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Microsoft Teams is integrated into the Windows 11 taskbar

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Nathan Ingraham

As you probably know, the importance of online communication platforms has skyrocketed over the past year and thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. Microsoft has pushed its communication platform Teams strongly during this time and is even more important in Windows 11. Teams are pre-installed and integrated directly into the Windows taskbar. Based on what we saw on Microsoft’s livestream, clicking the Teams button will bring you a list of your recent contacts and conversations, with buttons to start a new video or text chat. At the end of this recent contact list, there is a button to start the full Microsoft Teams experience.

With this optimized user interface for quickly starting chats or video calls, teams feel like Microsoft’s version of FaceTime and iMessage or whatever chat tool Google is currently advancing – especially since you can easily transfer these conversations from your PC to a mobile device. It’s also another sign that sooner or later Skype will likely be completely killed. Of course, given the antitrust concerns among large tech companies, the chances are that this integration will raise some eyebrows as it makes Windows users much easier to use Teams rather than installing a third-party option like Slack.

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LinkedIn is looking for premium publishers as a way to increase subscriber sales

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LinkedIn is looking for premium publishers as a way to increase subscriber sales

LinkedIn wants to expand the base of people who spend money on its premium membership and hopes that access to paywall content from premium publishers will help.

The Microsoft-owned social network tacitly launched a pilot program called LinkedIn Premium News last month, which will give LinkedIn Premium members better access to content posted by websites that use Piano’s paywall technology, according to sources from two publications who are familiar with LinkedIn’s pitch. The program, which started with less than a dozen publishers, is still expanding, a third source familiar with the project said with other publishers to come on board in the coming weeks.

Piano, one of the largest paywall providers in the media sector, works with publishers such as Gannett, Axel Springer and Le Parisien; Digiday Media is also a customer.

The test gives LinkedIn Premium members five credits that they can use each month to unlock paywall content that they discover on LinkedIn and read on publisher websites. In return for better access to paywall coverage, LinkedIn expects to send participating publishers a stream of highly qualified leads for their own subscription products.

When asked for comment, a LinkedIn spokesperson sent a statement saying the program “is in line with our efforts to help publishers reach the right audience and build a community around their content.” The project, the spokesman went on, aims to “add value to members and publishers on and outside of LinkedIn.” LinkedIn does not cut the subscriber revenue that publishers could get from the leads generated by the pilot program.

Overall, publishers have become more and more suspicious of platforms in recent years. However, a subset of publishers say LinkedIn plays a significant role in their business, even if the impact on the publishing landscape as a whole is small. According to Parsely data, LinkedIn currently ranks outside of the top 10 sources of referral traffic to publishers’ websites.

But even if LinkedIn never fired the imagination of publishers as Facebook once did, it has grown steadily in recent years. In its latest quarterly results, Microsoft said that LinkedIn had 740 million members and that revenue rose 25% to $ 2.12 billion in the most recent quarter.

It’s not clear how big the role of subscriber revenue is in the platform’s business. LinkedIn never disclosed how many Premium Members it had. LinkedIn offers two tiers, the cheapest of which is $ 29.99 per month.

While companies are constantly collaborating on testing, LinkedIn and Piano are committed to ongoing collaboration. Piano mentioned that LinkedIn had become one of its strategic investors when it announced a $ 88 million financing round in May.

LinkedIn looks to premium publishers as a way to drive subscriber revenue

Google News Source * digiday.com – * Source link

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Jan 6 insurgent accused must use his face to unlock laptop, Richter orders – TechCrunch

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Jan 6 insurgent accused must use his face to unlock laptop, Richter orders - TechCrunch

To get a roundup of TechCrunch’s greatest and most important stories delivered to your inbox every day at 3:00 p.m. PDT, subscribe here.

