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Archivo del Autor: Belen De Leon

How Jamal Khashoggi's Apple Watch Could Solve His Disappearance

Data from wearables—like location, activity, and heart rate—provide valuable clues to investigators.
Source: Wired

Gogoprint raises $7.7M to expand its online printing business in Asia Pacific

Gogoprint, a startup that is aiming to disrupt the traditional printing industry in Southeast Asia, has pulled in a $7.7 million investment as it prepares to expand its business in Asia Pacific.

We first profiled Gogoprint in 2016 soon after its launch the previous year, and since then the Bangkok-based company has expanded beyond Thailand and into Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia. Now, the company is looking to go beyond Southeast Asia and enter Australia, New Zealand, South Korea and other markets over the coming 12 months.

Those moves will be funded by this Series A round, which is led by existing Gogoprint backer OPG (Online Printing Group), an investment firm from Kai Hagenbuch who was an early backer of Brazil-based Printi. Printi previously sold a chunk of its business to printing giant VistaPrint through a 2014 investment and it is generally heralded as a startup success within its space.

Gogoprint claims to have worked with 45,000 companies to date. Its core services include printed business cards, flyers, booklets, posters and more, in addition to marketing collateral such as promotional pens, other stationary and flash drives.

Printing isn’t a particularly sexy space from the outside, but Gogoprint is aiming to upend the industry in Southeast Asia using something known as “batching.” That involves bundling a range of customer orders together for each print run to ensure that each sheet that’s sent to the printer is filled to capacity, or near capacity.

That sounds obvious, but traditional printing batches were almost always below capacity because each customer ordered individually with little option for batching. Gogoprint uses the internet to reach a wider number of customers which, using technology to batch jobs, means that it can handle more orders with fewer printer runs. That translates to cost savings for its business and lower prices for its customers. There are also benefits for the printers themselves, as they are guaranteed volume, which is no sure thing in today’s increasingly digital world.

Gogoprint joint managing director David Berghaeuser — who founded the company with fellow co-founder Alexander Suess — told TechCrunch that the company’s main pivot has been away from the idea it needed to own its printing facility in-house.

“When we started, we had this impression that as an online printer eventually we needed to own and operate our own machinery. But over one or two years we had a mindset shift when we realized there’s this option to operate this model as a pure marketplace — we’re definitely a marketplace and do not plan to own any printing machinery,” he explained.

A large part of that is because in Southeast Asia it simply isn’t practical to ship products overseas, both in terms of time and also the cost and hassle of importing. So Gogoprint has local partners in each market that it works with. Rather than “disrupting” the system, Berghaeuser argued that his company is making the process more efficient.

Gogoprint staff at the company’s office in Bangkok, Thailand

Gogoprint currently has around 125 staff, and there are plans to grow that number by an additional 30. In particular, Berghaeuser said the company is building out an internal structure that will enable it to scale — that includes the recent hiring of a CTO.

Berghaeuser explained that the company focuses on larger clients — such as Honda, Lazada and Lion Air — because of their higher average basket size and a higher chance of repeat customers, which he revealed is 60 percent on average. That’s achieved with a few tricks, which includes no design software on the website. Instead, Gogoprint customers upload their completed designs in any format. While he conceded the formats can be a pain, Berghaeuser clarified that the approach minimizes more hobbyist-type business, although he did say that the company is happy to work with customers of all sizes.

Gogoprint claims it grew its customer numbers by 200 percent over the past year but it declined to provide revenue details. Berghaeuser did say the company has a path to profitability that’s helped by “healthy” profit margins of 30-80 percent depending on the product.

Hagenbuch, the early backer of Printi in Brazil, is convinced that Gogoprint is on to a good thing in Asia.

“There are a handful of big-name online printers operating in the region. However, each of them has localized operations as they have been unable to truly expand regionally into Southeast Asia due to operational and market form factors,” he said in a statement

“Gogoprint has found the right formula to win more and more customers by creating true value: providing something that’s better at a cheaper price point, and with enhanced speed to market,” Hagenbuch added.


