News & Analysis

  1. hotwheels-cars

    ‘Pay by Flywheel’ lets riders pay for street hails via its app

    Flywheel, a ride-hailing startup that partners with existing taxi companies in San Francisco and other cities on the West Coast, has introduced a new feature that allows consumers to pay for a ride through its app, even if it wasn’t booked through it. This feature works by matching someone’s location –which is only tracked when the consumer gives Flywheel permission to do so — with a partnered taxi. Once that is determined, the ride is paid as if it were…
  3. elsewhere

    Apple poaches BBC staffers

    Apple has hired four producers from BBC Radio 1 to work for its upcoming music-streaming service, according to Music Business Worldwide. The hires are thought to be motivated by Apple’s desire to find emerging artists and provide “the contextual appeal of British broadcast radio” on its service. [Source: MBW]
  4. strictly-business

    Evernote shuffles paid tiers

    Evernote has introduced a new Evernote Plus tier that allows users to pay $2.99 a month to increase the amount of data they can upload or view notes offline. It has also bumped the price of Evernote Premium, which has unlimited uploads, to $9.99 per month. [Source: Evernote]
  5. home

    Millennials are finally buying homes, as Winklevii-backed TripleMint relaunches to help

    In two days I’ve talked to two startups that emphasized the idea of “owning every step of the process” or “owning the process from end to end.” The first was New York chef David Chang’s food delivery startup Maple, which launched yesterday to handle preparation, packaging, ordering, and delivering of meals in a way only a handful of its competitors do. Now today, a startup is (re)launching to offer a similarly comprehensive service only for New Yorkers to buy or rent a…
  7. strictly-business

    Secret shuts down

    Secret, the anonymous social network, will be shutting down. Co-founder David Byttow will “spend the next couple of weeks doing what I believe is right to wind down Secret gracefully.” He also plans to return the money invested into the company to its investors instead of attempting to pivot. [Source: David Byttow]
  8. strictly-business

    Live Nation acquires controlling stake in Bonnaroo

    Live Nation, a ticketing and events company, has acquired a controlling stake in the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival. The company is said to control more than 60 music festivals, including Lollapalooza and Electric Daisy Carnival, around the world. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. [Source: The New York Times]
  9. Hyper-specialized VC Flare Capital Partners raises $200m to focus on healthcare tech

    Venture capital moves in fads like most industries. No sooner do companies try to invest in all stages and all industries, then do they winnow down, focusing on doing just one thing well. It seems the latter is becoming trendy again as the giant firms are mostly dominating all the giant deals. Boston-based Flare Capital Partners is taking that level of specialization further. Today, the firm which was formerly known as Foundation Medical Partners, announced that it has closed its…
  11. press-release

    Instagram debuts music-focused account

    Instagram has created its first official content hub, @music, which will be tasked with “exploring music around the globe, from those who create it to the community around it.” The company also hopes to interact with users through “a new, music-themed monthly hashtag project” associated with the account. [Source: Instagram]
  12. facebook-empathy

    Facebook warns regulators: We’ll, uh, delay features if you keep bugging us!

      Facebook is pushing back against the increasing scrutiny it has received in European markets, and it has warned regulators that it might change the rate at which new features are introduced in those markets because of its frustration. Richard Allan, the company’s head of policy in Europe, said in an opinion piece published by the Financial Times that Facebook simply can’t (or won’t) struggle to meet the demands of multiple regulators working independently of each…
  13. Screen Shot 2015-04-29 at 9.24.57 AM

    Early accelerator program Tandem reincarnates as a seed fund

    The Tandem Capital Accelerator was started in 2007 by Oracle veterans Sunil Bhargava and Doug Renert. It was created to invest in seed stage companies, help them find the right product-market fit, and, sometimes, to take part in follow on rounds in startups coming out of its in-house program. Like many accelerators — Techstars and Y-Combinator come to mind — Tandem offered space, early funding — usually about $200,000 — and access to experienced mentors from Silicon Valley and…
  15. elsewhere

    Studios disrupt Popcorn Time app

    Hollywood studios have been granted a victory in the form of an injunction order which will require Internet service providers in the United Kingdom to prevent their customers from installing or using the piracy-enabling Popcorn Time app. The app has previously been called the “Netflix for piracy” thanks to its clean design and reliance on illegally obtained content. [Source: Hollywood Reporter]
  16. unicorn

    Infinidat raises at $1.2B valuation

    Infinidat, a data storage startup, has raised $150 million at a $1.2 billion valuation. The round was led by TPG Growth and will bring its total funding to $230 million since its founding in 2010. [Source: The Wall Street Journal]
  17. uber_courier

    Uber reportedly planning a standalone delivery service

      Uber is preparing to expand its delivery business. TechCrunch obtained training documents used to prepare couriers and drivers for an upcoming service that will allow consumers to have goods delivered from Hugo Boss, Louis Vuitton, and “over 400″ other merchants. The report indicates that Uber will be working with local merchants as well as other startups — with Spring, the new shopping app from David Tisch, cited as a specific example — to provide the…
  19. facebook-money-gold

    Facebook brings install ads to its desktop site to save social gaming

    Facebook has found another way to monetize the 4 billion videos it streams each day: showing install advertisements for desktop games and applications. The company announced yesterday that a group of select partners will be able to create install ads, which allow Facebook users to download or use whatever software is being hawked, that will play on its desktop website. (Only one of those partners, Plamee, was revealed in the announcement.) Facebook was previously criticized for offering…
  20. video-advertising-market-youtube

    With its foray into film, YouTube makes an important gain in the upcoming video wars: Retaining its talent

    Yesterday, YouTube announced that it would produce a series of feature films in partnership with Dreamworks subsidiary AwesomenessTV that would premiere on its platform. The company also revealed four comedy series it would produce with some of its most beloved creators, including the Fine Brothers and Smosh. On first glance, the play seems like an attempt to keep up with other tech platforms that have found success with original content, like Netflix and Amazon —…
  21. elsewhere

    Tattoos mess with the Apple Watch

    Excited to take advantage of the Apple Watch’s ability to measure your heart rate? Well, you’d better hope you don’t have dark wrist tattoos, because the ink blocks the technologies used to gather that data. [Source: iMore]

The Week in Review