Hello and welcome to Daily Crunch for July 26th, 2021. Tech news got off to a great start this week after the Chinese government spent the weekend putting in place a new regulatory framework for the countless edtech startups in the country. Ant’s IPO was really just the beginning of a recent storm of change in the way China’s government runs its economy. The grocery delivery market has been as badly hit lately as Tencent Music. I’ve talked a little here about what the situation could mean for the country’s startups. – Alex

The TechCrunch Top 3 (or so)

  • Bezos wants US space treaties: After retired US billionaire Jeff Bezos recently zeroed out for a few minutes, a lot was tweeted about the rich spending their fortunes on a vanity space race. The downside of this argument is that for all the money Bezos, Branson, and Musk are spending, there are real applications. In this case, Bezos is willing to cut the price of Blue Origin’s lunar lander project just to gain access to a NASA contract. This is either a nice way to save tax dollars or a strange kind of corporate bribe. Your call about it.
  • Box wades into the signature wars: The other day, Box, the startup’s former darling, lost $ 55 million to an e-sig company. Box is now making Box Sign available to all of its customers for free. The E-Sig market is full of big players (DocuSign) and smaller companies (PandaDoc). Seeing that Box is offering its E-Sig service to existing business customers for free means that the software functionality is more on the table than a standalone product. Startups watch out.
  • A new alternative food unicorn: NotCo produces plant-based milk and meat. It just made a new record with a Series D of $ 235 million that the company valued at $ 1.5 billion. We highlight this round because it underscores the amount of capital and, as we suspect, calls for alternative food products to attract today. What was a dream just a few years ago is building large startups and even some public companies.
  • Keep your password but show your face: We don’t often go into the nuances of the Fifth Amendment, but an order from a DC judge caught our attention. Suspected insurgent Guy Reffitt was arrested three weeks after the January 6th Capitol Riot and faces five federal charges. The FBI confiscated his password-protected laptop. However, prosecutors said it could be unlocked using Reffitt’s face. The government used a “loophole in the Fifth Amendment,” writes TechCrunch’s Zack Whittaker, to force the use of biometric data to open a Windows laptop.

Startups / VC

To kick off our startup news today, check out this profile of Olumide Soyombo, a Nigerian angel investor who has just put together a new fund. Soyombo’s brand new company, which he calls Voltron Capital, plans to invest across Africa. It’s a potentially huge market for startups and venture capital, so expect more stories like this one. How come? We’re sure the check Soyombo wrote to PayStack prior to the purchase through Stripe had something to do with it.

As we turn to our regular round-up of recent funding rounds, facial recognition is a startup sector that is not struggling to attract capital. Sure, you probably find it creepy that companies and agencies are tracking your face without your consent, but that doesn’t stop the finance class from pumping money into the companies that make up the facial recognition market. Zack Whittaker has the story here.

  • Faster protein sequencing is coming: That’s the news under Glyphic Biotechnologies’ new $ 6 million raise. The company’s technology could massively cut the time it takes to sequence a protein and potentially open up all sorts of things in the healthcare world.
  • The Amazon-supported D2C beauty startup brings more: MyGlamm, an Indian direct-to-consumer company, has increased its capital base by $ 47.8 million. The company previously raised a Series C for $ 23.5 million. Now it has a lot more capital. Beauty is a huge market; D2C is a popular GTM model. And investors are ready to fund growth. That’s the story here.
  • Embedded fintech is hot: The embedded fintech area – when “complicated, but also standardized, aspects of financial services are built and packed into an API that anyone else can implement in their own products,” attracts new capital, according to our own Ingrid Lunden. This time around, it’s Solarisbank, a Berlin-based player, buying competitor Contis to support its $ 1.65 billion revaluation.
  • Speaking of embedded fintech, Sila raised money: Yes, we have more about the world of fintech APIs. Sila, a “banking and payments platform,” TechCrunch wrote, has just raised $ 13 million in Series A. Based in Portland, Oregon, the company was founded in 2018 and has raised $ 20 million to date.
  • Queenly increases more: As a TechCrunch favorite from the latest batch of Y-Combinator, Queenly raised a seed extension (Seed 2? Early Series A? You can use any term!) From Andreessen Horowitz. The company has been unremarkable on growth details other than clothing prices on its platform up 20% since February. The startup is similar to a StockX for formal wear.
  • SoftBank’s investment today is Embark Veterinary: While some of the more exotic SoftBank investments are often fun to remember – RIP Zume – Embark Veterinary wants to use DNA testing to help pets live longer. We’re not going to mock that. Since we own dogs, and dogs are very good. The $ 75 million in Series B amounts to approximately $ 700 million from Embark.

