Insurance app Lemonade looks set to drop lawsuit against Germany’s Wefox

Lemonade, the New York-based insurance platform, looks set to drop the lawsuit it filed against German company ONE Insurance, its parent company Wefox, and Wefox founder Julian Teicke. The complaint, filed in the U.S. District Court Southern District of NY, alleged that Wefox reverse engineered Lemonade to create ONE, infringed Lemonade’s intellectual property, violated the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, and breached the contract in Lemonade’s terms of service. At the time of the filing, a statement issued on behalf for Wefox said the allegations had no merit and “ultimately…

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Virus shuts down factories of major iPhone component manufacturer TSMC

Virus shuts down factories of major iPhone component manufacturer TSMC

Apple touts the cybersecurity of its iPhone, but less can be said for the exclusive manufacturer who makes the processor for the iPhone. Semiconductor foundry TSMC, or Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, was hit by a virus late Friday night, which forced it to shut down several factories according to Debbie Wu at Bloomberg. The virus and the shutdown were confirmed by TSMC representatives. It is not clear at this time which factories were hit, or whether those factories were producing the iPhone’s main processor. Apple is expected to unveil new…

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JetLenses aims to save you a bunch of money on your contacts

JetLenses aims to save you a bunch of money on your contacts

A Y Combinator-backed startup, JetLenses, is taking on the major contact lens e-commerce sites, like 1-800-Contacts, Lens.com, and other online ordering systems offered by major retailers, such as Walmart. The startup’s goal is to bring down the cost of prescription products by automating the overhead associated with these businesses, in areas like prescription verification, order tracking, compliance and fulfillment, then pass those savings on to customers. The company also promises fair and transparent pricing, so there aren’t surprises at checkout, and offers customers free shipping on their orders. JetLenses was…

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Kin expands its celebrity-driven ‘neighborhood’ model for online video

Kin expands its celebrity-driven ‘neighborhood’ model for online video

Digital media company Kin has announced a slate of new video series from singer/actress Jordin Sparks, Bachelorette JoJo Fletcher and Jordan Rodgers (who successfully proposed to Fletcher over on the series). The company also revealed more details about its programming with Vanessa Lachey (who had already signed on with her husband Nick). She’ll be hosting a competition series called Beauty School Knockout, where contestants compete to create specific looks using unconventional products. This is all part of what the company calls its “neighborhood” strategy, where it launches a set of interconnected…

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Sagewise pitches a service to verify claims and arbitrate disputes over blockchain transactions

Sagewise pitches a service to verify claims and arbitrate disputes over blockchain transactions

Sometimes smart contracts can be pretty dumb. All of the benefits of a cryptographically secured, publicly verified, anonymized transaction system can be erased by errant code, malicious actors, or poorly defined parameters of an executable agreement. Hoping to beat back the tide of bad contracts, bad code and bad actors, Sagewise, a new Los Angeles-based startup has raised $1.25 million to bring to market a service that basically hits pause on the execution of a contract so it can be arbitrated in the event that something goes wrong. Co-founded by a…

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Foundry Group quietly announces a big fat $750 million fund

Foundry Group quietly announces a big fat $750 million fund

Foundry Group, the Boulder, Co.-based venture firm cofounded 11 years ago by startup whisperer Brad Feld, has raised a $750 million seventh fund to target early-stage and growth-stage companies, as well as to invest in other venture funds. It sounds like — and is — a lot of money, though the firm notes that it encompasses all of its various investment strategies, whereas its last fund, a $500 million vehicle that it closed in 2016, was used to invest in other venture funds and growth-stage companies alone; Foundry was separately managing its early-stage bets in a…

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Will self-driving cars kill parking?

Will self-driving cars kill parking?

Jeff Peters Contributor Share on Twitter Jeff Peters, PhD is a principal at Autotech Ventures, investing in transportation startups. He has published academic and media articles on transportation, optimization, autonomous driving and AI. More posts by this contributor The AI in your non-autonomous car Some people have postulated that autonomous ridesharing cars will never need to park and cities of the future will not need street parking, parking lots or parking garages. But parking is far from dead. In fact, the $100 billion market may be poised to grow. We’ve heard from parking startup…

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Apple Pay is finally coming to CVS and 7-Eleven, and will soon expand to Germany

