Tag: Commerce

Animoca Brands raises $2.5 million for The Sandbox blockchain gaming platform

Animoca Brands has raised $2.5 million in funding for The Sandbox blockchain gaming platform. Animoca’s Pixowl division is remaking The Sandbox as a blockchain-enabled game, with user-generated content that players can buy and sell with real digital ownership, thanks to the blockchain, or a transparent and secure decentralized ledger. Animoca Brands and its subsidiary Pixowl […]

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Amazon shareholders decline to halt sale of facial recognition systems to governments

Amazon on Wednesday said shareholders rejected proposals to curb and audit its facial recognition service, just as members of Congress indicated there was bipartisan support to one day regulate the technology. In the past year Amazon has found itself at the center of a growing debate over the use of facial recognition by governments, with […]

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Huawei is just the latest in a long line of setbacks for Google’s Android

It has been a tumultuous week for Huawei, to put it mildly. Last Thursday, the U.S. added the Chinese tech titan to a trade blacklist as part of a growing effort to “secure the information and communications technology and services supply chain,” as President Trump’s Executive Order put it. While this naturally prevents any U.S. […]

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Bill.com launches AI platform for automated payments processing

In an era of widespread automation, it’s hard to believe manual data entry still constitutes a sizeable chunk of employees’ chores. According to a recent Salesforce survey, people at small and medium-sized businesses spend 23% of their workday manually inputting data. Another study — this one conducted by SoftwareAdvice.com — found the time sink to […]

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Instawork raises $18 million to match hospitality workers with employers

More than a third of U.S. workers — about 57 million people — are part of the so-called gig workforce, according to a recent Gallup poll. In fact, it’s estimated that on-demand jobs add $715 billion to the economy annually and that the contractor market exceeded $3.7 trillion globally in 2017. Business is booming for […]

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Voom targets escooter boom with on-demand insurance for per-trip coverage

Electric scooters, or escooters, were one of the big breakout trends in 2018, with hundreds of millions in investors’ cash plowed into the likes of Lime, Bird, Spin, and similar 4-letter-named mobility startups. With 2019 now well underway, the escooter hype-train trundles on with even more investments being made. The rise in urban micro-mobility transport isn’t limited […]

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Mapillary launches marketplace to expand coverage of its crowdsourced map images and data

Sweden’s Mapillary is creating a marketplace for street-level images and map data designed to serve specific needs of users while also making its core service more robust and complete. Mapillary is a collaborative platform that crowdsources its imagery from users who download its app and take street-level pictures with their smartphones. Those are then shared […]

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TransferWise valued at $3.5 billion after $292 million secondary funding

Money transfer service TransferWise is now valued at $3.5 billion, a figure it said it attained following a $292 million secondary funding round. The round, which saw no new shares issued or capital raised, is essentially a way for early investors and employees to cash in by selling some of their stock to newer investors. […]

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Comcast reportedly expanding into health care with new smart speaker

Comcast is reportedly developing a smart speaker-like device similar to Amazon’s Echo and Google’s Nest Home speakers with a health assistant focus, anonymous sources told CNBC. The expansion into health care is a first for the home cable and internet company that has more than 20 million customers. The ambient listening device will monitor things […]

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U.S. Senators propose legislation to fund national AI strategy

U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), and Brian Schatz (D-HI) today proposed the Artificial Intelligence Initiative Act, legislation to pump $2.2 billion into federal research and development and create a national AI strategy. The $2.2 billion would be doled out over the course of the next 10 years to federal agencies like the […]

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Huawei debuts Honor 20 series with quad camera and side-mounted fingerprint scanner

Huawei sub-brand Honor unveiled the latest of its flagship phones today at an event in London. The smartphone maker lifted the lid on the Honor 20 and Honor 20 Pro, which follow a week after it launched the lower-specced “Lite” incarnation. While Huawei would undoubtedly have liked the focus of today’s launch to have been […]

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Modsy raises $37 million for shoppable 3D room remodeling

Modsy, a San Francisco-based startup developing a platform that lets property owners create virtual renderings of rooms and restyle them in real time, today announced that it’s raised $37 million in funding led by TCV, with participation from Norwest Venture Partners, Advance Venture Partners, and Comcast Ventures. CEO and founder Shanna Tellerman said the capital […]

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Meal delivery kit company Sun Basket raises $30 million to roll out new food products

You can’t beat the convenience of ready-to-prep foodstuff delivered right to your doorstep, which is why analysts at Hexa Research predict the global meal kit delivery segment will reach $8.94 billion by 2025 (up 17.15% from 2017). Rockville, Maryland-based firm Packaged Facts reports that kit sales hit around $3.1 billion last year, and it’s anticipating […]

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Introducing the Conversational AI Summit. Focus will be on ROI

Conversational AI is arguably the most advanced and important application area for business AI right now. As such, it calls for a special focus. That’s why Transform, the “AI event of the year” will be launching the Conversational AI Summit, a new event within the two-day conference, held on July 10 & 11 in San […]

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Driverless truck startup TuSimple teams up with the USPS to haul trailers between Phoenix and Dallas

Self-driving vehicle startup TuSimple nabbed a notable new client recently: the United States Postal Service (USPS). This morning, the company revealed that the Postal Service has awarded it a contract to complete five round trips over the course of two weeks. TuSimple’s driverless trucks will haul trailers more than 1,000 miles between the Postal Service’s […]

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Google’s lung cancer detection AI outperforms 6 human radiologists

Google AI researchers working with Northwestern Medicine created an AI model capable of detecting lung cancer from screening tests better than human radiologists with an average of eight years experience. When analyzing a single CT scan, the model detected cancer 5% more often on average than a group of 6 human experts and 11% more […]

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Nvidia robotics researchers blur line between simulation and the real world

Nvidia AI researchers today introduced SimOpt, an AI system trained to transfer simulated work into real-world action to complete tasks like putting a peg in a hole and opening and closing a drawer. The SimOpt model, which relies on reinforcement learning, was created using Nvidia’s FleX physics simulation engine and more than 9,600 simulations, each […]

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Alphabet’s Wing will kick off Helsinki drone deliveries in summer 2019

Alphabet X Labs graduate Wing announced late last year that it’d soon begin piloting autonomous deliveries in Helsinki, Finland, and in a blog post this morning, it laid out a detailed roadmap. Wing says that in the coming weeks, it’ll deploy a small fleet of drones in the city’s Vuosaari district, where they’ll ferry provisions […]

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Amazon leads $575 million investment in food delivery network Deliveroo

London-headquartered food delivery company Deliveroo has raised $575 million in a series G round of funding led by Amazon, with participation from T Rowe Price, Fidelity Management and Research Company, and Greenoaks. This takes the company’s total funding to more than $1.5 billion since its inception in 2012. Though the company hasn’t revealed a valuation […]

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