If you thought that all the problems that Rocket Internet has had bringing its portfolio of startups and its business overall into the black would have spelled setbacks for future investing, think again. This week, the firm — based out of Berlin — reported that it had raised a new $1 billion fund, the biggest tech fund of any VC firm to date in Europe, it claims. The Rocket… Read More

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 A thirty-strong group of security researchers have co-signed an open letter calling for the Guardian to retract a story it published last week that had claimed mobile messaging app WhatsApp contains a “backdoor”. The newspaper suggests users switch to the Signal app instead. Read More

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 Accel, the VC firm that has been involved some of the biggest deals in the most recent tech boom — startups backed include Facebook, Supercell, Dropbox, Deliveroo, Slack and Atlassian, Spotify, Flipkart and many more — has appointed a new partner, Luciana Lixandru. Her rise at Accel — she was previously a principal investor — speaks to the evolution of the 30… Read More

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 You’ve probably seen a Meitu selfie in your Instagram or Facebook feed in the past 24 hours. The app smoothes skin, slims down faces, and even applies a layer of virtual blush and lipgloss, adding a beautifying effect to your photos. And although the app has been popular in China for years — Meitu went public in Hong Kong last month — it only recently caught on with… Read More

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Hanging out with the CEO of Zoom Eric Yuan and talking about the most recent investment for Sequoia for $100 million, LinkedIn’s major desktop update, and the NHTSA fully exonerates Tesla’s AutoPilot. All this on Crunch Report Read More

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I had a great time out here at CES 2017 in Las Vegas — every once in a while I got to sneak away and walk around a little bit and check out the goodies. A little walking here, a little checking stuff out there. Sometimes I fell asleep under tables… it’s just the nature of the beast. Sometimes people wanted me to check out their product, but I couldn’t do it right away… Read More

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 If, say, the presidential inauguration is a thing you’d like to watch on Friday morning, then great news, friend, there are plenty of options. The bad news is that you’ve missed the musical stylings of Toby Keith, Lee Greenwood and 3 Doors Down. The good news is that the real, good-old-fashioned inauguratin’ doesn’t really get started until 11:30AM ET tomorrow. Read More

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 Enterprise tech startups unveiled their products and pitched investors at Alchemist Accelerator’s 14th demo day in Santa Clara, Calif. today. The companies ranged from a Stanford AI labs spinout, Eloquent Labs, to the hardware-makers like Amber Agriculture and PubInno, to lots of software-as-a-service and cybersecurity developers, more like you’d expect from an… Read More

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 Nintendo has just confirmed that The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild will be the last first-party game for the company’s soon to be replaced Wii U. It’s a bittersweet moment for die-hard fans of the console — and yes, they exist. Read More

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 The U.S. Department of Transportation has identified 10 sites as officially designated proving grounds for autonomous vehicle testing in the U.S., including The Willow Run, Michigan-based American Center for Mobility; Concord, California’s GoMentum Station; the City of Pittsburgh and more. The sites are designed to help the locations share best practices and information, forming a… Read More

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 Hollywood and the academic artificial intelligence community have an interesting relationship, to say the least. Many people interested in the field, myself included, love science fiction, but regularly end up being the obnoxious commentator on family movie night pointing out that Johnny Depp’s Transcendence is more anti-intelligence than artificial intelligence. So it wasn’t all… Read More

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 Roli’s fun little modular musical instrument took a turn for the more serious today, as the UK-based startup announced compatibility with a number of top music production apps. The functionality comes courtesy of a new Dashboard app for Mac and Windows unveiled at the NAMM conference in Anaheim today, letting Blocks serve as controllers for Logic Pro X, Ableton, Cubase, Omnisphere,… Read More

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 While running Yardsale, a previous Y Combinator startup based around essentially making it easy to sell your old stuff, Ryan Mickle had the benefit of talking to alumni and colleagues to figure out what to use to build it. But one of the basic services he used to run it ended up costing more in the long run as the app ran into critical problems when it came to some transactions —… Read More

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 Amazon has stayed relatively silent on the topic of VR-based e-commerce and the VR platform in general, especially as fellow tech titans like Facebook and Google have devoted so many resources to virtual reality. However, the company has been looking to embrace VR content. Last month the company hired former Tribeca Film Festival head Genna Terranova to oversee VR projects at the… Read More

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 Samsung tonight confirmed that it’s chosen January 23 to announce the long-awaited findings into its investigation surrounding the Galaxy Note 7. The date had been floated earlier this week in a story that also pinpointed the root cause of the explosions as, predictably, a faulty battery. The press conference will be held at the company’s headquarters in Seoul, South Korea at… Read More

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 Slack has been busy lately. The two-year-old company has covered a lot of ground since it launched. Beyond growing to 4 million daily active users and 1.25 million paid users, the company also just announced a long-awaited feature: threaded conversations. Plus, Slack has moved into seven global offices, including San Francisco, Vancouver, Melbourne, London, Toronto, Dublin and now NYC. The… Read More

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 A hacker prodding a public-facing Army recruitment website in early December stumbled upon a vulnerability, then another, until he found himself suddenly connected to an internal Department of Defense network that should have prompted him for special access credentials. Read More

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 Machine learning and AI are incredible tools, but they also require a similarly incredible amount of computing power. If that requirement could be cut by a couple orders of magnitude, AI would be unfettered from its banks of parallel processors and free to inhabit practically any device — which is exactly what a breakthrough at the Allen Institute for AI makes possible. Read More

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 Uber settled a lawsuit filed by the Federal Trade Commission today for $20 million. The lawsuit alleged that the ride-hailing app recruited drivers by misleading them about the amount of money they could earn through the app and the auto financing deals they could get through Uber’s Vehicle Solutions Program. The lawsuit claims that Uber made “false, misleading, or… Read More

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 Amazon and the U.S. Department of Labor have signed an agreement to create a registered apprenticeship program to train veterans for tech jobs at the online retail giant, the DOL announced today. Through ApprenticeshipUSA, people can earn a salary while learning the skills needed for the job. This comes after Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced last May the company’s goals to hire… Read More

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