Apple Pay is finally coming to CVS and 7-Eleven, and will soon expand to Germany

Longtime Apple Pay holdout CVS will finally be adding support for Apple’s mobile payments platform this fall, along with 7-Eleven, Apple CEO Tim Cook said this afternoon on the company’s earnings call. The news is particularly notable because CVS was one of the first major retailers to snub Apple Pay, choosing instead to launch its own barcode-based mobile payments solution “CVS Pay” back in 2016, following the failure of the retailer-backed Apple Pay rival CurrentC. CVS Pay had become the first mobile payments solution the pharmacy chain adopted, after having…

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Dixons Carphone now says ~8.8M more customers affected by 2017 breach

Dixons Carphone now says ~8.8M more customers affected by 2017 breach

A Dixons Carphone data breach that was disclosed earlier this summer was worse than initially reported. The company is now saying that personal data of 10 million customers could also have been accessed when its systems were hacked. The European electronics and telecoms retailer believes its systems were accessed by unknown and unauthorized person/s in 2017, although it only disclosed the breach in June, after discovering it during a review of its security systems. Last month it said 5.9M payment cards and 1.2M customer records had been accessed. But with its investigation…

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MoviePass is down again

Το MoviePass προσφέρει επιστροφή χρημάτων μετά την Παρασκευή νύχτας

After the revelation that MoviePass borrowed $5 million to keep its service up and running last week, things aren’t looking good. MoviePass subscribers, myself included, were met on Monday with a blank screen where their choice of screening should be. Navigating around dozens of theaters only shows a message that “There are no more screenings at this theater today.” Twitter noticed too and people are starting to sound the death knell for the beleaguered monthly movie subscription service. Some MoviePass theaters that offer e-ticketing still appear to have available showings…

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WeWork is just one facet of SoftBank’s bet on real estate

WeWork is just one facet of SoftBank’s bet on real estate

This week WeWork announced that its Chinese subsidiary — WeWork China — raised an additional $500 million in capital in a deal led by SoftBank, Temasek Holdings and others. The deal reportedly values the Chinese branch of the shared workspace and real estate management company at $5 billion, up from $1 billion (post-money) in the round WeWork China announced almost a year ago in July 2017. SoftBank rarely doubles down on a particular company. At time of writing, SoftBank itself has made 175 investments in 144 different companies, according to Crunchbase data. Of those,…

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Belle Haven & Friendly Acres Over 13s Youth Club Newsletter

Belle Haven & Friendly Acres Over 13s Youth Club Newsletter

[Sponsor message] [Sponsor message] [Sponsor message] Hey KIDS! [Sponsor message] [Boztank pls insert ‘hey kids’ GIF here] [Sponsor message] Exciting News! First up: Exciting news! We’re going to be migrating the Club Newsletter to a new format from next month that will be delivered in person! In virtual reality! This means you’ll be able to feel like I’m sitting right next to you saying this stuff right in your face instead of just passively reading it off a screen and maybe getting distracted by other less important stuff. Myself and your…

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Home run exits happen stealthily for biotech

Home run exits happen stealthily for biotech

Joanna Glasner Contributor More posts by this contributor While tech waffles on going public, biotech IPOs boom Shoe startups aren’t dragging their feet Startup exit tallies commonly underestimate biotech returns. Unlike most tech deals, the biggest profits in bio often come long after an IPO or acquisition. Take Juno Therapeutics, a publicly traded cancer immunology company that sold to pharma giant Celgene this year for $9 billion. At first glance, it doesn’t seem like a deal that would impact Juno’s early investors. After all, Juno went public back in 2014. Though…

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Twitter will suspend repeat offenders posting abusive comments on Periscope live streams

Twitter will suspend repeat offenders posting abusive comments on Periscope live streams

As part of Twitter’s attempted crackdown on abusive behavior across its network, the company announced on Friday afternoon a new policy facing those who repeatedly harass, threaten or otherwise make abusive comments during a Periscope broadcaster’s live stream. According to Twitter, the company will begin to more aggressively enforce its Periscope Community Guidelines by reviewing and suspending accounts of habitual offenders. The plans were announced via a Periscope blog post and tweet that said everyone should be able to feel safe watching live video. We’re committed to making sure everyone…

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LG Mobile’s losses continue but now sales are falling too

LG Mobile’s losses continue but now sales are falling too

Korean electronics giant LG is soaring to new heights, but its mobile division continues to lag well behind the rest of the company and the signs aren’t promising. LG’s latest financials released today recorded another quarter of success with operating profit jumping 16 percent year-on-year to hit KRW 771 billion ($715.1 million) as overall sales rose 3.2 percent across the group. LG said its sales and profit for the first half of 2018 are at all-time highs but — and you knew a but was coming… — its smartphone division remains…

