Startups

Lego Mindstorms have paved the way for many programmable toys. And Austrian startup Robo Wunderkind is building a new kind of Lego-like programmable kit. The startup first launched on the TechCrunch Disrupt stage and just raised $1.2 million (€1 million) from SOSV, Austrian Federal Promotional Bank and multiple business angels. Compared to many programmable toys
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The rise of chatbots and smart speaker-powered voice assistants, such as Alexa and Google Home, has produced the need for specialist analytics so that developers can track how well those conversational interfaces are working. Hoping to take a chunk of this nascent market, including competing with Google’s own chatbot analytics product Chatbase, is Istanbul and
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Comet.ml allows data scientists and developers to easily monitor, compare and optimize their machine learning models. The New York-based company is launching its product today, after completing the TechStars-powered Amazon Alexa Accelerator program and raising a $2.3 million seed round led by Trilogy Equity partners, together with Two Sigma Ventures, Founders Co-Op, Fathom Capital, TechStars Ventures
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MIT is disassociating itself from Nectome, the Y Combinator-backed startup promising to preserve customers’ brains for the possibility of future digital upload. Co-founder Robert McIntyre described the procedure as “100 percent fatal” — it involves connecting terminally ill patients to a machine that pumps embalming fluids into their arteries. The company has collected (refundable) $10,000
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Robinhood is rolling out its Coinbase-killer that’s already helped the fintech startup’s valuation grow 4X in a year. Zero-fee trading of Bitcoin and Ethereum is now available to all investors in California, Massachusetts, Missouri, and Montana. Everyone else is still on the waitlist. Robinhood users everywhere can already track 16 crypto coins including BTC, ETH, Litecoin,
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As expected since February, Alibaba will buy all outstanding shares of Ele.me that it doesn’t already own. Best-known for food deliveries, Ele.me claims to be China’s biggest online delivery and local services platform. In an announcement, Alibaba said the deal values Ele.me at $9.5 billion. Alibaba, which first invested in Ele.me two years ago, and
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Uber is closing the doors on its on-demand package delivery service for merchants, RUSH, in New York City, San Francisco and Chicago, TechCrunch has learned. In an email to users, Uber said it plans to close RUSH operations June 30, 2018. “At Uber, we believe in making big bold bets, and while ending UberRUSH comes
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