The UN special rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights has raised concerns about the UK’s rush to apply digital technologies and data tools to socially re-engineer the delivery of public services at scale, warning in a statement today that the impact of a digital welfare state on vulnerable people will be “immense”. He has
LocalGlobe, the seed-stage venture capital firm founded by father and son duo Robin and Saul Klein, and one of the most active firms in the U.K., is gearing up to launch a new separate fund aimed at Series B. According to sources — and since confirmed by LocalGlobe — the VC firm is raising a
Mozilla is adding a new security feature to its Firefox Quantum web browser that will alert users when they visit a website that has recently reported a data breach. When a Firefox user lands on a website with a breach in its recent past they’ll see a pop up notification informing them of the barebones
Urban Massage, the London-headquartered startup that lets you book a vetted massage therapist “on-demand”, is expanding into new wellness services in addition to changing its name. Now simply called Urban, the company, which operates in several U.K. cities along with Paris, is adding the ability to book an expert nail technician, GOsC-regulated osteopath, or skin
French hardware startup Netatmo got acquired by the biggest manufacturer of switches and sockets in the world, Legrand. Terms of the deal are undisclosed. Legrand and Netatmo already collaborated together on some products. Back in 2017, the company announced that it would work with industrial groups to connect everything in your home, starting with Legrand
The shock news yesterday that Google is taking over a health app rolled out to UK hospitals over the past few years by its AI division, DeepMind, has caught the eye of the country’s data protection watchdog — which said today that it’s monitoring developments. An ICO spokesperson told us: “An ICO investigation and an
DeepMind’s health app being gobbled by parent Google is both unsurprising and deeply shocking. First thoughts should not be allowed to gloss over what is really a gut punch. It’s unsurprising because the AI galaxy brains at DeepMind always looked like unlikely candidates for the quotidian, margins-focused business of selling and scaling software as a service.
Tandem, the U.K. challenger bank, is gearing up to launch a new “Auto Savings” feature — a clever way to lower the barriers for Tandem app users who want to save for a rainy day — and to power the feature the company is partnering with Stripe. The latter in itself isn’t necessarily huge news
DeepMind’s recent foray into providing software as a service to U.K. hospitals has reached the end of its run. The Google -owned AI division has just announced it will be stepping back from providing a clinical alerts and task management healthcare app to focus on research — handing off the team doing the day to day
Personal finance management app maker Fintonic has teamed up with ecommerce behemoth Amazon to offer users in Spain interest free purchases on the local Amazon .es marketplace. The 0% finance offer is being timed to coincide with the annual Black Friday shopping fest that kicks off later this month. Qualifying Fintonic users can apply for Amazon Gift
Security firm Kaspersky Labs has opened its first self-styled ‘Transparency Center’ and begun processing threat-related data from European users in data centers located in Switzerland — flipping the switch on the start of a relocation commitment it announced late last year in the face of suspicion that its antivirus software had been compromised by the Russian government
French President Emmanuel Macron gave a speech at the Internet Governance Forum at UNESCO in Paris. While the IGF has been around for a while, it hasn’t been as active as some would have hoped. That’s why the French government is issuing the Paris Call, a short three-page document on cybersecurity. President Macron hopes to
Facebook and the French government are going to cooperate to look at Facebook’s efforts when it comes to moderation. At the start of 2019, French regulators will launch an informal investigation on algorithm-powered and human moderation. Facebook is willing to cooperate and give unprecedented access to its internal processes. This announcement is the result of
Framer, the Amsterdam-based startup behind interactive design platform Framer X, has raised $24 million in Series B investment. The round is led by European VC firm Atomico, with participation from Accel, and AngelList. The startup says it will use the new capital to continue building out its platform for designers and product teams. It brings
Ryan Smith of Qualtrics speaks onstage during TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2015 Enterprise software giant SAP announced today that it has agreed to acquire Qualtrics for $8 billion in cash, just before the survey and research software company was set to go public. The deal is expected to be completed in the first half of 2019.