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Market research firm GlobalWebIndex takes first VC with $40M Series A

Market research firm GlobalWebIndex takes first VC with $40M Series A

Market research firm GlobalWebIndex, which provides consumer insight data for marketing purposes for customers including Google, Spotify, WPP, IPG and Omnicom Group, has closed a $40 million Series A round. The funding is its first VC raise, almost a decade after the business was founded. The investment comes from New York-based growth fund Stripes Group, along with a number of other unnamed data, software and consumer technology companies. GWI says it will be used to accelerate product development and for international expansion, including in the U.S. and Asia.  The company is based in London…

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Figure Eight partners with Google to give AutoML developers better training data

Figure Eight partners with Google to give AutoML developers better training data

Figure Eight, a platform that helps developers train, test and fine-tune their machine learning models, today announced a major new collaboration with Google that essentially turns Figure Eight into the de facto standard for creating and annotating machine learning data for Google Cloud’s AutoML service. As Figure Eight’s CEO Robin Bordoli told me, Google had long been a customer, but the two companies decided to work closer together now that AutoML is launching in beta and expanding its product portfolio, too. As Bordoli argues, training data remains one of the…

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Taking the pain out of accounting and payroll for small businesses, ScaleFactor raises $10 million

Taking the pain out of accounting and payroll for small businesses, ScaleFactor raises $10 million

ScaleFactor, the Techstars alumnus that’s selling accounting and payroll management software as a service, has raised $10 million in a new round of funding as it looks to scale up its sales and marketing efforts. Founded by longtime accountant, Kurt Rathmann, the Austin-based company has created a software service that collects and analyzes data from point of sale systems, bank accounts, credit cards and billing systems, to automate recordkeeping and payroll functions. Rathmann, a former KPMG employee, started ScaleFactor after seeing the lack of innovation in the backoffice functions that…

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Google launches its first WeChat mini program as its China experiments continue

Google launches its first WeChat mini program as its China experiments continue

Google is continuing to test new strategies in China after the U.S. search giant released its first mini program for WeChat, the country’s hugely popular messaging app. WeChat is used by hundreds of millions of Chinese people daily for services that stretch beyond chat to include mobile payments, bill paying, food delivery and more. Tencent, the company that operates WeChat, added mini programs last year and they effectively operate like apps that are attached to the service. That means that users bypass Google Play or Apple’s App Store and install them…

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Online learning platform Unacademy gets $21M Series C from Sequoia India, SAIF and Nexus

Online learning platform Unacademy gets $21M Series C from Sequoia India, SAIF and Nexus

Unacademy founders Roman Saini, Gaurav Munjal and Hemesh Singh Bangalore-based Unacademy will add more educators to its online learning platform, which claims to be India’s largest, after closing a $21 million Series C. The funding comes from Sequoia India, SAIF Partners and Nexus Venture Partners, with participation from Blume Ventures (all four firms are returning from Unacademy’s Series B last year). Originally a YouTube channel created in 2010 by Gaurav Munjal, Unacademy was officially launched as a startup in 2015 by founders Munjal, Roman Saini and Hemesh Singh. It has…

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There’s now just one Blockbuster remaining in the US

There’s now just one Blockbuster remaining in the US

And then there was one. With the impending closures of Blockbuster locations in Anchorage and Fairbanks, Alaska, just one single store will remain in the country, Anchorage Daily News reported yesterday. The two locations in Alaska will officially close their respective doors on July 16, leaving just one location in Bend, Ore. “…it is sad to say goodbye to our dedicated customers,” Blockbuster Alaska General Manager Kevin Daymude said in a Facebook post announcing the closures. “Both [the district manager] and I have been with the company since 1991 and have…

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For the first time, Netflix tops HBO for most Emmy nominations

For the first time, Netflix tops HBO for most Emmy nominations

Netflix has broken HBO’s 17-year streak as the most nominated network at the Emmy Awards. In the nominations released this afternoon, Netflix came out slightly ahead, with 112 nominations compared to HBO’s 108. Those include Best Comedy nods for GLOW and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, as well as Best Drama nominations for The Crown and Stranger Things. Other Netflix shows got some love as well. Jordan Crook, my co-host on the Original Content podcast, will be glad to know that Jason Bateman was nominated for his work as both actor and…

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Netskope nabs Sift Security to enhance infrastructure cloud security

Η BitSight, ένας προμηθευτής αξιολογήσεων ασφαλείας, ανεβάζει $ 60 εκατ. Με αποτίμηση περίπου 600 εκατ. Δολαρίων

