posted 1 day ago on techcrunch
 Berlin-based startup Blloon has launched an app that aims to get more young people reading ebooks by applying a freemium model to the medium — gifting a certain number of pages (1,000) when a user signs up, so they can get started reading straight away. Read More

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posted 1 day ago on techcrunch
 Deezer, the Paris-based music streaming service that competes against the likes of Spotify and Rdio, is switching up its game in the battle for more differentiation, more users and a higher profile in the U.S. It has acquired Stitcher, the San Francisco-based aggregator of podcasts and talk radio programming. Stitcher has amassed a catalog of 35,000 radio shows and podcasts, including eight… Read More

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posted 1 day ago on techcrunch
 DormChat aims to give people a new way to message each other that’s location-based and anonymity-optional — and it’s starting with college students. The iOS app was released earlier this year and is already available on more than 200 college campuses, including founder Adam Michalski’s alma mater Penn State. Michalski said that following that initial rollout, DormChat… Read More

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posted 1 day ago on techcrunch
 Amazon said it would be making its Rewards Visa from Chase compatible with the new Apple Pay system earlier this week, and the integration is already out the door. Amazon had said it would support it sometime, though they didn’t specify an exact timeline, so seeing it roll out this quickly is likely a pleasant surprise for card owners. We’ve received direct reports of customers… Read More

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posted 1 day ago on techcrunch
 Yelp has boosted its presence in Europe after announcing the acquisition of Restaurant-Kritik, a restaurant review service in Germany. Restaurant-Kritik claims to have over 330,000 reviews of more than 94,000 restaurants across Germany. Read More

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posted 1 day ago on techcrunch
 Spring.me, the new social network that was previously Formspring, has raised a total of $5 million in debt and equity seed funding from investors including Right Click Capital, Tank Stream Ventures, Nextec Strategic Capital, and Rubicon Project Founder Craig Roah. The company plans to use the funding to expand Spring.me in the U.S., where it just launched. Read More