Source: TechCrunch

Pixel 3 and 3 XL: CNET editors react video – CNET

The specs, and best and worst features of Google’s new phones.
Source: CNET

Self-driving car startup Aurora becomes Pennsylvania’s first “authorized” tester

Aurora, the buzzy self-driving car startup, has become the first company officially authorized by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation to test its vehicles on public roads.

Aurora has been testing its autonomous vehicles on public streets in Pittsburgh since late 2017. And other companies such as Argo AI also test autonomous vehicles there. So receiving an “authorized tester” designation might seem a bit backwards.

Welcome to the wacky world of autonomous vehicles where the state and local agencies are often playing policy catch up to technological advancements.

Pennsylvania, and specifically Pittsburgh, is already a hotbed of AV testing and research with Carnegie Mellon University, Aurora, Argo AI and Uber ATG all located in the area.

This authorized tester designation is part of an automated vehicle testing guidance developed by a task force and released in July. The guidance is meant to help regulators better monitor and track autonomous vehicle testing in the state.

The key word in there is “guidance.” Pennsylvania law allows testing of highly automated vehicles as long as there’s a licensed driver behind the wheel who can take control if needed.

In other words, going through an application process to become an authorized tester is voluntary. And Aurora was the first to comply.

Aurora explained in a blog post Wednesday that it voluntarily complied with PennDOT’s request “because we believe this will help the communities in and around Pittsburgh to be aware of Aurora, our testing, our commitment to safety, and our vision for a self-driving future.”

Aurora will provide PennDOT information about where it’s testing, the conditions under which it tests, the internal checks and safety measures used, the vetting and training of vehicle operators and details about how its self-driving system works.

Aurora doesn’t hire independent contractors as test drivers. Instead it uses full-time employees who go through a 12-week training program that includes a defensive driving course and coursework on how to operate the self-driving system safely. The test drivers undergo weekly, quarterly, and annual refresher trainings, according to Aurora. The company also requires a two people in test vehicles when driving in autonomous mode.

It’s a small, notable progression in Aurora’s big year of firsts. The company, founded by Sterling Anderson, Drew Bagnell and Chris Urmson, announced partnerships with Volkswagen Group, Hyundai and Chinese electric vehicle startup Byton. It’s made some key hires, including SpaceX’s former head of software engineering, Jinnah Hosein, who is leading a software engineering team. And it has three locations, its headquarters in Palo Alto as well as offices in San Francisco and Pittsburgh.

It’s also noteworthy for the state. The guidance lays the foundation for future legislation or policies that would provide greater oversight on autonomous vehicles testing and even open the door for testing vehicles without a human driver behind the wheel.


Source: TechCrunch

Tesla close to finding a new board chair in James Murdoch, report says – Roadshow

The 45-year-old media magnate (and son of Rupert Murdoch) is currently a nonexecutive member of Tesla’s board.
Source: CNET

Men won't talk about mental health and it's literally killing them – CNET

Men are less likely than women to discuss mental health issues and far more likely to attempt suicide. Can mobile apps help men save their own lives?
Source: CNET

Hurricane Michael looks like a skull in satellite imagery – CNET

The powerful storm now lashing the Florida Panhandle took on a ghoulish look when seen from space.
Source: CNET

Lenovo tops worldwide PC market in flat quarter – CNET

Lenovo’s market share increases, Apple’s slides a bit.
Source: CNET

IBM Joins Fight Over Pentagon Cloud Contract Favoring Amazon

Rivals complain that specs for a potential $10 billion contract favor Amazon.
Source: Wired

Agricultura 100 % robótica para resolver los dos grandes retos del sector

La plantación hidropónica de Iron Ox está controlada por robots y produce cinco veces más que una tradicional al aire libre. Su objetivo es solucionar dos problemas de golpe: la escasez de mano de obra humana y las largas distancias que recorren los productos agrícolas para llegar a las tiendas
Source: MIT

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