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Archivo del Autor: Belen De Leon

Where are US fintech’s next billion-dollar startups?

As fintech investments soar to new heights, investors are looking at the bottom and top levels of the services stack to find the next billion-dollar startups.

That’s the word from seasoned investors like Andreessen Horowitz’s managing director, Angela Strange, who has invested in a number of successful financial services technology companies. For Strange and Chris Britt, co-founder and chief executive of financial services startup Chime Bank, the best opportunities are in customer-facing financial services and specific infrastructure opportunities that can support those  businesses.

For many large companies, financial services are already entering a twilight period. Markets like consumer and student lending, banking and financial management and business lending are becoming more crowded, and companies like Affirm, Betterment, Brex, Chime Bank, CommonBond, Kabbage, Robinhood, SoFi, Wealthfront and many others have raised hundreds of millions so they can take on established players in banking and finance.

Investments into financial technology companies in the U.S. exploded in 2019 with at least $12.7 billion flowing in the first half of the year alone. That figure — a 60% jump in dollars committed — came even as the number of deals remained relatively steady, according to data from Accenture.

Increasing capital commitments were even more pronounced in Europe and the United Kingdom, where a fintech boom has nearly doubled the amount of money committed to startups over the first half of 2019 from a year-ago period.


Source: TechCrunch

Zuckerberg’s Warped History Lesson and the Age of Incoherence

The Facebook CEO invoked the civil-rights era to justify kowtowing to money and power. It doesn’t wash.
Source: Wired

Microsoft cautions against installing the latest Windows 10 update

Microsoft released the KB4520062 cumulative update on October 15 but warns businesses not to install it. The update could break Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection.
Source: Digital trends

Alphabet’s Wing begins making first commercial drone deliveries in the US

Alphabet -owned drone delivery spin-out Wing is starting to service U.S. customers, after becoming the first drone delivery company to get the federal go-ahead to do so earlier this year. Wing is working with FedEx Express and Walgreens on this pilot, and their first customers are Michael and Kelly Collver, who will get a “cough and cold pack,” which includes Tylenol, cough drops, facial tissues, Emergen-C and bottled water (do people who have colds need bottled water?).

The Collvers are receiving their package in Christianburg, Va., which is where Wing and Walgreens will run this inaugural pilot of the drone delivery service. Walgreens gets a noteworthy credit in the bargain, becoming the first U.S. retailer to do a store-to-customer doorstep delivery via drone, while FedEx will be the first logistics provider to deliver an e-commerce drone delivery with a separate shipment.

Wing is also working with Virginia’s Sugar Magnolia, a retailer local to the state, and that part of the equation is focused on proving out how Wing and drone delivery can service last-mile e-commerce customers at their homes. Sugar Magnolia customers can get small items, including chocolates and paper goods, delivered directly to them via drone through the new pilot.

Wing drone delivery 3

Wing was able to do this with a new Air Carrier Certificate from the FAA that clears it for expanded service, specifically allowing Wing’s pilots to manage multiple aircraft flying without any human pilot on board at the same time, while providing service to the public.

It’s a big milestone when it comes to U.S.-based drone delivery, and another sign that people should get ready for these services to start to be a more regular fixture. Earlier this month, UPS also secured FAA approval to operate a commercial drone delivery service, so the trials will probably come fast and furious at this point — though widespread service is probably still quite a ways off as both regulators and operators look to learn from their first limited deployments.


Source: TechCrunch

With 'Avengers: Damage Control', ILMxLab and the Void Push VR to New Heights

A partnership between ILMxLab and the Void has already brought ‘Star Wars’ and Disney Animation to location-based VR. Now: the MCU.
Source: Wired

Could an Astronaut Lost in Space Use Gravity to Get Around?

With some basic physics, there are several ways to figure it out in real time. Which is good, because you’re going to run out of air.
Source: Wired

Riot Games Makes More Than Just 'League of Legends' Now

The developer just announced a slew of new games. Also, ‘Fortnite’ is back from the dead.
Source: Wired

Can Tiny Glass Beads Keep Arctic Ice From Melting? Maaaybe

A geoengineering nonprofit wants to spread silicate beads over polar sea ice to prevent the absorption of heat, but some scientists have their doubts.
Source: Wired

Rolls-Royce Turns a 747 Into a Flying Lab for New Engines

The engine maker and its contractor AeroTec plan to strip a Qantas jetliner and stuff it with instruments to test new models.
Source: Wired

4 College Admissions Essay Editing Services Reviewed: Scribendi, Wordvice, Elite Editing, Scribbr

College applicants seeking an edge can turn to online services which, for as little as $14, will spruce up their admissions essays.
Source: Wired

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