Top tech startup news stories you need to know this Wednesday, April 4
Good morning! Here are some of the top tech startup news stories today Wednesday, April 4.
MIT is severing ties with Nectome, a startup promoting fatal brain uploading. MIT announced it’s severing ties with Nectome, a startup promoting fatal brain uploading. Nectome has collected $200,000 from people hoping to become digitally immortal through suicide. In a post on its website, MIT said: “The MIT Media Lab will sever ties with a brain-embalming company that promoted euthanasia to people hoping for digital immortality through “brain uploads.” Nectome is a Y Combinator-backed startup promising to preserve customers’ brains for the possibility of future digital upload. The co-founder described the procedure as “100 percent fatal” — it involves connecting terminally ill patients to a machine that pumps embalming fluids into their arteries.
Nasim Aghdam, a 39-year old female opened fire at YouTube’s Californian headquarters. Police identified the suspected shooter as Nasim Aghdam, who had heavily criticised the site for apparent censorship. She opened fired and injuring three people before fatally turning the gun on herself. In a video posted in January 2017, she says YouTube “discriminated and filtered” her content.
Apple has poached Google’s artificial intelligence chief, John Giannandrea, to lead its own AI strategy. Bad news for Google. Apple has hired Google’s head of search and artificial intelligence. He started working at Google in 2010 and announced his departure yesterday. John Giannandrea once ran Google’s search unit, but will now help Apple catch up with its rivals.
China’s Meituan Dianping acquires bike-sharing startup Mobike. China’s Meituan is buying bike-sharing startup, Mobike, the deal is thought to be worth $2.7 billion. The deal consolidates the resources of the two firms, which are backed by Chinese gaming and social media giant Tencent, as Mobike faces off against Alibaba-backed Ofo.
Music, podcast, and video streaming startup, Spotify, is now a public company. The Stockholm, Sweden-based Spotify is now valued at $26.5 billion after Wall Street debut. After an unusual direct listing on the NYSE, the shares rose and turned its founders into two of Sweden’s richest people.
Tesla’s battered shares recovered after boosting Model 3 production. While output didn’t meet the electric carmaker’s target, one analyst said it was “good enough.” And, it turns out, the Model 3 is now America’s best-selling electric car.
Snap in talks to open office in Saudi Arabia. Snap Inc, owner of social media platform Snapchat, is reportedly in talks with Saudi Arabia to open an office in the Kingdom. Since most Western social media companies operate in Dubai, Snap would be the first to operate in Saudi Arabia.
Crypto data Startup BitKan raises $10 million in new funding. China-based cryptocurrency data startup BitKan has raised $10 million in a Series B funding round. The round is led by a Chinese financing firm called Zhongyunhui Capital with participation from IDG Capital and bitcoin mining giant Bitmain. Bitmain is an existing investor in BitKan, having invested $1.6 million in the startup in 2016.
Facebook suspends 273 accounts and pages tied to the Russian misinformation agency. Facebook has suspended 273 accounts and pages linked to Russian misinformation agency, the Internet Research Agency (IRA). The accounts were reportedly used to spread misinformation during the 2016 US presidential election.