January 23, 2019, 7:30 AM

January 23, 2019

7:10 AM  •
Dan Primack / Axios:  Desktop Metal, a maker of 3D metal printing systems for commercial and industrial use, raises $160M led by a subsidiary of Koch Industries at a ~$1.5B valuation
6:50 AM  •
Liz Alderman / New York Times:  Despite Bitcoin's dive, thousands of Georgians have sold cars to buy computers to mine Bitcoin; ~10% of the country's energy output goes into mining Bitcoin
4:20 AM  •
Steven T. Wright / Ars Technica:  A look at the history of LiveJournal, the early blogging platform that boasted 10M+ accounts at its height but faltered after questionable business decisions
2:05 AM  •
New York Times:  How Huawei made steady progress expanding into Europe over many years by spending big, only to have it unravel over security concerns from the US, UK, others
12:10 AM  •
Jonathan Peters / Columbia Journalism Review:  In Colorado, over two dozen law enforcement agencies statewide have encrypted their radio communications, making it hard for crime reporters to cover their beat

January 22, 2019

11:00 PM  •
Louise Matsakis / Wired:  Google announces it will contribute an additional $3.1M to Wikimedia and give Wikipedia editors free access to Custom Search API and Cloud Vision API
10:35 PM  •
Brian Krebs / Krebs on Security:  New research details how two widely received spam email campaigns over the past few months were made possible by a previously detailed weakness at
9:00 PM  •
Paresh Dave / Reuters:  Google spent $21.2M on US govt lobbying in 2018, up from $18.04M in 2017; Facebook spent $12.62M, up from $11.51M; and Microsoft spent $9.52M, up from $8.5M
7:50 PM  •
Rebekah Valentine /  NPD Group: US video game revenue in 2018 reached a record $43.4B, up 18% YoY, with software earning $35.8B, up 18% YoY, and hardware earning $7.5B, up 15% YoY
6:35 PM  •
Sara Fischer / Axios:  Viacom to acquire Pluto TV, a free, ad-supported streaming service, for $340M in cash; Pluto TV to operate as an independent subsidiary when the deal closes
6:20 PM  •
Pushkala Aripaka / Reuters:  IBM beats with Q4 revenue of $21.76B, down 3% YoY, vs. $21.71B analyst estimate, and full-year cloud revenue of $19.2B, up 12% YoY; stock up 6%+ after hours
6:15 PM  •
Anthony D'Alessandro / Deadline:  The Motion Picture Association of America has added Netflix as a member, the first internet-based service to be added
5:30 PM  •
Jon Fingas / Engadget:  Twitter begins limited rollout of a new web interface with a two-column layout, keyboard shortcuts, a dedicated emoji button, and a revised trends section
5:20 PM  •
Sam Levin / The Guardian:  US DoL files complaint against Oracle for discrimination against women and people of color, seeks $400M+ for workers who have suffered pay inequities
5:05 PM  •
Ashley Carman / The Verge:  Match Group and the media brand Betches have partnered to launch Ship, an iOS dating app that allows users to help their friends pick out potential dates
4:45 PM  •
Abner Li / 9to5Google:  Google says 30M Chromebooks are used in education, up 5M from May 2018, and that 80M people use its G Suite for Education platform
4:20 PM  •
Paul Sawers / VentureBeat:  TomTom announces it's selling its telematics unit, which includes fleet management solutions, to automotive giant Bridgestone Europe for €910M
4:15 PM  •
Sean Lyngaas / CyberScoop:  DHS issues rare “emergency” directive ordering federal agencies to secure credentials for DNS records; sources: six agencies have seen malicious DNS activity
4:05 PM  •
Adi Robertson / The Verge:  SCOTUS declines to hear case over whether Yelp is responsible for removing defamatory reviews from its site after CA Supreme Court ruled in Yelp's favor in 2018
3:05 PM  •