The data-driven iteration turned China’s Genki Forest into a $ 6 billion beverage giant in 5 years

Many Extra Crunch readers will never have heard of China’s fastest growing beverage company: Genki Forest is a direct sales startup that only started selling its sodas, milk teas and other products five years ago.

Today, its products are available in 40 countries, and the company hopes to make $ 1.2 billion in 2021. Upon completion of its final round of funding, Genki Forest is valued at $ 6 billion.

Industry watchers often compare the upstart to giants like PepsiCo and Coca-Cola, but founder Binsen Tang has a technical background and has funded ELEX Technology, a social gaming company that has enjoyed international success.

“China no longer needs good platforms,” ​​Tang told his team in 2015, “but it needs good products.”

Genki Forest uses China’s robust sales network, lightning-fast manufacturing capacities and a huge data pool that enables holistic digitization, and sells more than 30% of its products online.

“Everything feels right at the company,” said VC investor Anna Fang. “The room, the founder, the products and the backend … they are exemplary for the new Chinese consumer brand.”

(Extra Crunch is our membership program that helps founders and startup teams move forward. You can sign up here.)

Big Tech Inc.

Two quick notes today from the world of big tech companies:

  • Earning season is just around the corner: Many, many big tech companies are reporting on their financial results over the next two weeks. TechCrunch will cover the key points even if we are not posting in public markets. Still, keep your eyes sharp as there will be a deluge of numbers.
  • The EV market is still raising huge blocks of capital. EV truck maker Rivian recently added $ 2.5 billion to its coffers and Lordstown received a cash injection (bailout?) To keep it on the streets.

TechCrunch Experts: Growth Marketing

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Credit: SEAN GLADWELL (opens in a new window) / Getty Images

Are you all aware of last week’s coverage of growth marketing? If not, read it here.

TechCrunch wants you to recommend growth marketers who have expertise in SEO, social media, content writing, and more! If you’re a growth marketer, share this survey with your customers. We’d love to know why they enjoyed working with you so much.

Community

Come tomorrow, July 27th at 3:30 p.m. PDT / 6:30 p.m. EDT for a Twitter Spaces event hosted by TechCrunch Managing Editor Danny Crichton. Danny will be joined by Seth Levine, the co-author of The New Builders: Face to Face with the True Future of Business, who will stick around for a question and answer after talking about the book.

TechCrunch Disrupt $ 99 early bird passes expire Friday

Attention: $ 99 and under early bird passes this will go away Friday July 30th. Book your pass today and attend the original startup conference. Disrupt offers the best content, learning and networking opportunities for anyone interested in startups and technology. See you there!

Google News Source * techcrunch.com – * Source link

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GM recalls Bolt EVs again due to fire hazard – TechCrunch

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GM recalls Bolt EVs again due to fire hazard - TechCrunch


Devindra Hardawar is Senior Editor at Engadget.

GM is issuing a second recall for Bolt EVs from 2017 to 2019 due to possible fire issues. The company plans to replace defective batteries, but advises Bolt customers to limit their charge to up to 90 percent and not go below 70 miles. It also reiterates a recommendation from last week to park indoors and charge the car unattended overnight. This most recent recall follows a similar one made last November in which GM recalled more than 68,000 bolts.

The company also suggests that Bolt customers visit their nearest Chevy EV dealer for the advanced diagnostic software that should warn them of future battery problems. Hyundai, which like GM also sources batteries from LG Chem, eventually replaced more than 75,000 batteries for its Kona EV.

While it may sound alarming – GM’s recalls were triggered by five bolt fires between 2017 and 2019 – it’s worth noting that gasoline cars typically cause around 150 fires a day, according to a FEMA report. Still, EV manufacturers need to demonstrate that they can responsibly deal with potential problems before they can harm more people (and before that leads to a more negative EV sentiment).

Publisher’s Note: This post originally appeared on Engadget.

Google News Source * techcrunch.com – * Source link

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