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posted 1 day ago on techcrunch
 Bitcasa, a cloud storage service that initially made waves with a low cost unlimited storage offer is scrapping this option entirely — claiming it’s not being used enough to justify the high costs of dealing with a small group of what it dubs Terms of Service abusers. Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 MotionSavvy, the San Francisco startup working on tech to help the deaf communicate, has launched an Indiegogo campaign to commercialize its first product, UNI. The UNI app works with Leap Motion technology to translate each hand sign from American sign language and translates it into audible words on a tablet. We first wrote about the tech behind MotionSavvy when it launched out of the… Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 Given that Amazon was tanking the price of the Fire Phone down to 99 cents two months after launch (leading to many a “Fire sale!” joke), this probably won’t come as much of a surprise: the Fire Phone isn’t a success. On the Amazon earnings call today, Amazon noted that the company was taking a $170 million dollar writedown “primarily related” to… Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 Amazon reported lower than expected revenue in its third quarter, and a larger than expected loss. Analysts expected the company to lose $0.74 on revenue of $20.84 billion. Instead, Amazon lost $0.95 per share on revenue of $20.58 billion. That per-share loss works out to a net loss for the firm of $437 million. Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 Oneflare, a local services marketplace based in Sydney, Australia, has raised an additional $1 million AUD (about $876,000), bringing its total funding so far to $1.5 million AUD (about $1.3 million). Investors include Les Szekely of Equity Venture Partners, Garry Visontay, of the Sydney Seed Fund and Dr. Jeffrey Tobias of The Strategy Group. The startup says it will use the capital on… Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 After gaining more than 1 percent in regular trading, Microsoft reported its fiscal first quarter 2015 earnings: Revenue totaled $23.20 billion in the period, leading to profits of $0.54 per share. The revenue figure represents a 25 percent year-over-year increase, a large piece of which is due to the Nokia hardware acquisition. Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 Back in August, Sony started teasing a new feature they call “Share Play”. Though we’re still waiting to see just how well it works, the idea itself is wonderful: once enabled, you can let your friends play your games with you (or by themselves, even) without them actually owning a copy of the game. Up until now, Sony was pretty vague about when this feature would launch… Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 Dots, the betaworks-backed gaming studio led by Paul Murphy and Patrick Moberg, has today announced a rebranding for the company. The new logo takes inspiration from Charles Eames, according to a Medium post, and uses colors from the first iteration of Dots while incorporating the newer, and more popular, TwoDots game into the company logo. Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 In about an hour, Microsoft will release the results of its most recent quarter, the first quarter of its fiscal 2015. The company is expected to report revenue of $22 billion, and earnings per share between $0.49 and $0.55, depending on which set of averaged estimates you trust. That will all come shortly. For now, let’s talk about Surface. Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 I’ll be speaking at an event held by Geek Girls Carrots Crakow, a group of amazing programmers who are working to bring everyone onto the STEM wagon. The event will be held at Przemysłowa 12 in Krakow, Poland at 7pm. You can sign up here. I’ll also be attending and judging AGHacks, the biggest student Hackathon in Poland. This event will include “DARMOWE JEDZENIE I… Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 Apple has pushed its TestFlight Beta testing service live for everyone, the company revealed on its developer news portal today. Registered developers can now invite up to 1,000 beta testers to try out their iOS apps, using emailed invitations sent via the iTunes Connect portal. TestFlight, the beta testing service Apple acquired sometime within the last year, allows developers to build teams… Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 A new web application called Charlie has raised a seed round of $1.75 million led by Lightbank Capital for a product that emails you short, automatically generated one-pagers detailing what you need to know about the people you’re about to meet with, based on your Google Calendar entries. If this idea rings a bell with you, it’s because Charlie is not the first in recent months to… Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 Slack, the enterprise collaboration platform co-founded by Stewart Butterfield of Flickr fame, continues to defy its namesake: we have heard from sources that the company is raising a new round of funding at a valuation of between $800 million and $1 billion, just six months after raising nearly $43 million. The total raise is said to be eight figures and Sequoia and KPCB are participating,… Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 Today marks the launch of yet another ecommerce brand focused on mens apparel, as Jonny IV joins ranks with Buck Mason, Frank & Oak, and many others. Founded by Eugene Kang, the former head of ecommerce at Forever 21, Jonny IV is different from other brands in that it focuses on street wear as opposed to a single, look, like the preppy Frank & Oak, basics-focused Everlane, or the… Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 Remember all of the wonderfully-entertaining frustration that was Twitch Plays Pokemon? Take that concept and turn it on its head. Wrap it around a puzzle game instead of a side-scroller, and have players text in commands rather than input them via chat. The end result: TwilioPlays2048. Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 Is Rooms the anonymous Facebook app people were expecting? “No. Unequivocally No…because you cannot be anonymous in our app,” Josh Miller tells me. The Branch founder turned Facebook product manager’s new forums app Rooms launches today, and he says lessons from Tumblr, Twitter, Snapchat, and the early days of the web guided its construction. Rather than a… Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 It’s not quite anonymous, but forums standalone app Rooms is Facebook’s first product that allows you to ditch your real name. Rooms lets you set up a mobile-only in-app discussion space about any topic, customize the look and moderation settings, set a screen name for the room, and choose who to invite to share text, photos, videos, and comments with others in the Room. It’s… Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 Stop procrastinating and fill out your application for Hardware Battlefield. The show is set to be even better than last year with participating startups getting free exhibition space at the 2015 International CES and competing for $50,000 and the coveted Metal Man trophy. For the first time, TechCrunch has partnered with the CEA to be an official media partner of the tradeshow. This… Read More

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posted 2 days ago on techcrunch
 Aaron Patzer, the founder and former CEO of Mint is placing his next bet with the on-demand info space. He and co-founder Jean Sini (another former Minter) are launching the beta of Fountain, an app that gives you advice from a curated set of experts. The app is currently focusing on the home improvement space and in alpha testing phase with a bunch of friends and family, but Patzer tells us… Read More

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