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Alienware’s 13 R3 is testament to small and powerful VR-capable laptops

Alienware’s latest offering is the smallest powerhouse laptop produced by the company. The 13 R3 is extremely compact for a VR-compatible system, but portability comes at a premium. Even so, the laptop has a lot to offer for gamers and everyday users outside of virtual reality. Especially since its …

Laptops

Tech War: Prius Prime vs. Hyundai Ioniq

By a lucky coincidence, I had a chance to drive both the 2017 Prius Prime and the 2017 Hyundai Ioniq in the same week. The Prius Prime is a plug-in hybrid with a futuristic vibe; the Hyundai Ioniq comes in hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and electric versions.<p>The Prius lineup and the Ioniq lineup are …

Transportation

Instagram VP Kevin Weil joins board of social fitness app Strava

If you’re trying to build the Instagram for exercise, it helps to have the guy building Instagram for Instagram on your side. That’s Strava has added Instagram VP of Product Kevin Weil to its board of directors. Formerly VP of product for Twitter, Weil has proven his skills through a rapid set of …

Startups

The implications of the end of net neutrality

When Donald Trump pulled off a stunning victory to win the U.S. presidency, the entire world began to speculate about what a Trump administration will look like. As the chief executive of a native advertising network, I — and many others that work in digital media — am keeping a particularly close …

Net Neutrality

What’s next for books?

I like Digital Reader editor Nate Hoffelder. He is one of the few bloggers about publishing who doesn’t suck up to the industry nor does he particularly gild the lily. He basically believes that books are great, publishing is probably doomed, and that writing is really important.<p>That’s why I was …

Publishing

HoverSurf launches its hoverbike

Fluffy dog tails could be the next step in robot-human interaction

The IEEE unearthed a fascinating 2013 study that showed that a cute dog tail does more than just amuse – it can communicate.<p>The study, created by Ashish Singh and James Young, posited that a Roomba with a tail attached could communicate quickly and easily with a human – a fast, excited wag means …

Robots

WhatsApp launches Status, an encrypted Snapchat Stories clone

WhatsApp could put the brakes on Snapchat’s international growth with today’s launch of WhatsApp Status, a new tab for sharing decorated photos, videos, and GIFs that disappear after 24 hours. It’s another Facebook-owned Snapchat Stories copycat, but the twist is that it’s end-to-end encrypted like …

Snapchat

What to expect at Mobile World Congress 2017

This year’s CES didn’t offer much in the way of mobile excitement. No surprise, really. The past several years have seen many of the biggest players in the space opt for their own stage to make big announcements — or just hold off a month and a half for the year’s biggest smartphone show, in …

Mobile World Congress

Monzo, a UK digital-only bank, is closing in on new funding led by U.S.-based Thrive Capital

Monzo, one of a number of new digital only or so-called ‘challenger’ banks in the U.K. aiming to re-invent the current account, is closing in on new funding, which could be announced as early as this week.<p>According to multiple sources, U.S.-based Thrive Capital is leading the round. However, I’ve …

Startups

ZTE kills its crowdsourced phone Kickstarter campaign

Project CSX was a nice enough idea. Get the smartphone community engaged and excited and maybe even gather some good, outside-the-box ideas for mobile devices along the way. In a sense, the project was ZTE’s attempt to foster the sort of community excitement we’ve seen around young companies like …

Phones

Hey Alexa, does this look infected?

Once you’re done ordering pizza and locking and unlocking your front door, what’s left to do with your Echo? Starting today, HealthTap users will be able to use Amazon’s connected home assistant for medical advice, if they so choose.<p>The online healthcare startup is announcing Alexa integration this …

Automation

Snap starts selling Spectacles online in the US for $130

Snap wants to prove to investors in its upcoming IPO that Spectacles can earn money for its business, not just be a brand stunt. So today, Snap began selling Spectacles openly online for $129.99 in the US at Spectacles.com after previously only dispensing them from Snapbot vending machines in …

Social Media

Temasek jumps into China’s bike rental startup war with investment in MoBike

Temasek, Singapore’s state-owned investment firm, has jumped into China’s on-demand cycle war after it backed MoBike.<p>China’s ride-sharing war is last year’s news. The big battle between Uber and Didi Chuxing is essentially over after the latter agreed to buy the former’s China-based business. The …

Startups

Alibaba’s Ant Financial extends global reach with first investment in the Philippines

Alibaba affiliate Ant Financial has again extended its global reach after it completed its maiden investment in the Philippines.<p>The company, which manages payment service Alipay and Alibaba’s digital banking services and is valued at $60 million, said it made an undisclosed investment in Mynt, a …

FinTech

Malaysia’s Dah Makan raises $1.3M for an organized approach to food delivery

Dah Makan has become the first food delivery startup to raise significant capital in Southeast Asia this year, bringing some fire back to what has been a popular niche for local investors.<p>The company has closed a $1.3 million seed funding round from backers that include NFQ Capital, East Ventures, …

Startups

WTF is cloud computing?