Dan Primack / Axios:  Source: Zynga founder Mark Pincus is raising up to $700M for a new investment fund that will focus on publicly traded tech firms needing strategic restructuring
2:55 PM  •
Wall Street Journal:  Analysis of millions of Glassdoor reviews finds 400+ companies, including SpaceX and Slack, have unusual single-month increases in mostly positive posts
2:35 PM  •
Kyle Wiggers / VentureBeat:  Google will retire classic Hangouts for G Suite customers in October, after its previous announcement that Hangouts would be split into Hangouts Chat, Meet apps
1:50 PM  •
FinSMEs:  Hailo, an Israel-based developer of a microprocessor for deep learning on edge devices, expands its Series A by an additional $8.5M to $21M
1:30 PM  •
Sara Fischer / Axios:  Vox Media is acquiring The Coral Project, an open-source publishing platform housed within the Mozilla Foundation
1:00 PM  •
Gabriela Mello / Reuters:  Amazon launches direct sales of merchandise in Brazil after months of delays caused by complicated logistics, testy vendor relations, and a complex tax system
12:55 PM  •
CNN:  Inside Uber's Special Investigations Unit, a 60+ person team handling severe reported incidents, nearly 1,200/week, often leading to stress and emotional trauma
12:35 PM  •
Kate Clark / TechCrunch:  Online birth control prescription and delivery service The Pill Club raises $51M Series B led by VMG Partners, bringing total raised to $67M
12:23 PM  •
Tom Warren / The Verge:  Microsoft unveils Microsoft Classroom Pen, optimized for the Surface Go and sold in packs of 20 to schools, and 7 new PCs from Acer, Dell, Lenovo from $189-$320
12:19 PM  •
Devindra Hardawar / Engadget:  Microsoft expands its coding language for visually impaired children, now called Code Jumper, partnering with a non-profit to expand internationally
11:30 AM  •
Steven Overly / Politico:  Sources: Netflix is in advanced talks to join the Motion Picture Association of America and would be the first internet-based service to do so if it does
11:20 AM  •
Ingrid Lunden / TechCrunch:  Dosh raises $40M, sources say at a $300M valuation, following a $44M Series A nine months ago, as its cash back app has doled out ~$50M to shoppers
11:00 AM  •
Kyle Wiggers / VentureBeat:  Digital identity management firm Keyfactor, formerly Certified Security Solutions, announces $77M in growth funding led by Insight Venture Partners
10:45 AM  •
Molly Price / CNET:  UPS and Latch, which launched a pilot of their Amazon Key-like delivery service in SF and NYC last year, plan to expand to 10 new US cities by mid-year
9:55 AM  •
Jon Russell / TechCrunch:  Japanese early stage incubator Digital Garage teams up with Blockstream to develop blockchain-based financial services in Japan
9:40 AM  •
Yingzhi Yang / South China Morning Post:  A look at Hainan, China's latest free-trade zone with a visa free policy, which offers startups free rent, reduced taxes, and access to govt-backed VC funding
9:30 AM  •
Apple:  Apple Pay expands to Target, Taco Bell, and other US chains and now covers 74 of the top 100 US merchants
6:25 AM  •
Wall Street Journal:  Sources: Foxconn is considering producing iPhones in India, a move that could reduce Apple's dependence on China and help lower iPhone prices in India
6:10 AM  •
Toby Sterling / Reuters:  Dutch navigation company TomTom to sell Telematics, its fleet management business, to Japan's Bridgestone for €910M
5:55 AM  •
Takashi Mochizuki / Wall Street Journal:  Sources: Apple is likely to drop LCD displays altogether in its 2020 iPhone lineup in favor of OLED displays, which allow for more flexible handset designs
2:20 AM  •
Eric Bellman / Wall Street Journal:  The rise of mobile video in India is requiring YouTube and others to innovate to better serve Indian users, who average 40+ hours/month of video from data plans

