posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Facebook released its biannual transparency report today, detailing the requests for user data it received from government agencies in the second half of 2015. The report includes requests received by Facebook as well as Messenger, WhatsApp, and Instagram. Facebook also disclosed how many posts it censors for violating local law in the countries where it operates. The social media… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 If you think Tickle Me Elmo is freaky already, wait until those talking monsters can beat you at Jeopardy!. Sesame Workshop, the educational nonprofit behind Sesame Street and its iconic characters, this week announced a partnership with IBM Watson to develop edtech for pre-school children. Sesame Workshop is no newcomer to tech. The organization previously set up a venture fund in… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Calling it an “un-pivot,” Biz Stone is bringing back the original Jelly concept. Launching today, the new and improved Jelly remains a Q&A platform, but with an added twist. This time, everything is anonymous so you can ask what you really want to know. Referring to the new Jelly an “on-demand search engine,” Stone said that one lesson he learned from the… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 You know entrepreneurship has gone mainstream when a local Shark Tank hits cable TV. I was approached by the Shark Tank production team in Mexico to recommend startups for the show. I sent some names of candidates that had not yet received institutional capital nor angel investment and could benefit from the exposure — at their own risk. As entrepreneurship and reality TV collide in… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Google has just made a change to its mobile application storefront, Google Play, which will help customers make better decisions about the apps they want to download: it’s now displaying if an app contains advertisements. This label will now appear alongside the existing designation which indicates if an app offers in-app purchases, the company has confirmed to TechCrunch. The change… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 As Congress debates how it should address the ongoing debate over encryption, Rep. Ted Lieu is working to get his fellow Congress members to adopt end-to-end encryption to secure their communications. Lieu is meeting next week with House of Representatives chief information officer Catherine Szpindor to discuss how to get the representatives to encrypt their communications with staffers, and… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 In what is clearly part of the company’s efforts to get more enterprise customers on its platforms, Google today announced that it has renewed its ISO 27001 certification for the fourth year in a row and upped its product coverage from 34 to 59 products. In addition, Google Apps for Work and the Google Cloud Platform have now also been certified for ISO 27017 for cloud security and… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 World View, the advanced high altitude balloon company, has raised a $15 million Series B led by Canaan Partners. The round also included investments from Northwest Venture Partners, Tencent, Moment Ventures and Base Ventures. The company had previously raised $7.1 million. This marks the second aerospace investment for Canaan Partners, who previously invested in Skybox Imaging. “I… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Bnbsitter is another startup operating in the Airbnb and short term rentals ecosystem. However, unlike property-management style concierge services, such as London-based Hostmaker, which charge an on-going management fee, the Paris-based company offers something more akin to an on-demand platform for concierge. Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 The New York Times is giving out free Google Cardboard VR devices. Yes, again! The company had previously distributed a million some devices to print subscribers as part of the kickoff celebration around its then-new NYT VR app, built in collaboration with Google, back in November 2015. Today, the media company says it will send out another 300,000 Cardboard viewers to its “most… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Two and a half years ago Bitlock set out to crowdfund a smart bike lock at a time when hype around connected devices was surging and goodwill in crowdfunding platforms was buoyant. Since then both categories have taken some confidence knocks and served up disappointments aplenty. So what happened? Did Bitlock ship, and if so, did its smart device live up to expectations? What problems did it… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 The lack of diversity in tech isn’t a new story. However, the blood, sweat and tears that have gone into the push for diversity and inclusion are often missing from the story. Without the work of the Rev. Jesse Jackson, a tireless advocate for civil rights, there would undoubtedly be even fewer minorities and women in the tech industry. Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Movidius has incorporated their Myriad 2 processor into a new USB device called the Fathom Neural Compute Stick. You can plug the Fathom into any USB-capable device and that device can begin to react cognitively and make its own decisions based on its programming. The key point is it can do this all natively—right on the stick. No call to the cloud is necessary. Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 In an effort to increase its competition with family entertainment juggernaut Disney, Comcast announced this morning that it will spend $3.8 billion to acquire DreamWorks Animation, home to popular kids’ franchises like “Shrek,” “Madagascar,” “How to Train Your Dragon,” “Kung Fu Panda,” and others. The deal will close by year-end, subject… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Communication startup Mast Mobile is launching on Android — specifically the Samsung Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 edge, Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 edge. The news is part of a broader partnership with Samsung, which has made a minority investment of undisclosed size in the company. In addition, Mast said it’s launching the first commercial integration with the Samsung Knox Cloud SDK, which… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 The just announced HP Chromebook 13 is a new take on the hardware side of Chrome OS — a premium system, with some specs reminiscent of Chrome OS laptops, but with the ultrabook spice seen on the market from Apple and Microsoft. Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Drug research giant AbbVie announced a deal to buy cancer drug startup Stemcentrx in a $5.8 billion cash and stock deal this morning. The terms of the deal include $2 billion in cash and $3.8 billion in stock upfront, plus another $4 billion in milestone-based payouts to StemCentrx, and $3.8 in stock. The deal values the company at up to $10.2 billion, according to a memo from… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 After Facebook’s stellar quarter, which sees users spending massive amounts of time on its mobile apps, including Facebook, Messenger and Instagram, the company announced this morning it’s bringing this popular trio of apps to Windows 10. Facebook and Messenger are now rolling out to Windows 10 on the desktop and Instagram is arriving on Windows 10 mobile. As you may expect,… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 A questionable Snapchat filter that lets users show off their speed while taking a selfie is being blamed for a serious car accident that left a man with traumatic brain injuries after being struck by a driver going over 100 MPH, according to a new lawsuit. The victim and his wife are now suing the teen driver, alleging her high-speed selfie-taking caused the crash. According to a report on… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Like so many organizations today, Infosys, the Indian consulting giant, is a company in transition. For years it has made a good living helping customers manage legacy tools, but CEO Vishal Sikka, who took over 21 months ago saw a shifting landscape and he began implementing new systems immediately. One of those changes involved developing a new artificial intelligence system they have… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 You know it’s not just any old Chromebook when Google and HP team up for the thing’s product launch. And indeed, the HP Chromebook 13 looks to be a pretty compelling alternative to the MacBook upgrade Apple ushered into the world last week. The laptop makes a compelling case both in terms of looks and muscle, sporting an all metal design and those sixth-gen Intel Core… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 You can now purchase August’s second generation Smartlock at Best Buy and Amazon, starting today. The much-anticipated Bluetooth-enabled device allows homeowners to lock and unlock their front door using an app and joins a host of other gadgets in the August Smart Home Access System, including a smart doorbell camera allowing you to see who’s at your front door from your phone, and… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 TechCrunch is hitting the road for the Summer and checking out some key global tech hubs to spread our Crunchie love all over you guys. Our world-famous TechCrunch Pitch-Off is a two-piece event. We invite a panel of investor judges to check out the very best startups in each city we visit. Each company has exactly 2 minutes to pitch their startup with no demos allowed. If you want to pitch,… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Oracle today announced that it is making an acquisition to (literally and figuratively) build out its Primavera project management and billing business: it is buying Textura, a provider of cloud-based contract and payment management solutions specifically for the construction industry. The all-cash deal, Oracle said, is worth $663 million, net of Textura’s existing cash. Oracle said… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 One of the major promises of virtual reality is the ability to find yourself transported to exotic locations. Nothing is quite so exotic as the final frontier. SpaceVR wants to launch high-definition 360-degree cameras into space so that users can experience the majesty of the cosmos on their virtual reality headsets. The small 5-person company just raised a $1.25 million Seed round led… Read More

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