Movado Group acquires watch startup MVMT

The Movado Group, which sells multiple brands, including Lacoste, Tommy Hilfiger and Hugo Boss, has purchased MVMT, a small watch company founded by Jacob Kassan and Kramer LaPlante in 2013. The company, which advertised heavily on Facebook, logged $71 million in revenue in 2017. Movado purchased the company for $100 million. “The acquisition of MVMT […]

YC-backed Sterblue aims to enable smarter drone inspections

As government regulation for commercial drone usage seems to be trending in a very positive direction for the companies involved, there is an ever-growing opportunity for drone startups to utilize artificial intelligence to deliver insights without requiring much human effort. Sterblue, a French drone software startup that is launching out of Y Combinator’s latest class […]

Crimson Hexagon regains Facebook data access

Analytics company Crimson Hexagon says Facebook has reinstated its data access to Facebook and Instagram. That access was suspended last month, with Facebook saying it was investigating whether the company had violated any of its data use policies. (The social network, of course, has been dealing with the fallout from a separate controversy over user […]

Facebook cracks down on opioid dealers after years of neglect

Facebook’s role in the opioid crisis could become another scandal following yesterday’s release of harrowing new statistics from the Center for Disease Control. It estimated there were nearly 30,000 synthetic opioid overdose deaths in the U.S. in 2017, up from roughly 20,000 the year before. When recreational drugs like Xanax and OxyContin are adulterated with […]

Credit Karma acquires mortgage platform Approved

Credit Karma, the service best known for providing free credit score monitoring and other financial advice (mostly to millennials), is getting into the mortgage business. The company today announced that it has acquired Approved, a mortgage platform that brings modern technology to a process that even today often still involves faxing documents back and forth. The […]

XYZPrinting announces the da Vinci Color Mini

XYZPrinting may have finally cracked the color 3D printing code. Their latest machine, the $1,599 da Vinci Color Mini is a full color printer that uses three CMY ink cartridges to stain the filament as it is extruded, allowing for up to 15 million color combinations. The printer is currently available for pre-order on Indiegogo […]

VR optics could help old folks keep the world in focus

The complex optics involved with putting a screen an inch away from the eye in VR headsets could make for smartglasses that correct for vision problems. These prototype “autofocals” from Stanford researchers use depth sensing and gaze tracking to bring the world into focus when someone lacks the ability to do it on their own. […]

Descartes Labs launches its geospatial analysis platform

Descartes Labs, a New Mexico-based geospatial analytics startup, today announced that its platform is now out of beta. The well-funded company already allowed businesses to analyze satellite imagery it pulls in from NASA and ESA and build predictive models based on this data, but starting today, it is adding weather data to its library, as well […]

Flowbox is a tool that makes it easy to build special effects

What do you get when you connect a bunch of filmmakers with a bunch of programmers? Something like Flowbox. Flowbox, which began life as a unique object-oriented programming language for visual effects, has grown into something truly powerful in the moviemaking industry. Run by Mikołaj Valencia​, Michał Urbańczyk​, Paweł Pietraszko, and Mat Bujalski, this Polish […]

Alphabet invests $375 million in Oscar Health

Google parent Alphabet has invested $375 million in next-gen health insurance company, Oscar Health. Google has been a longtime supporter of the six-year-old New York company, having previously invested in Oscar through its Capital G investment wing and Verily health and life sciences research wing. “Alphabet has invested in Oscar over many years and has […]

This robot maintains tender, unnerving eye contact

Humans already find it unnerving enough when extremely alien-looking robots are kicked and interfered with, so one can only imagine how much worse it will be when they make unbroken eye contact and mirror your expressions while you heap abuse on them. This is the future we have selected. The Simulative Emotional Expression Robot, or […]

‘Unhackable’ BitFi crypto wallet has been hacked

The BitFi crypto wallet was supposed to be unhackable and none other than famous weirdo John McAfee claimed that the device – essentially an Android-based mini tablet – would withstand any attack. Spoiler alert: it couldn’t. First, a bit of background. The $120 device launched at the beginning of this month to much fanfare. It […]

Revcontent is trying to get rid of misinformation with help from the Poynter Institute

CEO John Lemp recently said that thanks to a new policy, publishers in Revcontent‘s content recommendation network “won’t ever make a cent” on false and misleading stories — at least, not from the network. To achieve this, the company is relying on fact-checking provided by the Poynter Institute’s International Fact Checking Network. If any two independent […]

Y Combinator invests in HappiLabs to help scientists shop smarter

To create life-saving drugs or groundbreaking technological advancements, scientists first need the proper lab equipment. Everything from intricate and expensive specialized machines to beakers and rubber gloves must be sourced, price compared and ordered by a lab manager before even the first steps toward discovery can take place. But, says Tom Ruginis, CEO and founder […]

This happy robot helps kids with autism

A little bot named QTrobot from LuxAI could be the link between therapists, parents, and autistic children. The robot, which features an LCD face and robotic arms, allows kids who are overwhelmed by human contact to become more comfortable in a therapeutic setting. The project comes from LuxAI, a spin-off of the University of Luxembourg. […]

