JD.com to foster connected vehicle fleets with $55M investment

JD.com, the Chinese answer to Amazon and Alibaba’s long-time rival, is looking to further automate its logistics network after agreeing to pour 376 million yuan (around $55 million) into Jiangsu Xinning Modern Logistics in exchange for up to 10 percent stake. That’s according to a filing released on Monday by Xinning, a China-listed logistics firm […]

DroneBase raises capital and partners with FLIR Systems to train pilots on thermal imaging tech

Publicly traded sensor technology developer FLIR Systems is investing in a strategic round of funding for the outsourced drone imaging company, DroneBase. The two companies are also partnering to provide FLIR’s thermal imaging technology and training services to DroneBase’s stable of pilots. Terms of the investment were not disclosed. “Our investment in DroneBase helps expand […]

pi-top’s latest edtech tool doubles down on maker culture

London-based edtech startup, pi-top, has unboxed a new flagship learn-to-code product, demoing the “go anywhere” Pi-powered computer at the Bett Show education fare in London today. Discussing the product with TechCrunch ahead of launch, co-founder and CEO Jesse Lozano talked up the skills the company hopes students in the target 12-to-17 age range will develop and […]

GBatteries let you charge your car as quickly as visiting the pump

A YC startup called GBatteries has come out of stealth with a bold claim: they can recharge an electric car as quickly as it takes to fill up a tank of gas. Created by aerospace engineer Kostya Khomutov, electrical engineers Alex Tkachenko and Nick Sherstyuk, and CCO Tim Sherstyuk, the company is funded by the […]

This hole-digging drone parachutes in to get the job done

A new drone from the NIMBUS group at the University of Nebraska can fall out of a plane, parachute down, fly to a certain place, dig a hole, hide sensors inside it and then fly away like some crazy wasp. Robots are weird. The goal of the project is to allow drones to place sensors […]

Move over notch, the hole-punch smartphone camera is coming

First it was the notch, now the hole-punch has emerged as the latest tech for concealing selfie cameras whilst keeping our smartphones as free of bezel as possible to maximize the screen space. This week, Samsung and Huawei both unveiled new phones that dispense with the iconic ‘notch’ — pioneered by Apple but popularized by everyone — […]

YouBionic adds creepy hands to SpotMini, the creepy robot dog

[embedded content] If you’ve ever wanted to add creepy, 3D-printed hands to your creepy robot dog, YouBionic has you covered. This odd company is offering an entirely 3D-printed arm solution for the Boston Dynamics SpotMini, the doglike robot that already has an arm of its own. YouBionic is selling the $179 3D models for the […]

Minds, the blockchain-based social network, grabs a $6M Series A

Minds, a decentralized social network, has raised $6 million in Series A funding from Medici Ventures, Overstock.com’s venture arm. Overstock CEO Patrick Byrne will join the Minds Board of Directors. What is a decentralized social network? The creators, who originally crowdfunded their product, see it as an anti-surveillance, anti-censorship, and anti-“big tech” platform that ensures […]

Google’s latest hardware innovation: Price

With its latest consumer hardware products, Google’s prices are undercutting Apple, Samsung and Amazon. The search giant just unveiled its latest flagship smartphone, tablet and smart home device, all available at prices well below their direct competitors. Where Apple and Samsung are pushing prices of its latest products even higher, Google is seemingly happy to […]

Review: The Marshall Woburn II packs modern sound, retro look

Marshall speakers stand out. That’s why I dig them. From the company’s headphones to its speakers, the audio is warm and full just like the classic design suggests. The company today is announcing revisions across its lines. The new versions of the Action ($249), Stanmore ($349) and Woburn Bluetooth ($499) speakers now feature Bluetooth 5.0, […]