Netskope, a company that focuses on security in the cloud, announced today it has acquired Sift Security, a startup launched in 2014 to help secure cloud infrastructure services like Amazon, Microsoft and Google using machine learning. The company did not share terms of the deal, but Sift’s 10 technical employees will become part of Netskope’s 500+ person team and Sift CEO Neil King will lead the Netskope IaaS product management team moving forward. While Netskope provides comprehensive cloud and website security from a single interface, Sift uses machine learning to…

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AT&T takes stake in AR company Magic Leap with exclusive distribution deal

AT&T takes stake in AR company Magic Leap with exclusive distribution deal

After spending the last couple of weeks closing the deal to buy TimeWarner for $85 billion and buying ad firm AppNexus for up to $2 billion, today AT&T announced a key distribution move in its new bid to be a media powerhouse: it’s taking a strategic investment into Magic Leap, the high profile augmented reality startup, which will include becoming the exclusive “wireless distributor” of Magic Leap products in the U.S. Magic Leap has raised more than $2 billion to develop its hardware and software, but it has yet to…

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Technology in healthcare is moving from mainframes to iPhones

Technology in healthcare is moving from mainframes to iPhones

Justin Butler Contributor Share on Twitter Justin Butler is a partner at Eclipse Venture Capital. New technologies are often first manifested in behemoth machines that may take up entire rooms, only to be miniaturized as the technology matures. We have witnessed this shift over the last 70 years in computers, and an analogous trend is now underway in healthcare. Startups across the world are transforming capabilities that were once relegated to specialty labs with large, expensive capital equipment and highly trained technicians. For example, in the early 2000s, Celera Genomics…

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In the public sector, algorithms need a conscience

In the public sector, algorithms need a conscience

Brian Brackeen Contributor Share on Twitter Brian Brackeen is the chief executive officer of the facial recognition software developer Kairos. In a recent MIT Technology Review article, author Virginia Eubanks discusses her book Automating Inequality.  In it, she argues that the poor are the testing ground for new technology that increases inequality— highlighting that when algorithms are used in the process of determining eligibility for/allocation of social services, it creates difficulty for people to get services, while forcing them to deal with an invasive process of personal data collection. I’ve spoken…

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Musk’s mini sub “not practical” for Thai cave boys rescue

Musk’s mini sub “not practical” for Thai cave boys rescue

Billionaire SpaceX founder Elon Musk tweeted at the weekend to say he was working with cave experts to build a mini submarine out of rocket parts that he thought could help a rescue effort to free 12 boys and their soccer coach trapped for weeks in a flooded underground cave complex in Thailand. In the last few minutes, it’s just been confirmed that an eleventh boy has been brought out of the cave complex by the divers. However Musk’s unasked for experimental ‘escape pod’ device has not been involved in the…

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China’s largest music streaming business is planning a US IPO

Fresh from Spotify’s unique direct listing in the U.S., another huge streaming service is about to follow suit and go public in America. Tencent Music Entertainment (TME) has nothing like the global profile of Spotify, but China’s top streaming service is heading for the U.S. public markets according to a filing made this weekend by parent company Tencent, the $500 billion Chinese internet giant which plans to spin the music business out. At this point, specific financial details around the listing aren’t being released, but past reports have suggested that…

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Index Ventures closes 2 funds, $1B for growth rounds and $650M for early-stage investing

Index Ventures closes 2 funds, $1B for growth rounds and $650M for early-stage investing

Make way for more money into the startup investing pool: today, Index Ventures announced that it has closed a total of $1.65 billion in new funds — $1 billion that it plans to invest in later-stage, growth rounds, and $650 million that it plans to put into earlier rounds for smaller startups. The venture fund is Index’s ninth; the growth round is its fourth since it was founded in 1996. The funding is significant for a couple of reasons. Index is one of Europe’s (and America’s) most prominent investors, backing…

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Apple’s Shortcuts will flip the switch on Siri’s potential

Apple’s Shortcuts will flip the switch on Siri’s potential

Matthew Cassinelli Contributor Share on Twitter Matthew Cassinelli is a former member of the Workflow team and works as an independent writer and consultant. He previously worked as a data analyst for VaynerMedia. At WWDC, Apple pitched Shortcuts as a way to ”take advantage of the power of apps” and ”expose quick actions to Siri.” These will be suggested by the OS, can be given unique voice commands, and will even be customizable with a dedicated Shortcuts app. But since this new feature won’t let Siri interpret everything, many have been…

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