Samsung turns to Plume for new mesh Wi-Fi product line

Samsung today is announcing an updated version of its Wifi product line. The company partnered with Palo Alto-based Plume Design to provide software that powers the devices. According to Samsung, Plume’s platform uses artificial intelligence to allocate bandwidth across connected devices while delivering the best possible wi-fi coverage throughout a home. Plus, by using Plume, […]

The FDA OK’d an app as a form of birth control

Don’t want to get pregnant? There’s a Food and Drug Administration approved app for that. The FDA has just given the go ahead for Swedish app Natural Cycles to market itself as a form of birth control in the U.S. Natural Cycles was already in use as a way to prevent pregnancy in certain European […]

Understanding smartwatches

I was wrong. Several years ago I reviewed the first Garmin Fenix 3 smartwatch. This was before the release of the Apple Watch. That’s key to this story. I declared Garmin would have a hard time selling the Fenix 3. The Apple Watch would be better in every way, I pointed out. Therefore, there would […]

Openbook is the latest dream of a digital life beyond Facebook

As tech’s social giants wrestle with antisocial demons that appear to be both an emergent property of their platform power, and a consequence of specific leadership and values failures (evident as they publicly fail to enforce even the standards they claim to have), there are still people dreaming of a better way. Of social networking beyond outrage-fuelled […]

Blind loyalty

John Chen Contributor There is a secret behind every open office in Silicon Valley — and it isn’t the drain on productivity. Tech companies have been the vanguards for pushing corporate culture forward toward “radical transparency.” Mark Zuckerberg works in a fully transparent four-walled glass office surrounded by the rest of Facebook. Valve got rid […]

What the Facebook Crypto team could build

Facebook is invading the blockchain, but how? Back in May, Facebook formed a cryptocurrency team to explore the possibilities, and today it removed a roadblock to revealing its secret plans. Former head of Messenger David Marcus, who leads the Facebook Crypto team, today announced he was stepping down from the board of Coinbase, the biggest crypto […]

Grand Seiko is an homage to watchmaking’s past

The 1960s were a beautiful time for watches. Horology was in its prime and the great names we know and love today – Rolex, Omega, Cartier – were just one of many watchmakers churning out commodity products to a world that needed to tell the time. Their watches – simple, elegant, and mechanically complex – […]

New material design stores energy like an eagle

Auxetics are materials that store energy internally rather than bulging out. In this way they can store more energy when squeezed or struck and disperse it more regularly. Historically, however, these materials have had sharp corners that could break easily with enough pressure. Now researchers at Queen Mary University of London and University of Cambridge […]

Samsung announces Spotify as its go-to music partner

Samsung didn’t just unveil new devices like the Galaxy Home, the Galaxy Watch and of course the new Galaxy Note 9 at its Unpacked event this morning — it also announced a partnership with Spotify. The goal is to create a seamless cross-device listening experience on Samsung devices, including the ones announced today. As demonstrated […]

7 takeaways from Samsung Unpacked 2018

Samsung introduced a wide range of gadgets and upgrades today at its Unpacked event in Brooklyn. The overarching theme of the event centered on increased productivity throughout its connected ecosystem with performance improvements across the board. Here are seven takeaways from Samsung Unpacked: 1. Note 9 rumors are confirmed Samsung’s latest phablet was introduced this […]

Apple defends decision not to remove InfoWars’ app

Apple has commented on its decision to continue to allow conspiracy theorist profiteer InfoWars to live stream video podcasts via an app in its App Store, despite removing links to all but one of Alex Jones’ podcast content from its iTunes and podcast apps earlier this week. At the time Apple said the podcasts had violated […]

Facebook is shutting down Friend List Feeds today

Facebook is shutting down Friend List Feeds sometime today, according to a message posted in the Facebook app. The feature allowed users to scroll through only those posts from one of their designated friend lists — for example, family, work colleagues, neighbors, industry peers and so on. The end result was a much more personalized […]

Blissfully grabs $3.5 million seed investment to help companies get their SaaS in gear

Blissfully, a New York City startup that helps companies understand their SaaS usage inside their organizations, announced it has received a $3.5 million seed round. The investment was led by Hummer Winblad Venture Partners. Hubspot, Founder Collective, and several unnamed pre-seed investors also participated. They got a $1.5 million pre-seed investment, bringing the total so […]

Facebook builds its own AR games for Messenger video chat

Facebook is diving deeper into in-house game development with the launch of its own version of Snapchat’s multiplayer augmented reality video chat games. Today, Facebook Messenger globally launches its first two AR video chat games that you can play with up to six people. “Don’t Smile” is like a staring contest that detects if you […]

MessageBird offers single API for customer comms across WhatsApp, WeChat, Messenger and more

MessageBird, the Amsterdam-based cloud communications platform backed by Accel in the U.S. and Europe’s Atomico, is unveiling a new product today that aims to make it easier for enterprises to communicate with customers across various channels of their choosing. Dubbed “Programmable Conversations” (yes, really!), the product takes the form of a single API that unifies […]