January 21, 2019

10:20 PM  •
Donie O'Sullivan / CNN:  Twitter, citing rules violation, suspends account that helped amplify the video of an encounter between a Native American elder and students wearing MAGA hats
9:40 PM  •
Carolyn Said / San Francisco Chronicle:  Food delivery service Munchery says it will end operations effective immediately and will refund any outstanding orders; Munchery had raised $125M+ from VCs
8:50 PM  •
Laura He / South China Morning Post:  Chinese online ticketing app Maoyan postpones Hong Kong IPO to Feb. 4 after naming Xiaomi as one of three new cornerstone investors, seeks to raise up to $350M
7:35 PM  •
Benjamin Mayo / 9to5Mac:  Apple says its Giving program has raised $365M+ for nonprofits since it began eight years ago, with $125M+ in donations and 250M+ hours volunteered in 2018
6:25 PM  •
Kyle Wiggers / VentureBeat:  Gartner survey of more than 3,000 CIOs in 89 countries finds that deployment of AI in enterprise grew 270% in the past four years and 37% in the last year
5:05 PM  •
Zack Whittaker / TechCrunch:  Researcher says AIESEC, a non-profit claiming to be the “world's largest youth-run organization” left 4M+ intern applications with sensitive info exposed online
3:55 PM  •
Ann M. Simmons / Wall Street Journal:  Russia says it's taking “administrative action” against Facebook and Twitter, alleging it hasn't received details of their compliance with data-localization law
3:45 PM  •
Daniel Boffey / The Guardian:  A Dutch surgeon formally disciplined for medical negligence wins legal action to remove Google results about her case in landmark “right to be forgotten” ruling
1:30 PM  •
Mehedi Hassan / Thurrott:  Spotify is testing a feature on iOS that will allow users to block any artist
12:30 PM  •
Catalin Cimpanu / ZDNet:  A casino group behind sites like left 108M+ records exposed on a server including players' bets, withdrawals, names, home addresses, phone numbers
11:10 AM  •
Romain Dillet / TechCrunch:  Google fined €50M by French watchdog CNIL under GDPR for alleged lack of transparency, info, and consent about ads personalization in Android's onboarding flow
10:12 AM  •
The Local:  Google fined €50M by the French data protection watchdog CNIL under GDPR for failing to provide transparent, easily accessible info on its data consent policies
9:30 AM  •
Kyle Wiggers / VentureBeat:  Kaia Health, which makes apps that help manage chronic pain using AI and motion-tracking tech, raises $10M Series A
8:50 AM  •
Reuters:  WhatsApp is now globally limiting the forwarding of messages to five recipients, in a bid to fight “misinformation and rumors”
7:40 AM  •
Yoolim Lee / Bloomberg:  A reporter, who was injured when her Grab car crashed in Singapore, set out to probe Grab's image as a sober and law-abiding startup but found no smoking gun
6:30 AM  •
Ryan Browne / CNBC:  London-based MarketInvoice, an online invoicing platform, raises £26M Series B led by Barclays and Santander, and a £30M debt facility from Viola Credit
5:00 AM  •
Emily Bell / Columbia Journalism Review:  Facebook's journalism funding does not guarantee the success of high-quality reporting on its platform, which would obviate the need for such cash infusions
1:45 AM  •
Kate Clark / TechCrunch:  Knock, a home trade-in platform started by Trulia veterans, has raised $400M Series B in equity and debt financing led by Foundry Group

January 20, 2019

9:35 PM  •
Dan Rys / Billboard:  Profile of Audiomack, which started as a mixtape hosting site and now has a popular free music streaming service with 1.5M users, up from 400K a year ago
7:00 PM  •
O'Ryan Johnson / CRN:  AppRiver, a Florida-based cybersecurity company that focuses on email and web protection, agrees to be acquired by email security firm Zix Corporation for $275M
6:00 PM  •
Sam Byford / The Verge:  Video of a purported Google Pixel 3 Lite shows a phone with a plastic case, 3.5mm headphone jack, 5.56" 2220x1080 LCD display, and Snapdragon 670 CPU
3:00 PM  •
James Cook / Telegraph:  Uber is hiring for a new Micromobility Robotics team to develop autonomous scooters and bikes that can drive themselves to reach customers and charging points
1:50 PM  •
Josh Constine / TechCrunch:  Facebook to begin rollout of Community Actions, a petition feature for users to tag government agencies and officials to advocate for change, to select US users
12:05 PM  •
Alex Sherman / CNBC:  SEC filing: Disney lost $1B+ from streaming in its 2018 fiscal year, with a $580M loss attributed to its stake in Hulu and $469M to ownership of BAMtech
7:00 AM  •
Jon Russell / TechCrunch:  Indonesian ride-hailing company Go-Jek acquires Philippines-based fintech startup, sources say for $72M, ahead of a planned expansion into the country
1:55 AM  •
James Ball / Columbia Journalism Review:  Tech companies funding journalism projects deepens their codependence and implies the media is the exception that should be protected from tech's disruption

