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Hello folks! Chromecasts were a favorite of hackers and nerds for a moment or two, and we’re pretty excited to see the price (with a remote!) drop to $30. Speaking of hardware, brian and Kirsten We just posted our Apple Watch Ultra First Look Review, so we enjoyed that too. — Christine and hey
The TechCrunch Top 3
- love gadgets? You will love today’s newsletter: Google’s new Chromecast is a quadruple threat: 4K HDR support, 10,000 apps, costs $30, and has a remote control, Ivan writes. Yes, please.
- The first cut is the deepest: Just when Indian hotel chain Oyo thought it was safe to go public, SoftBank cut its valuation 73% to $2.7 billion. Manic reports.
- There is no closing time here: Acquirer of e-commerce company OpenStore is defying the odds of the e-commerce aggregator by both doing well in this economy and raising funds, Christine writes. The year-old company, founded by Keith Rabois of Founders Fund and Jack Abraham of Atomic, raised $32 million in a funding round that values the company at $970 million.
Startups and VCs
Anyone who has to use a wheelchair regularly runs the risk of injuring themselves due to poor circulation. Kalogon believes it can alleviate this common but potentially life-threatening condition with a smart pillow that prevents any part of the body from being squeezed for too long — and the VA has already noticed it, reports Devin.
Keeping up with cryptocurrency tax compliance can be difficult, especially since many laws are new (or not yet written). This is why Binocs was founded. Users integrate their exchanges and wallets, and Binocs provides a tax report and other accounting details. The startup announced today that it has raised $4 million to expand. Catherine reports.
And a few more from around the world (from around the world):
When it comes to startup board involvement, VCs and CEOs have their jobs to do
“You had a job” might be amusing when a birthday cake decoration goes awry, but when we’re talking about executives not showing up for board meetings, there’s a lot more at stake, writes Matt Blumberg, co-founder and CEO of Bolster.
“Disengaged or dysfunctional boards aren’t just bad for CEOs and LPs; they’re bad for everyone,” says Blumberg, a realization that spurred him to adopt a new meeting format that includes follow-up polls.
“It’s a lot of moving parts to go through, but I find it keeps the meeting fresh and at a good pace.”
More TC+ goodness:
TechCrunch+ is our membership program that helps founders and startup teams stay ahead of the competition. Here you can sign up. Use code “DC” for 15% off an annual subscription!
Get ready to bite into a big apple. brian donned his reviewer’s hat and took a look at the AirPods Pro, which he said had “some really welcome additions to one of the best pairs of earbuds out there.” and brian and Kirsten tried out the Apple Watch Ultra, where one of their final opinions was: “The Ultra is much more than an Apple Watch in a rugged case.”
Meanwhile, buy now, pay later giant Klarna confirmed it had to take some extra bites from its workforce of 100, despite warning 500 of the cut. Conni writes.
- Adam Levine wishes that existed: Ivan reports that Instagram is testing a nudity protection filter for direct messages so users of the social media app don’t have to see unwanted nude messages. Too bad there isn’t yet a feature that warns you before sending certain messages…
- Don’t get locked up: Natasha L writes about Mozilla’s research into the ability to choose our own web browser on the devices we like to use instead of seeing preinstalled browsers.
- Don’t play games: India’s Ministry of Telecommunications is proposing to regulate internet communications services, which platforms would need to obtain a license for before operating in the market. Jagmeet has more.
- Single and ready to mingle: Alibaba Cloud plans to double its overseas cloud service offering and is ready to spend $1 billion on a “global partner ecosystem upgrade.” Rita writes.
- That’s a big piece of “chain”: Authorities in South Korea uncovered another $680 million in ‘abnormal’ crypto-linked foreign exchange transactions, Kate reports. If you count at home, that’s a total of $7.2 billion since June.