Google denies Pixel 5a 5G cancelation, confirming it’s coming this year

Sometimes you’ve just got to confirm an unannounced product to put the rumors to bed, I guess. That was Google’s strategy this afternoon, following earlier rumors from Android Central that a chip shortage had put the kibosh on the mid-budget phone. In a comment to TechCrunch, a Google spokesperson noted, “Pixel 5a 5G is not […]

APKPure app contained malicious adware, say researchers

Security researchers say APKPure, a widely popular app for installing older or discontinued Android apps from outside of Google’s app store, contained malicious adware that flooded the victim’s device with unwanted ads. Kaspersky Lab said that it alerted APKPure on Thursday that its most recent app version, 3.17.18, contained malicious code that siphoned off data […]

NLPCloud.io helps devs add language processing smarts to their apps

While visual ‘no code‘ tools are helping businesses get more out of computing without the need for armies of in-house techies to configure software on behalf of other staff, access to the most powerful tech tools — at the ‘deep tech’ AI coal face — still requires some expert help (and/or costly in-house expertise). This […]

Claiming a landmark in fusion energy, TAE Technologies sees commercialization by 2030

In a small industrial park located nearly halfway between Los Angeles and San Diego, one company is claiming to have hit a milestone in the development of a new technology for generating power from nuclear fusion. The twenty year old fusion energy technology developer TAE Technologies said its reactors could be operating at commercial scale […]

Formation raises $4M led by Andreessen Horowitz to train truly ‘exceptional’ software engineers

Sophie Zhou Novati worked as a senior engineer at Facebook and then Nextdoor, where she struggled to hire great engineers for her team. Frustrated, she decided to try training engineers to meet her team’s hiring standards by mentoring at a local coding bootcamp. After two and a half years of mentoring on nights and weekends, […]

Daily Crunch: Google I/O will return virtually next month

Google announces its I/O plans, Facebook tests an audio Q&A feature and Patreon triples its valuation. This is your Daily Crunch for April 7, 2021. The big story: Google I/O will return virtually next month Google canceled its giant developer conference last year during the pandemic. This year, the show will return in virtual form, […]

ShareChat valued at $2.1 billion in $502 million fundraise

ShareChat said on Thursday it has raised a new financing round that values it at over $2 billion, joining four other local startups in attaining the unicorn status this week. The Indian social network said it has raised $502 million in a new financing round — Series E — led by Tiger Global that valued […]

Google I/O will return as a virtual event May 18-20

When the pandemic arrived in the U.S. early last year, companies scrambled to figure out what to do with their long-standing, in-person developer events. For Apple and Microsoft, that meant going virtual — something companies have done with mixed results. For Google, it meant calling off I/O all together. The company canceled the developer conference […]

UK’s Digital Markets Unit starts work on pro-competition reforms

A new UK public body that will be tasked with helping regulate the most powerful companies in the digital sector to ensure competition thrives online and consumers of digital services have more choice and control over their data has launched today. The Digital Markets Unit (DMU), which was announced in November last year — following […]

Google Cloud joins the FinOps Foundation

Google Cloud today announced that it is joining the FinOps Foundation as a Premier Member. The FinOps Foundation is a relatively new open-source foundation, hosted by the Linux Foundation, that launched last year. It aims to bring together companies in the “cloud financial management” space to establish best practices and standards. As the term implies, […]

Facebook’s Kustomer buy could face EU probe after merger referral

The European Union may investigate Facebook’s $1BN acquisition of customer service platform Kustomer after concerns were referred to it under EU merger rules. A spokeswoman for the Commission confirmed it received a request to refer the proposed acquisition from Austria under Article 22 of the EU’s Merger Regulation — a mechanism which allows Member States […]

Daily Crunch: The Supreme Court sides with Google in Oracle suit

The Supreme Court announces several tech-related rulings, LG will shut down its smartphone business and we take a deep dive into the story of StockX. This is your Daily Crunch for April 5, 2021. The big story: The Supreme Court sides with Google in Oracle suit The U.S. Supreme Court announced a couple of tech-related […]

Clarence Thomas plays a poor devil’s advocate in floating First Amendment limits for tech companies

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas flaunted a dangerous ignorance regarding matters digital in an opinion published today. In attempting to explain the legal difficulties of social media platforms, particularly those arising from Twitter’s ban of Trump, he makes an ill-informed, bordering on bizarre, argument as to why such companies may need their First Amendment rights […]

