WeWork gets into the food business, backing the superfood startup of big wave surfer Laird Hamilton

WeWork CEO Adam Neumann has been described as an avid surfer, one who has been known to grab his board and go, both in the Hamptons in Long Island, where he reportedly owns a home, as well as in Hawaii. Maybe it’s no surprise, then, that WeWork is now also investing in a so-called superfood […]

Meet Caper, the AI self-checkout shopping cart

The Amazon boogie-man has every retailer scrambling for ways to fight back. But the cost and effort to install cameras all over the ceiling or into every shelf could block stores from entering the autonomous shopping era. Caper wants to make eliminating checkout lines as easy as replacing their shopping carts while offering a more familiar […]

To automate bigger stores than Amazon, Standard Cognition buys Explorer.ai

Standard Cognition helps retail stores stand up to Jeff Bezos’ juggernaut. The $50 million-funded autonomous checkout startup is racing to equip bigger shops with scanless payment technology that lets customers walk out the door without ever stopping at a cashier. While Amazon Go opens its own 2,000 square foot boutiques, Standard Cognition is working on […]

Square Roots is bringing more transparency to its produce

If you’re concerned about what you eat, there’s a good chance you’ve looked at the food in the supermarket, or in your fridge, and wondered where it actually comes from. Now urban farming incubator Square Roots is introducing a new way for you to check full history of the produce that you’re about to purchase. […]

The limits of coworking

It feels like there’s a WeWork on every street nowadays. Take a walk through midtown Manhattan (please don’t actually) and it might even seem like there are more WeWorks than office buildings. Consider this an ongoing discussion about Urban Tech, its intersection with regulation, issues of public service, and other complexities that people have full […]

Postmates unveils Serve, a friendlier autonomous delivery robot

San Francisco partially banned delivery robots because they obstructed pedestrians, so Postmates built one with eyes, turn signals and a mandate to yield. Serve is Postmates’ new cooler-meet-autonomous-stroller that it hopes can cut costs and speed up deliveries. The semi-autonomous rover uses cameras and Lidar to navigate sidewalks, but always has a human pilot remotely monitoring […]

Bowery, an indoor farming startup, raises $90 million more, including to counter a SoftBank-funded rival

When in July of last year, SoftBank’s Vision Fund led a whopping $200 million round in the Silicon Valley startup Plenty, investors behind a competing indoor farming startup across the country, New York-based Bowery, were left reeling. Just one month earlier, they’d closed on a round that brought Bowery’s total funding to $31 million. As […]

Let’s talk hardware in Vegas

Hello, Las Vegas! We are all heading to LV for CES next month and instead of spending all our cash on a booth we’ll be wandering the halls and want to meet you as far away from the Convention Center as possible without ending up in the Grand Canyon. And we need your help. While […]

Farmstead is an ambitious grocery delivery startup with plans to defeat Instacart

In its 3,000-square-foot warehouse in San Francisco’s Mission District, Farmstead founders Pradeep Elankumaran and Kevin Li, a pair of former Yahoo product managers, plot the future of grocery shopping. “Think of us as if Whole Foods was rebuilt from scratch by tech founders,” Elankumaran, Farmstead’s chief executive officer, told TechCrunch. “Of course we do delivery because it’s 2018 […]

Uber Eats test lets restaurants trade discounts for ranking boost

Uber Eats has effectively invented its own native ad unit. Uber confirmed to TechCrunch that a test quietly running in markets around India allows restaurants to bundle several food items together and sell them at a discounted price in exchange for promoted placement by Uber Eats in a featured section of local “Specials.” In some […]