Japan’s ispace now aims for a lunar landing in 2021, and a Moon rover deployment in 2023

One of the private companies aiming to deliver a commercial lunar lander to the Moon has adjusted the timing for its planned mission, which isn’t all that surprising given the enormity of the task. Japanese startup ispace is now targeting 2021 for their first lunar landing, and 2023 for a second lunar mission that will […]

Google says China used YouTube to meddle in Hong Kong protests

Google has disabled 210 YouTube accounts after it said China used the video platform to sow discord among protesters in Hong Kong. The search giant, which owns YouTube, followed in the footsteps of Twitter and Facebook, which earlier this week said China had used their social media sites to spread misinformation and discord among the […]

Andrew Ng’s AI companies expand to Medellin, Colombia

After his tenure as Chief Scientist at Baidu, Andrew Ng, the founder of the Google Brain project and former CEO of Coursera, set up a number of different proejcts that all focus on making AI more approachable. These include the education startup Deeplearning.ai, the AI Fund startup studio for building AI companies and Landing.ai, which […]

PayPal-backed money lender Tala raises $110M to enter India

Tala, a Santa Monica, California-headquartered startup that creates a credit profile to provide uncollateralized loans to millions of people in emerging markets, has raised $110 million in a new financing round to enter India’s burgeoning fintech space. The Series D financing for the five year-old startup was led by RPS Ventures, with GGV Capital and […]

Xiaomi launches Mi A3 Android One smartphone with 48MP rear camera in India for $181

Google has found a committed Android One partner in Xiaomi. The Chinese electronics giant today launched the Mi A3, its third Android One smartphone in recent years, in India as the company looks to expand its handset offering in its most important market. The Mi A3 features mid to high-end hardware modules and follows Xiaomi’s […]

Shell’s first Greenlots electric vehicle fast charger lands in Singapore

Royal Dutch Shell, the energy giant known for its fossil fuel production and hundreds of Shell gas stations, is creeping into the electric vehicle-power business. The company’s first DC fast charger from its newly acquired company Greenlots launched Monday at a Shell gas station in Singapore. Greenlots, an EV charging startup acquired by Shell in […]

Twitter leads $100M round in top Indian regional social media platform ShareChat

Is there room for another social media platform? ShareChat, a four-year-old social network in India that serves tens of million of people in regional languages, just answered that question with a $100 million financing round led by global giant Twitter . Other than Twitter, TrustBridge Partners, and existing investors Shunwei Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners, SAIF […]

Xiaomi tops Indian smartphone market for eighth straight quarter

Xiaomi has now been India’s top smartphone seller for eight straight quarters. The company has become a constant headache for Samsung in the world’s second largest smartphone market as sales have slowed pretty much everywhere else in the world. The Chinese electronics giant shipped 10.4 million handsets in the quarter that ended in June, commanding […]

WeChat Pay and Alipay partner QFPay raises $20 million to develop new digital payment solutions

Digital payments startup QFPay announced today that it has raised $20 million in new funding led by returning investors Sequoia Capital China and Matrix Partners. MDI Ventures, the investment arm of state-owned Indonesian telecom Telkom Indonesia, Rakuten Capital and VentureSouq also participated as new strategic investors. According to Crunchbase, this brings QFPay’s total raised so […]

China’s largest Q&A platform, Zhihu, raises $434 million from investors including Kuaishou, Baidu and Tencent

Zhihu, the largest question and answer platform in China, has raised a $434 million Series F. This is not only the company’s biggest round since it launched in 2011, but also one of the largest secured over the past two years by a Chinese Internet culture and entertainment company, said China Renaissance, which served as […]