The Supreme Court sided with Google in its epic copyright fight against Oracle

The highest court in the land has a lot to say about tech this week. The Supreme Court weighed in on Google’s long legal battle with Oracle on Monday, overturning a prior victory for the latter company that could have resulted in an $8 billion award. In a 6-2 decision, the court ruled that Google […]

Fueled by pandemic, contactless mobile payments to surpass half of all smartphone users in US by 2025

Among other technology trends accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, the use of contactless mobile payments boomed in 2020. According to a recent report by analyst firm eMarketer, in-store mobile payments usage grew 29% last year in the U.S., as the pandemic pushed consumers to swap out cash and credit cards for the presumably safer mobile […]

Backflip offers an easier way to turn used electronics into cold, hard cash

Mike Barile spent two years and racked up nearly $20,000 in credit card debt to bring his first startup, Backflip, to life. The former management consultant had spent years toiling in the startup grind, first at Uber, then, after taking a coding academy bootcamp through AppAcademy (where Barile met his co-founder, Adam Foosaner), at Google […]

Apple adds two brand new Siri voices and will no longer default to a female or male voice in iOS

Apple is adding two new voices to Siri’s English offerings, and eliminating the default ‘female voice’ selection in the latest beta version of iOS. This means that every person setting up Siri will choose a voice for themselves and it will no longer default to the voice assistant being female, a topic that has come […]

Daily Crunch: Google starts testing its cookie alternative

Google tries out new ad targeting technology, PayPal adds cryptocurrency support and Substack raises additional funding. This is your Daily Crunch for March 30, 2021. The big story: Google starts testing its cookie alternative Google announced today that it has begun rolling out a new technology called Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoC) in a developer […]

Google’s Area 120 launches Stack, an app that digitizes personal docs and extracts key information

Google’s in-house incubator, Area 120, is today releasing its latest project called Stack, an app that will help you digitize your documents, receipts and other papers you have lying around the house, and then automatically save them to Google Drive. The app will also helpfully suggest a name for your scans and the right category […]

Google starts trialing its FLoC cookie alternative in Chrome

Google today announced that it is rolling out Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoC), a crucial part of its Privacy Sandbox project for Chrome, as a developer origin trial. FLoC is meant to be an alternative to the kind of cookies that advertising technology companies use today to track you across the web. Instead of a […]

Google Nest Hub 2 review: The solid smart screen adds sleep tracking

Two-and-a-half years later, the Nest Home Hub remains one of my favorite smart screens on the market. Maybe that’s a commentary on the rate of improvement in the category, or maybe Google just got things pretty right the first time out. It remains one of the best-looking products on the market, built from solid but […]

Google alum startup Cartken and REEF Technology launch Miami’s first delivery robots

Self-driving and robotics startup Cartken has partnered with REEF Technology, a startup that operates parking lots and neighborhood hubs, to bring self-driving delivery robots to the streets of downtown Miami. With this announcement, Cartken officially comes out of stealth mode. The company, founded by ex-Google engineers and colleagues behind the unrequited Bookbot, was formed to […]

This Week in Apps: App Store bills gets ghosted, Dispo drama, Facebook’s Clubhouse clone

Welcome back to This Week in Apps, the weekly TechCrunch series that recaps the latest in mobile OS news, mobile applications and the overall app economy. The app industry is as hot as ever, with a record 218 billion downloads and $143 billion in global consumer spend in 2020. Consumers last year also spent 3.5 trillion minutes using apps on Android […]

A new Android spyware masquerades as a ‘system update’

Security researchers say a powerful new Android malware masquerading as a critical system update can take complete control of a victim’s device and steal their data. The malware was found bundled in an app called “System Update” that had to be installed outside of Google Play, the app store for Android devices. Once installed by […]

Google backs one-year-old Indian startup DotPe in $27.5 million fundraise

Google’s latest investment in India is a startup that is helping businesses come online. One-year-old DotPe, a Gurgaon-based startup, said on Friday it has raised $27.5 million in its Series A financing round. The round was led by PayU, with participation from existing investor Info Edge Ventures and Google. The young startup, now valued at […]

European branded payments startup Recharge raises $11.8M debt round led by Kreos Capital

Online branded payments now run the gamut of anything from Spotify vouchers, Netflix vouchers, Neosurf, PaySafe cards, and everything in between. Consumers use them to pay for a variety of things. In Europe, they are an increasingly big business. Now, European branded payments fintech Recharge.com has raised €10 million ($11.8 million) in a debt funding […]