All 84 startups from Y Combinator’s S19 Demo Day 1

August 21, 2019

It’s that time of year, Silicon Valley’s investor technocrati and advice-giving Twitter celebrities descended upon Pier 48 in San Francisco to judge the latest summer batch of Y Combinator startups. TechCrunch was there, as well, and we were tapping away feverishly as co-founders pitched to woo investors. There are 197 companies in total in the summer YC batch, we heard from 84 of them today — in addition to a…

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Samsung Galaxy Note 10+ review

August 18, 2019

It’s true, you’ve got the Galaxy Note to thank for your big phone. When the device hit the scene at IFA 2011, large screens were still a punchline. That same year, Steve Jobs famously joked about phones with screens larger than four inches, telling a crowd of reporters, “nobody’s going to buy that.” In 2019, the average screen size hovers around 5.5 inches. That’s a touch larger than the original…

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Penta, the German business banking startup, raises €8M additional funding

August 7, 2019

Penta, the business banking provider for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) that was recently acquired by fintech company builder Finleap, has raised “over” €8 million in new funding. The round is led by HV Holtzbrinck Ventures. Also participating is Finleap, alongside Fabrick, the Italian platform for open banking and fintech services, which is another of Penta’s existing shareholders. The startup raised a €7 million Series A round in late…

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Spaceflow, the ‘tenant experience platform’, scores $1.8M investment

August 7, 2019

Spaceflow, a startup founded out of Prague that offers a “tenant experience platform” to help landlords provide a better service, has raised $1.8 million in funding. Leading the round is Credo Ventures, with participation from Day One Capital, and UP21. The company, which also has an office in New York, says it will use the new capital to hire additional members of its product development team, and to meet its…

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Apple suspends Siri response grading in response to privacy concerns

August 3, 2019

In response to concerns raised by a Guardian story last week over how recordings of Siri queries are used for quality control, Apple is suspending the program world wide. Apple says it will review the process that it uses, called grading, to determine whether Siri is hearing queries correctly, or being invoked by mistake. In addition, it will be issuing a software update in the future that will let Siri…

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Elon Musk’s Neuralink looks to begin outfitting human brains with faster input and output starting next year

July 18, 2019

Neuralink, the Elon Musk-led startup that the multi-entrepreneur founded in 2017, is working on technology that’s based around ‘threads’ which it says can be implanted in human brains with much less potential impact to the surrounding brain tissue vs. what’s currently used for today’s brain-computer interfaces. “Most people don’t realize, we can solve that with a chip,” Musk said to kick off Neuralink’s event, talking about some of the brain…

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Apple disables Walkie Talkie app due to vulnerability that could allow iPhone eavesdropping

July 12, 2019

Apple has disabled the Apple Watch Walkie Talkie app due to an unspecified vulnerability that could allow a person to listen to another customer’s iPhone without consent, the company told TechCrunch this evening. Apple has apologized for the bug and for the inconvenience of being unable to use the feature while a fix is made. The Walkie Talkie app on Apple Watch allows two users who have accepted an invite…

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Glitch is bringing remix culture back to the web with a $30 million Series A round

July 11, 2019

Building apps and tools on the web shouldn’t just be for the technically inclined. In the early days of the web, it was easy to make your MySpace account, for example, unique to your personal aesthetic. Glitch is doing that for the modern era. Glitch, formerly known as Fog Greek Software, is an online community where people can upload projects and enable others to remix them. Dash likens coding on…

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Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic will be the first publicly traded company for human spaceflight

July 10, 2019

The race to become the first publicly traded company dedicated to human spaceflight is over, and Virgin Galactic has won. The company will be listing its shares on the New York Stock Exchange through a minority acquisition made by Social Capital Hedosophia; the special purpose acquisition company created by former Facebook executive Chamath Palihapitiya as part of his exploration of alternative strategies to venture capital investing as the head of…

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Swedish ‘neobank’ P.F.C. picks up €5M backing from Nordic banking giant Nordea

P.F.C. (Personal Finance Co.), a so-called “neobank” founded in Sweden, has raised €5 million in funding. Backing the young company is Nordea, the largest bank in the Nordics region. In other words, chalk this up as another example of an incumbent bank placing financial and strategic bets on a fintech upstart, even if it doesn’t always end as the parties involved planned. Nordea is present in 20 countries, including having…

July 6, 2019
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