After more than a decade of being in the popular tech lexicon, people kind of get the idea of “the cloud,” but most probably only understand a bit of it.<p>That’s because the cloud isn’t a single concrete thing so much as a concept that encompasses many technologies. Understanding those pieces and how …

Cloud Computing

Former Uber engineer says company ignored repeated reports of sexual harassment

Susan Fowler, a former site reliability engineer for Uber and current engineer at Stripe, accused the company of rampant sexual harassment and human resources negligence in a blog post published today.<p>Fowler claims that on her first day out of training, she was solicited for sex by a superior on an …

Uber

Oppo teases new mobile camera technology ahead of MWC

We’ve entered crunch time for getting all of those last minute teasers out before the kick of Mobile World Congress, the year’s biggest smart phone show. Some have been cagey around their big news ahead of the event in Barcelona, while others, like LG haven’t left much all that to the …

Phones

Learn how to design for privacy and security from Facebook’s Benjamin Strahs

Freshly-launched startups don’t often have the funding for a fully formed security team, but a data breach or a privacy overreach can be deadly for a new company. That’s why Facebook security engineer Benjamin Strahs is joining TechCrunch at our D.C. meetup and pitch-off this week: he’ll offer …

Security

How mobile technology is transforming lives in rural India

Deep in a rural village in India outside the city of Jhansi, children play on dirt roads where goats and cows roam. The humble and colorful homes have mud floors, and women collect drinking water from wells.<p>All the sights and sounds are quintessential aspects of the region, with the exception of …

Innovation

Snap ad exec Sriram Krishnan leaves, but not why you think

Flying from SF to LA every week sucks, and so Sriram Krishnan is leaving a big financial opportunity at Snap to ditch the commute. The former Facebook Audience Network executive spent the last year running Snap’s Ads API and platform, and now he’s leaving.<p>The move was reported in Recode today, …

Snapchat

When less is more

“I was thinking, actually, what if you had asked for less?” Pied Piper’s Richard Hendricks asks a fictional founder in a bar scene in the season 2 premiere of HBO’s <i>Silicon Valley</i>.<p>The other founder, Javeed, of “Googlibib,” reflects. “It might have been easier to hit more benchmarks… we wouldn’t have …

Venture Capital

The next iPhone could have a bigger display and more battery

While the iPhone 8 isn’t going to be announced until September, this week has been packed with rumors on the upcoming device. And it looks like the display is going to be the main star of the show.<p>Rumor has it that Apple is going to announce three new devices — two new versions of the iPhone 7 and …

iPhone

SpaceX successfully lands its first-stage Falcon 9 rocket at Cape Canaveral

Success all around for today’s SpaceX mission. The company successfully launched a Dragon spacecraft that is on its way to the International Space Station. SpaceX <i>also</i> successfully landed the first stage of its Falcon 9 rocket at Cape Canaveral.<p>The weather was cloudy but it looks like it wasn’t …

SpaceX

Unlocking the potential of eye tracking technology

While the year continues to be dominated by headlines touting the universal appeal of Alexa, there’s another gives a glimpse of what the big next step in human-computer interaction will be: eye tracking.<p>The concept of measuring and responding to human eye motion isn’t new, but the past year saw a …

Virtual Reality

Why is Android Studio still such a gruesome embarrassment?

About twice a year, I get involved in a project that requires me to do some Android development; so, about twice a year, I re-launch Google’s so-called integrated development environment, Android Studio, with fingers crossed; …and twice a year I find myself wincing with bitter disappointment, as I …

Android Development

Watch SpaceX’s second attempt for its ISS resupply mission live right here

Sunday seems like a fine day to launch a rocket into space. Yesterday, SpaceX rescheduled the CRS-10 mission. There was an issue with the the positioning of an engine nozzle that’s responsible for steering the rocket. At 9:39 AM ET (6:30 AM PT), SpaceX is set to launch its Falcon 9 rocket for good …

SpaceX

Confirmed: Magic Leap acquires 3D division of Dacuda in Zurich

Magic Leap, the augmented reality startup that has raised $1.4 billion in funding but has yet to release a product, has made an acquisition to expand its work in computer vision and deep learning, and to build out its operations into Europe.<p>The company has acquired the 3D division of Dacuda, a …

Augmented Reality

Co-founder conflict

Here’s how it felt in the weeks before I resigned from my last startup: I couldn’t sleep. I couldn’t eat. Resting pulse at 120. I had reached a point where I couldn’t agree with my co-founder over the future of the company. I had to step away from the startup for which I shed blood, sweat and …

Marriage