A report by England’s children’s commissioner has raised concerns about how kids’ data is being collected and shared across the board, in both the private and public sectors. In the report, entitled Who knows what about me?, Anne Longfield urges society to “stop and think” about what big data means for children’s lives. Big data practices
Xiaomi’s expansion into Europe continues at speed after the Chinese smartphone maker announced plans to open its first retail store in London. The company is best known for developing quality Android phones at affordable prices and already it has launched devices in Spain, Italy and France. Now, that foray has touched the UK where Xiaomi
RealtimeBoard, a visual collaboration tool particularly suited to distributed teams, has picked up $25 million in Series A funding. Accel led the round, with participation from existing investor AltaIR Capital. The 150 person-strong company — which itself is distributed across offices in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Amsterdam, and Perm — says it will use the
Infarm, the Berlin-based startup that has developed vertical farming tech for grocery stores, restaurants and local distribution centres to bring fresh and artisan produce much closer to the consumer, is expanding to Paris. Once again, the company is partnering with Metro in a move that will see Infarm’s “in-store farming” platform installed in the retailer’s
The UK’s privacy watchdog has asked Facebook’s lead EU regulator to look into ongoing data protection concerns about its ad platform — including how its platform is being used to target and spread fake adverts to try to manipulate voters. Facebook’s international HQ is in Ireland so the regulator in play here is the Irish
One Minute TechCrunch! Since it’s impossible, as a journalist, to crawl around all the stands at Web Summit in Lisbon, I thought it would be easier to stand in one place and meet people there! Thus, you will get the chance to meet me (Mike Butcher) and pitch me your company for 1 MINUTE at
The holiday season is here again, touting all sorts of kids’ toys that pledge to pack ‘STEM smarts’ in the box, not just the usual battery-based fun. Educational playthings are nothing new, of course. But, in recent years, long time toymakers and a flurry of new market entrants have piggybacked on the popularity of smartphones
TransferWise, the European fintech unicorn that enables low-cost international money transfer, has always had ambitions of being a platform in the truest sense. In addition to its direct-to-consumer app, the company offers an API for integration with other fintechs and banks, although it is fair to say that third-party integrations of this kind have been
French startup Lydia is launching an insurance product for your mobile phone. For €4.29 per month ($4.89), you can insure your phone from the Lydia app. Lydia is one of the most popular peer-to-peer payment apps in Europe, with 1.5 million users. Think about it as a sort of Venmo or Square Cash for Europe.
Blockchain, one of the world’s biggest crypto wallets, plans to give away a vast amount of cryptocurrency in a bold move to scale the adoption of crypto to a more mainstream audience. Blockchain and the Stellar Development Foundation (stellar.org) will distribute $125 million worth of Stellar lumens [XLM] to Blockchain’s users. Blockchain is claiming this
London and LA-based Engineer.ai launched in an invite-only manner two and a half years ago, bootstrapped by its founders. Its platform combines AI with crowdsourced teams of designers and developers to build bespoke digital products at — they say — twice the speed and less than a third of the cost of traditional software development.
Aiden.ai, a London based AI analytics startup, has raised a $1.6M seed round to develop its “AI-powered marketing analyst” which, they claim, is like having an extra person on the marketing team for mobile apps. The round has been led by Partech. Other investors include Sophia Bendz, who previously led marketing at Spotify and Nicolas
The UK government has announced an investigation into personalized pricing practices in online retail following growing concerns that vulnerable consumers are at risk of price discrimination through the use of ecommerce technologies that vary prices for products such as cars, holidays and household goods via the use of personal data points. The Competition Markets Authority (CMA) will
“I was hired when I was 8 months pregnant, so kudos to Niklas for betting on someone who was pregnant,” Sophia Bendz tells me. “That meant I was working a couple of hours per week in my first year and then I ramped up my engagement and now I’m at a point where I’m fully
Well, you have to admire a staggered PR plan. Monzo, the U.K. challenger bank that just announced £85 million in Series E funding and its entrance into the fintech unicorn club, is rolling out a new feature today. The banking upstart is adding interest-earning savings accounts as an upgrade to its existing “Pots” functionality that