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TechCrunch is a group-edited blog that profiles the companies, products and events defining and transforming the new web.
Updated: 2 hours 42 min ago

Ozobot’s Tiny Robots Use Squiggly Lines And Google’s Blockly To Teach Kids To Code

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 16:29
 One of the bigger evolutions in education has been the push to get kids to become more computer-literate, yet one of the hardest hurdles has been making the process of learning and writing programming languages less dry. A startup out of southern California has found an innovative way of tackling this, using a golfball-sized robot that follows trails that you draw using fat, colored felt… Read More

3D Systems Acquires London-Based 3D Printer Startup BotObjects

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 16:05
 Just a few days in and right on cue for CES, 2015 has already seen some consolidation in the burgeoning 3D printer space. Read More

LG’s New G Flex 2 Bends In All The Right Places

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 16:02
 LG is about to announce its latest flagship smartphone, the G Flex 2. It bends! That’s the big news. But don’t get too excited. The new bendy LG phone is more of an assurance that the G Flex 2 is durable. Yet, the bend itself doesn’t promise added functionality of any sort. However, durability is clearly a focal point. However you bend the phone, LG promises that the phone… Read More

X.ai Raises $9.2M At A $40M Valuation For Its AI-Based Email Assistant Who Sets Up Meetings

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 16:02
 Advances in artificial intelligence and big data are being used to tackle some of the biggest problems of our modern times, but a startup out of New York called x.ai is applying the same new tech to address some of the more mundane but no less persistent issues, too. The company, which is still in closed beta, today is announcing nearly $10 million in new funding that it will use to build… Read More

Google Debuts Its Own AirPlay For Sound With Cast For Audio

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 16:00
 Google is launching its own streaming audio solution, which is designed to let hardware partners embed Chromecast audio capabilities into their speakers, soundbars, receivers and other sound-producing devices. Google launching Cast for audio means that its streaming solution is now more directly analogous to AirPlay, but it also allows you to use Android, iOS and even web-based sources via… Read More

CES Will Be Lousy With Wearables

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 15:49
 On the cusp of the annual plunge into the CES-pool, where a gigantic cocktail shaker of consumer electronics companies will spray forth what will mostly turn out to be forlorn hopes for growth, it’s customary to shake one’s head at the sorry, self-obsessed state of tech. Read More

Amazon’s Third-Party Sellers Ship Record-Breaking 2 Billion Items In 2014, But Merchant Numbers Stay Flat

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 15:49
 Amazon reported on Monday that third-party sellers on its site sold a record-breaking 2 billion items in 2014, and their adoption of Amazon’s fulfillment services also grew 65% year-over-year. The numbers are significant because third-party sellers are a high-margin part of Amazon’s business, as the company is able to take a cut of every sale, plus charge extra fees for… Read More

LongAccess Raises More Funds For BigStash, Its Long Term Archiving Service

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 14:51
 Last year we covered Long Access a startup which offers very long-term cloud infrastructure storage for enterprises. We’re talking about prepaid storage and access for 30 years. The company had previously raised €210,000. It’s now raised a further €300,000 in seed funding from the European Commission-backed Openfund, its existing backer, based in Greece. Long Access is using… Read More

Misfit Debuts A New “Swarovski Shine” Wearables Collection Featuring Crystal Jewelry, Solar Charging

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 14:27
 Misfit, the maker of “connected” products including smart home items and its flagship wearable device, the Misfit Shine, has today teamed up with Swarovski to introduce a new product line focused on bringing a more fashion-forward sense to its wearables collection. The Swarovski Shine Collection, as it’s called, combines Swarovski’s crystal jewelry and… Read More

Borrowing From SnapChat’s Playbook, Curated Film Platform MUBI Raises $15M

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 14:03
 MUBI, the global curated film streaming service, has closed a new $15 million funding round, bringing the total amount it’s raised so far to $20 million. Meanwhile, MUBI launched a few days ago on PlayStation 4, after being on PlayStation 3. It’s had over 5.5 million downloads to date, and makes MUBI now available in 43 territories. It’s also been confirmed as launch partners… Read More

After Raising $150 Million In Stealth Mode, What The Heck Is Gogoro?

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 13:59
 In 2011, Gogoro raised $50 million. Three years later, another $100 million. And yet, no one seems to have any idea what the heck Gogoro does. Until now. Read More

Garmin Just Entered The Smartwatch Race With The $250 Vivoactive

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 13:00
 Meet the Vivoactive. This is Garmin’s answer to the Apple Watch, the Fitbit Surge and all the rest of the smartwatches. And seriously, the Vivoactive seems like a contender. The Vivoactive is packed with the standard fitness-focused accruements including a pedometer, heartrate monitoring capability, GPS and a touchscreen display Garmin says is readable in sunlight. The watch band is… Read More

Bitstamp Suspends Its Bitcoin Exchange Following A Suspected Hack

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 12:48
 The year is but five days old and already we have our first bitcoin hacking story of 2015 after Bitstamp, a Slovenia-based Bitcoin exchange which raised $10 million last year, suspended its service due to a suspected breach. Read More

Yummly Teams Up With Instacart To Deliver Recipe Ingredients In An Hour

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 12:00
 If you are anything like me you’d rather order the food than make it in your kitchen. But every so often in the cold of winter I get the itch to play Martha Stewart. The problem is I’m missing key ingredients in almost every recipe I want to try. Pinterest-like recipe platform Yummly is hoping to solve that for those like myself by partnering with grocery delivery startup… Read More

Microsoft Outs An Entry Level Facebook Messenger Phone

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 09:52
 Fans of branding confusion will be pleased to hear Microsoft hasn’t ditched the Nokia phone brand quite yet. It’s just announced a new entry level mobile phone, badged with the Nokia name: the Nokia 215, dubbing the handset its “most affordable Internet-ready entry level phone yet” — and aiming it at first time mobile buyers starting in the Middle East, Africa,… Read More

‘Uber For Logistics’ Startup Lalamove Lands $10M To Expand In China And Southeast Asia

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 08:12
 Lalamove, an Uber-like logistics service, has raised $10 million to expand its presence across Asia, where it already operates in six cities. Read More

Nest Adds 15 More Companies To Its “Works With Nest” Program

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 08:01
 Nest is today announcing significant new partners to its “Works with Nest” developer program. The new additions continues Nest’s quest to turn its product into the heart of a smart home. Among the new partners includes Lutron, Insteon, and Philips Hue. Each company built Nest products into its ecosystem. For example, now, with the Lutron intigration, home owners can… Read More

Tencent Launches China’s First Private Online Bank

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 07:35
 Tencent, one of the top Internet companies in China, launched the country’s first private online bank today. Called WeBank after Tencent’s popular messaging app WeChat, the financial institution is the first one in China to be based on the Internet. Read More

Alibaba Competitor Wanda E-commerce Raises $161M At $3B Valuation

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 06:39
 China-based Wanda E-commerce, which hopes to position itself as a rival against Alibaba, has raised one billion RMB (about $161 million) in funding from investment funds Centec Networks and Xude Rendao. Wanda E-commerce says this quadruples its valuation to 20 billion yuan (about $3 billion). Read More

Cognitive Networks Detects What You’re Watching On Your Smart TV

Mon, 05/01/2015 - 06:01
 If you’re looking for a more interactive experience from your favorite TV shows, a company called Cognitive Networks is working to make it happen. Cognitive Networks was founded in 2008 and we last wrote about it back in 2013, after the company announced its partnership with LG. When I ran into President Zee Neumeier tonight at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, he told me that… Read More

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