posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
The latest perk of working at Facebook: getting to play the new Nintendo game Super Mario Maker a month before it comes out. Yesterday, Facebook hosted a hackathon where 100 employees built their own levels using Mario Maker. The game lets you make your own obstacle courses for the plumber using elements from Mario 1, 3, and Super Mario World. Teams competed for whose level was best. We saw… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 When Google officially launched its Android for Work program earlier this year, it had already signed up a wide range of partners to help bring Android for Work to market. Today, it is expanding this program by adding a new device manufacturer and — for the first time — carriers to its partner ecosystem. Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Diversity is a hot-button issue, and an issue that many tech companies can’t seem to figure out how to solve. That’s where Paradigm comes in. Paradigm works with fast-growing companies like Slack and Pinterest to help them identify where the biggest barriers to diversity are coming into play, Paradigm Founder and CEO Joelle Emerson tells me. It does this through both quantitative… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Following the launches of brand-centric services on sites like Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Google+, social media was the place for businesses to acquire new users and engage their fans. This seemed like an efficient way to get exposure: Businesses could essentially “rent” a spot on Facebook, much like a small shoe brand could rent a store in the mall to take advantage of… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Captain401, a service that helps small businesses set up a 401k, is launching out of Y Combinator today. The goal of Captain401 is basically to make managing 401ks as simple as other services have done for other functions within companies — and in a more digitally focused manner like Zenefits or Zenpayroll. Captain401 seeks to create a process that avoids funds that have higher fees and… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Smartwatch underdog Olio has raised a $10 million Series A led by New Enterprise Associates. The cash will go to expand Olio’s manufacturing prowess and bring on new hires for the budding company. In addition to the raise, the company has announced a number of new models including a 24 carat gold model for $1,195 on a leather strap. We first met Olio last March when they announced the… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 SimpleCitizen, an online tool that guides immigrants through the complex process of applying for citizenship, is launching today to make applying for a green card as simple as doing your taxes. Every year, 1.4 million people who have entered the U.S. for work, study or travel, apply for a green card to stay in the country, according to founder and CEO Sam Stoddard. Stoddard was prompted… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Amazon today announced it’s expanding its travel site Amazon Destinations to reach several new markets across the U.S, representing a doubling of its footprint since its launch in April this year. There are now more than double the number of destinations available for booking on the service, which includes hundreds of hotels across 35 cities and 6 larger metro regions, the… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Following its acquisition of food delivery service OrderUp earlier this month, Groupon is today announcing its own nationwide delivery and takeout service, Groupon To Go. The program is initially available in Chicago, where it has been in pilot testing with 500 restaurants since March, but the company says it will expand to other metro regions throughout the year, including Boston and Austin… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Sales workflow startup PersistIQ has raised $1.7 million in seed funding. This is one of those stories where the startup says it raised the money months ago, got busy and only decided to announce the news now. Investors in the seed round include Point Nine, Salesforce Ventures, Y Combinator and undisclosed angels. (PersistIQ was incubated last year at Y Combinator.) Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 UberPOP wasn’t the only victim of the recent taxi protests in France. Other ride-sharing companies Djump and Heetch were affected as well. While it’s still unclear what’s going to happen with Heetch, Djump will be joining French transportation company Chauffeur-Privé. Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Editor’s Note: Ruochen Huang is an intern at CrunchBase and an undergraduate at the University of California, Berkeley. These days the hardware you put in your ear can do much more than just play music. Although new technologies are just coming to market, the earworn wearables sector has companies developing products that change the way people perceive devices worn in and around the… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 After more than two years of restricting content creation to their in-house team, Cinematique, the touchable video platform, is releasing a beta version of a cloud-based Editor so brands can create their own interactive video content. As a refresher, Cinematique is a platform that overlays small interactive dots on top of video content, which can either be used for e-commerce or… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 The demographic of health-conscious consumers is growing rapidly, and yet there is no dominant online player that provides high quality, organic, natural products to those consumers. Thrive Market, an LA-based startup that just closed a $30 million Series A round, is looking to do just that. The company aims to be a hybrid of Whole Foods and Costco, where users pay $60/year for a membership… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 Glow, the app that aims to help women get pregnant (or not) launched a new iOS app for women’s sexual health today called Ruby. Ruby is similar to the other Glow family of products, but is tailored towards women’s general sexual health as opposed to just reproduction – because, well, there’s a lot more to us than our baby ovens. Sex ed for young women is woefully… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 The original trio behind popular U.K. TV show Top Gear will be back sooner rather than later as they signed a deal with Amazon. Amazon Prime members in the U.K. will be able to stream the new car show starting in 2016. Prime members in the U.S., Japan, Austria and Germany should get the new show as well as the company talks about a “global TV deal.” Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 CVS and IBM have teamed up to stop chronic diseases patients from having a medical emergency before it gets to that point. The corner store pharmacy giant will use Watson, IBM’s cognitive computing technology, to predict chronic disease patients in danger based on red flag behaviors. Watson is built on a similar learning process as the human brain. It observes the data, interprets it… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 PicMonkey, a Seattle-based photo editing web app just secured a $41 million growth equity investment from Spectrum Equity. This is the three-year-old company’s first ever round of outside funding, the site has bootstrapped its way into profitability. “PicMonkey has grown from the ground up into a profitable business without a single round of outside funding,” Jonathan… Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
 GoButler has a straightforward premise — you should be able to send a text message and one of its “Heroes” will help you get whatever you need, whether you want to order dinner or make a flight reservation. Today, the startup is announcing that it has moved out of beta testing and is available in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Read More

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posted 3 days ago on techcrunch
FreedomPop, the U.S. wireless carrier startup that has been building a business based on completely free voice and data services, has raised another $10 million in funding from two strategic investors, the pan-Asian mobile carrier Axiata and an unnamed tech investor based in the U.S., the company is announcing today. The deal with Axiata will mean that FreedomPop will be expanding its… Read More

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posted 4 days ago on techcrunch
 Vaniday, the online marketplace for beauty and wellness professionals co-founded by e-commerce behemoth and ‘startup builder’ Rocket Internet, has bagged its first major round of funding. Read More

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posted 4 days ago on techcrunch
 Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, is one of the densest cities in the world. Since real estate is at a premium, stores are often tiny and carry very limited inventory. Backed by Y Combinator and 500 Startups, Chaldal currently stocks over 4,000 products in its two warehouses, which it delivers in about an hour, and hopes to become the “Amazon Fresh of Dhaka.” Read More

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posted 4 days ago on techcrunch
 SoftBank will start taking pre-orders for the enterprise model of its humanoid robot, Pepper, on October 1. The company revealed today “Pepper for Biz” will cost 55,000 yen (about $440 a month) per month to rent. Contracts are for 36 months, so businesses have to spend a total of about $15,940 in rental charges. Read More

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posted 4 days ago on techcrunch
 Sony today reported a $780 million operating profit for Q1 2015 as the company’s camera sensor business and PlayStation 4 arm helped it beat analyst expectations. Read More

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posted 4 days ago on techcrunch
 Jun Group was founded back in 2005, but according to founder and CEO Mitchell Reichgut, the video ad company has never accepted any venture funding — until now. “We really have been independent since day one,” Reichgut said. (Jun Group has taken money from Western Technology Investment, but it was debt, not equity financing.) Read More

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