMatters comes in.

Qualcomm now plans to close the NXP acquisition for $44 billion as quickly as possible

Qualcomm, Broadcom and NXP are on a boat. Broadcom wants to acquire Qualcomm, Qualcomm wants to acquire NXP. While Qualcomm has planned on buying NXP for over a year, NXP shareholders were a bit disappointed by Qualcomm’s initial price.Qualcomm just raised its bid and is now willing to pay $127.

Snapchat adds GIF stickers via Giphy, plus new Friends and Discover screen tabs

Snapchat is bringing one of the best recent features of Instagram Stories to its own app, with the ability to add GIF stickers from Giphy to your posts. This is a notable reversal of the typical pattern we’ve seen of Instagram cloning Snapchat features,

Chariot co-founder and CEO Ali Vahabzadeh left Ford at the beginning of February

As automakers continue to work on their strategies for the next generation of transportation, one of the biggies is making a change to its leadership structure. Ali Vahabzadeh, the CEO and co-founder of ride-sharing startup Chariot, which Ford acquired Chariot in September 2016,

Say goodbye to Android Pay and hello to Google Pay

As we reported last month, Google is uniting all of its different payment tools under the Google Pay brand. On Android, however, the Android Pay app stuck with its existing brand. That’s changing today, though, with the launch of Google Pay for Android. With this,

Spotify job listing hints the company’s ‘first physical products’ are coming

Spotify so far has been content to partner far and wide on hardware, via its Spotify Connect platform, which allows anyone building a connected speaker, mobile device or piece of AV equipment to turn their gadget into a Spotify speaker.

Culture juggernaut Hypebeast takes a majority stake in The Berrics to make skating huge again (still

The Berrics was started by Steve Berra and Eric Koston (the collective’s name is a portmanteau) as a place for kids to skate without getting hassled on the street. Now, The Berrics is being acquired by Hypebeast and they’re forming a new company “The Berrics Company”,

SpaceX to use a net boat called ‘Mr. Steven’ to recover next rocket fairing

SpaceX is all about reducing the cost of launching things into space, and right now one of those costs it think it can eliminate is having to use a new fairing every time it launches a rocket.

Chef InSpec 2.0 helps automate security compliance in cloud apps

How many times do you hear about a company exposing sensitive data because they forgot to lock down a data repository on Amazon? It happens surprisingly often. Chef wants to help developers and operations teams prevent that kind of incident. Today, the company released InSpec 2.0,

Tandem launches a credit card that offers cashback and no fees when spending abroad

Tandem, the U.K. challenger bank that recently acquired the banking arm of the famous Harrods department store partly in order to get its banking license back on track, has launched its first banking product:

Nuance ends development of the Swype keyboard apps

Nuance, the company that acquired veteran swipe-to-type keyboard maker Swype — all the way back in 2011, shelling out a cool $100M — has ended development of its Swype+Dragon dictation Android and iOS apps.   Read More

Uber parks its service in Morocco

Uber is pulling the brakes on its service in Morocco, which will cease on February 23, as it waits (and hopes) for local regulators to accommodate app-based ride-hailing. Read More

Sony Corp. to launch an AI-based taxi-hailing service in Japan

Sony Corporation said today that it will build an AI-based ride-hailing system in Japan in partnership with five taxi companies. The service will use artificial intelligence to manage taxi dispatches and forecast demand based on factors like weather, traffic and local events.

Homie raises $4M to help London’s ‘Generation Rent’ find their next property

Another nascent proptech startup targeting ‘Generation Rent’ is London-based Homie, which might best be described as a concierge-style service that promises to save Londoner’s time, hassle and money when going in search of their next rental property.

Amazon’s Prime Rewards Visa cardholders now get 5% back at Whole Foods if they pay for Prime

Amazon has already rolled out price cuts for Whole Foods shoppers as a result of its acquisition of the grocery chain. It has also rolled up its Treasure Truck deals service to Whole Foods locations, and began delivering Whole Foods groceries through Prime. Now,

Update for iOS and Macs negates text bomb that crashed devices

Last week we reported a major bug in Apple operating systems that would cause them to crash from mere exposure to either of two specific Unicode symbols. Today Apple fixes this major text-handling issue with iOS version 11.2.6 and macOS version 10.13.3, both now available for download.

The $20 Wyze security camera gets a sequel with improved intelligence and Amazon Echo support

The team behind WyzeCam is full of surprises. First they introduced a $20 plug and play security camera in October of last year, and now they’re already back with the sequel. The simply titled WyzeCam v2 is here, less than half a year later, bringing with it some pretty welcome updates.

Author Brian Dear talks about the amazing PLATO computing system

Before Xerox Parc there was PLATO. This amazing computing system came to life in 1960 and by the 1970s was running a number of graphical terminals well before the rise of Xerox PARC and the Alto.

Combining augmented reality, 3D printing and a robotic arm to prototype in real time

Robotic Modeling Assistant (RoMA) is a joint project out of MIT and Cornell that brings together a variety of different emerging technologies in an attempt to build a better prototyping machine. Using an augmented reality headset and two controllers,

Algorithmic zoning could be the answer to cheaper housing and more equitable cities

Zoning codes are a century old, and the lifeblood of all major U.S. cities (except arguably Houston), determining what can be built where and what activities can take place in a neighborhood. Yet as their complexity has risen,

Life sciences startup Avro aims to deliver drugs to children and the elderly through skin patches

Avro, a life sciences startup in Y Combinator’s current batch, is banking on a method to deliver medications to populations unable to swallow or chew — It will administer them through the skin. Starting with allergy medications,

Hulu’s weekend outage affected some users trying to watch Olympics, NBA All-Star game

Hulu is still recovering to a hit to its reputation due to a live streaming outage that affected some number of subscribers during the Super Bowl. But over the weekend, the company’s live TV service experienced another outage, this time leading to login and connection issues.

Wikipedia’s free-to-access program for developing countries is being sunset

A half-dozen years after launching Wikipedia Zero, The Wikimedia Foundation is sunsetting the program. Announced in 2012, it was the result of partnerships with mobile carriers, designed to waive the cost of accessing the free encyclopedia in developing countries,

Nike teamed up with Snap and Darkstore to pre-release Air Jordan III ‘Tinker’ shoes on Snapchat

Snap, Nike, Darkstore and Shopify teamed up in a collaboration of epic proportions to pre-release the Air Jordan III “Tinker” on Snapchat with same-day delivery last night after the NBA All-Star game. This is the first time a brand other than Snap has sold a product via Snapchat.

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