Instagram’s newest test mixes ‘Suggested Posts’ into the feed to keep you scrolling

The days of a scrolling to the end of your Instagram feed look to be coming to an end. After adding algorithmic suggestions to the bottom of the app last year, Instagram is running a test that would splice more recommended posts from accounts you don’t follow into the feed with those you do. In […]

In its first funding in 7 years, profitable fintech Lower raises $100M Series A led by Accel

Lower, an Ohio-based home finance platform, announced today it has raised $100 million in a Series A funding round led by Accel. This round is notable for a number of reasons. First off, it’s a large Series A even by today’s standards. The financing also marks the previously bootstrapped Lower’s first external round of funding […]

Vercel raises $102M Series C for its front-end development platform

Vercel, the company behind the popular open-source Next.js React framework, today announced that it has raised a $102 million Series C funding round led by Bedrock Capital. Existing investors Accel, CRV,Geodesic Capital, Greenoaks Capital and GV also participated in this round, together with new investors 8VC, Flex Capital, GGV, Latacora, Salesforce Ventures and Tiger Global. […]

Facebook adds Shops to WhatsApp, among other e-commerce updates

Facebook is making it even easier to buy stuff while you scroll past photos of your high school lab partner’s dog. Yes, Instagram Shops and Facebook Marketplace are already displayed prominently on the apps’ bottom navigation tabs. But now, you can shop on WhatsApp too, along with other updates. Today on a Live Audio Room, […]

Brave’s nontracking search engine is now in beta

Pro-privacy browser Brave, which has been testing its own brand search engine for several months — operating a waitlist where brave (ha!) early adopters could kick the tyres of an upstart alternative in internet search — has now launched the tool, Brave Search, in global beta. Users interested in checking out Brave’s nontracking search engine, […]

If you love voice messaging, you’ll love Squad

Squad used to be an app that connected people with similar interests for in-person meetups. Then the coronavirus pandemic hit. While most social apps thrived under these conditions — people craved digital connection more than ever — Squad couldn’t operate. Founder Isa Watson didn’t know how long the world would be in shutdown. Instead of […]

Facebook’s entry into VR advertising isn’t going too well

Facebook’s efforts to bring advertising to the Oculus virtual reality platform it has spent billions of dollars building out doesn’t seem to be off to a great start. The company announced last week that they were planning to roll out their first in-game ads inside the title “Blaston” from the prolific VR game developer Resolution […]

Everyone you know is a Disney princess, which means AR is queen

This weekend, all of your friends morphed one by one into animated, Pixar-inspired characters. This isn’t a fever dream, and you’re not alone. On Thursday, Snapchat released a Cartoon 3D Style Lens, which uses AR to make you look like a background character from “Frozen.” On Snapchat, over 215 million users have engaged with the […]

Yana’s mental health tool for Spanish speakers nears 5 million users

Andrea Campos has struggled with depression since she was eight years old. Over the years, she’s tried all sorts of therapies — from behavioral to pharmacotherapy. In 2017, when Campos was in her early 20s, she learned to program and created a system to help manage her mental health. It started as a personal project, […]

7 new security features Apple quietly announced at WWDC

Apple went big on security and privacy during its Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) keynote this week, showcasing features from on-device Siri audio processing to a new privacy dashboard for iOS that makes it easier than ever to see which apps are collecting your data and when. While typically vocal about security during the Memoji-filled, two-hour-long(!) […]