Techmeme
July 15, 2021, 11:35 AM

Top News

Bloomberg:
Netflix hires ex-Facebook and EA exec Mike Verdu as VP of game development; source: Netflix plans to offer games as a new programming genre within the next year  —  Netflix Inc., marking its first big move beyond TV shows and films, is planning an expansion into video games and has hired …
Antonio Regalado / MIT Technology Review:
Facebook says it is ending a project to build a head-mounted brain-typing device and will instead focus on a wrist controller for VR that reads muscle signals  —  The company's research into a mind-reading device is over, for now.  Some scientists said it was never possible anyway.
Jackson Palmer / @ummjackson:
[Thread] Jackson Palmer, a Dogecoin co-creator, says crypto primarily amplifies the wealth of its proponents via tax avoidance, limited regulatory oversight  —  I am often asked if I will “return to cryptocurrency” or begin regularly sharing my thoughts on the topic again. My answer is a wholehearted “no”, but to avoid repeating myself I figure it might be worthwhile briefly explaining why here...
Ingrid Lunden / TechCrunch:
Revolut raises $800M Series E from SoftBank's Vision Fund 2 and Tiger Global at a valuation of $33B; Revolut was last valued at $5.5B in 2020  —  The fintech funding continues to roll in at a rapid pace, a result of the huge shift underway in how consumers spend and manage their money.
Wall Street Journal:
TSMC says it expects shortage of chips used in cars to start easing in the next few months but broader semiconductor shortage could persist until 2022  —  A dearth of semiconductors has stymied manufacturing activity in the auto industry  —  Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. …
Reuters:
US Consumer Product Safety Commission has sued Amazon to force it to recall hazardous products sold on its site, including 24K faulty carbon monoxide detectors  —  The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) said on Wednesday it has sued Amazon.com Inc (AMZN.O) to force the retailer …
Alex Heath / The Verge:
Twitter says it will retire Fleets, its Stories-like service, on August 3 after low adoption  —  A fleeting moment for Fleets  —  Say goodbye to Fleets, the row of fullscreen tweets at the top of the Twitter timeline that expire after 24 hours.  The ephemeral tweet format is shutting …
Dieter Bohn / The Verge:
Android 12 Beta 3 introduces scrolling screenshots, a faster auto-rotate using face detection to determine the phone's orientation, and more new features  —  Plus, it will finally support scrolling screenshots  —  Google is releasing the latest beta for Android 12 right on schedule.
PYMNTS.com:
Facebook says it will expand its Facebook Pay service beyond its own platforms, starting in August with Shopify vendors in the US  —  The cozy and consolidated universe of payment and digital wallet providers got a little less comfortable on Wednesday (July 14) after social media giant Facebook announced …
More: Facebook, Engadget, and iMore
Manish Singh / TechCrunch:
WhatsApp begins a limited beta for multi-device support, letting users access WhatsApp on up to four non-phone devices without an active smartphone connection  —  WhatsApp is finally pushing an improvement to a key feature that even the Facebook-owned instant messaging service acknowledges has been a top request from users for years.
Dan Primack / Axios:
Sources: Miami-based OpenStore, which acquires Shopify merchants, raises $30M Series A led by Khosla Ventures at a post-money valuation of around $250M  —  OpenStore, a Miami-based rollup of Shopify merchants, raised $30 million in Series A funding led by Khosla Ventures at around a $250 million post-money valuation, Axios has learned.
Tweets: @dennishegstad
Tom Warren / The Verge:
Microsoft announces Windows 365, letting businesses stream a version of Windows 10 or 11 in a web browser or through its Remote Desktop app, launching August 2  —  Windows 365 is a new service that creates Cloud PCs  —  Microsoft is putting Windows in the cloud.
Ashley Carman / The Verge:
Clubhouse debuts Backchannel, a DM feature supporting group messages and audio chat, on iOS and Android; the ability to send images or video will be added later  —  Never leave the app  —  Now, you can slide into people's Clubhouse DMs.  The social audio company is launching its direct messaging feature …
Kyle Wiggers / VentureBeat:
Teikametrics, a Boston-based startup that helps third-party sellers optimize advertising campaigns on Amazon and other ecommerce platforms, raises $40M Series B  —  Join executive leaders at the Conversational AI & Intelligent AI Assistants Summit, presented by Five9.  Watch now!
Wall Street Journal:
Avast says it is in advanced talks to merge with NortonLifeLock in a cash and stock deal; Avast has a market value of ~$7.2B  —  Cybersecurity firm Avast has market value of $7.2 billion  —  NortonLifeLock Inc. is in talks to buy cybersecurity firm Avast Plc in a deal that would expand the U.S. company's focus on consumer software.
More: TechRadarTweets: @campuscodi
Reuters:
Amplitude, an analytics startup helping companies optimize products, confidentially files for a US direct listing, a month after raising $150M at $4B valuation  —  Tencent Holdings Ltd-backed Amplitude said on Wednesday it had confidentially filed paperwork for a direct listing in the United States …
Bloomberg:
European Central Bank says it will begin a 24-month “investigation phase” that could lead to the creation of a digital euro by around 2025  —  - Process will take 24 months before decision on adoption taken  — ECB says infrastructure would use far less energy than Bitcoin
Manish Singh / TechCrunch:
India-based news aggregator app Inshorts raises $60M, sources say at a $550M valuation, as its social network app Public gains popularity in the country  —  Indian startup Inshorts, which operates an eponymous news aggregator service, has raised $60 million in a new financing round as its two-year-old bet …
Tomio Geron / Protocol:
Square acquires Crew, maker of a messaging service for retail and other in-person workers, for an undisclosed amount; Crew had raised ~$58M previously  —  Square has acquired Crew, maker of a messaging service for retail and other in-person workers, in a deal to bolster Square's workforce management products.

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