January 19, 2019

11:20 PM  •
Matt Binder / Mashable:  Google Maps rolls out ability to see user-reported speed traps via small camera icons, in North America, UK, Australia, Russia, Brazil, India, and Indonesia
9:20 PM  •
Wall Street Journal:  A Japanese hotel that opened in 2015 as the “world's first robot hotel” has fired most of its robots after they frustrated guests and made more work for staff
7:20 PM  •
Tom Simonite / Wired:  Strategy Robot, founded by the creators of an AI bot that beat four top professional Texas Hold 'Em players, signs a $10M two-year contract with the US Army
5:20 PM  •
Rani Molla / Recode:  Voicebot survey estimates that about 77M US adults use voice assistants in their cars at least monthly, compared with 45.7M using them on smart speakers
3:20 PM  •
Quynh Nguyen / DealStreetAsia:  DaDa, a Chinese online tutoring service that helps children aged 4 to 16 learn English from native speakers, raises $255M Series D led by Warburg Pincus
1:20 PM  •
Anna Irrera / Reuters:  Chainalysis: Bitcoin transactions on darknet markets rose throughout 2018 to an average of $2M/day, nearly double the activity measured at the start of the year
7:05 AM  •
Nicole Perlroth / New York Times:  DNC says in court filing that it was a target of a failed spearphishing campaign after the midterms; researchers: the campaign resembled Russia-linked attacks
2:00 AM  •
Biz Carson / Forbes:  Profile of angel investor and co-founder Ali Partovi, who now manages Neo, a fund that matches talented young engineers with tech industry veterans
12:30 AM  •
Catalin Cimpanu / ZDNet:  Report: vulnerability in Marvell's Wi-Fi SoC used in devices like PS4, Xbox One, and Surface laptops lets attackers hijack the device with no user interaction

January 18, 2019

9:45 PM  •
Manish Singh / VentureBeat:  The owner of Reliance Retail, India's biggest retailer, and Jio, a disruptive telecom, announces an online retail platform to compete with Flipkart and Amazon
6:50 PM  •
Alex Heath / Cheddar:  Sources: Snap fires security chief over secret relationship with a consultant and pushes out his boss, the head of HR, amid multiple departures in recent months
5:50 PM  •
Paul Hill / Neowin:  Amazon says ~200K SMBs generated $100K+ in sales via Amazon stores in 2018, 50K exceeded $500K, and the number of SMBs that sold $1M+ grew by 20%
4:50 PM  •
Wall Street Journal:  Sources: Airbnb held informal talks to buy discounted hotel booking app HotelTonight; HotelTonight was valued at $463M in a March 2017 funding round
3:55 PM  •
Jon Russell / TechCrunch:  Indonesian e-commerce startup Bukalapak, which was valued at $1B last year, raises $50M Series D
3:20 PM  •
Julia Reda:  EU's copyright reform with “link tax” and “upload filters” suffers a setback as 11 member states vote against the proposal, making adoption in May less likely
3:10 PM  •
Jon Porter / The Verge:  Facebook starts wide rollout of its redesigned Messenger app, which it first announced at F8 last May with limited availability in October
2:44 PM  •
Washington Post:  Sources: FTC commissioners have met to consider a record fine against Facebook for potentially violating a 2011 consent decree about user privacy
1:55 PM  •
Financial Times:  Sources: Spotify plans to launch a ~$100 voice-controlled in-car music player with preset buttons that correspond to Spotify playlists later this year
1:22 PM  •
Josh Constine / TechCrunch:  Facebook confirms it is testing LOL, a feed of funny videos and GIF-like clips pulled from News Feed posts by top meme Pages
12:55 PM  •
Janko Roettgers / Variety:  A postmortem of AR startup Meta, as the company's CEO says the unnamed investor who acquired its assets will continue to support Meta's existing products
12:20 PM  •
Reuters:  Chinese drone maker DJI says it has discovered several cases of serious corruption at the company and expects 2018 losses of more than $150M as a result
12:05 PM  •
Sapna Maheshwari / New York Times:  AT&T to resume advertising on YouTube after pulling its ads in 2017 because they were appearing alongside offensive videos
11:45 AM  •
Dami Lee / The Verge:  Verizon says its spam and robocall protection service, previously available as a $3 add-on, will be free to all subscribers starting in March
11:30 AM  •
Natasha Lomas / TechCrunch:  Max Schrems files GDPR complaints against Amazon, Apple, Netflix, Spotify, YouTube, others for failing to provide required info about data they collect on users
9:25 AM  •
Ingrid Lunden / TechCrunch:  Zipwhip, which provides a platform for businesses to interact with customers by text message, raises $51.5M Series D, bringing the total raised to $92.5M