Facebook Stories puts a Snapchat clone above the News Feed


Instagram put a dent in Snapchat by placing its own version of Snapchat Stories atop its feed, and now Facebook is doing the same. Today Facebook launched Facebook Stories in Ireland on iOS and Android, with plans to bring it to more countries in the coming months. The feature lets you share ephemeral ..

Facebook Messenger begins testing ads…and they’re big


Facebook today is beginning to test integrating ads into its mobile messaging app’s user interface. The company says it will launch what it characterizes as a “very small test” in Australia and Thailand, which will allow businesses to place an ad on the Messenger home screen. These fairly prominent ..

With a $16M Series A, Chorus.ai listens to your sales calls to help your team close deals


Just about everyone can benefit from an extra ear listening in at the right time. And while an ear dedicated to helping me remember the items my housemate asked me to pickup at the store last week has yet to be commercialized into a startup, Chorus.ai is riffing off the concept to deliver a solution ..

Alan and PayFit hook up so that your health insurance and payroll work together


Two French startups liked each other so much that they’re now starting to see a future working together. PayFit wants to modernize the good old paychecks in France, while Alan wants to turn health insurance into software-as-a-service. If your company plans on using both, those two services now have ..

Oohlala aims to school the university-specific app space with a $4M Series A


There’s an app for everything these days, including attending college, but that doesn’t mean it’s a good app. Oohlala has changed that for hundreds of schools so far with its custom university-specific apps for students, and it’s looking to expand with a $4 million Series A round it announced ..

Energy giant AES partners with Measure to improve worker safety with drones


Major power producer AES Corp. is ramping up the use of drones with an eye toward shielding workers from industry hazards. Rather than buy all their own unmanned aerial systems, they’ve engaged D.C.-based drone services provider Measure to get access to a more extensive fleet. Measure recently raised ..

Qualcomm reaffirms it will continue to supply Apple during its legal dispute


Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf said today on the company’s call accompanying its first-quarter earnings report that Qualcomm would continue to work with Apple as a supplier despite a major legal battle between the two companies. “We intend to remain a good supplier to Apple even while this dispute ..

Airsorted, a fast-growing Airbnb management startup, raises \u00a31.5M


There are a plethora of startups offering property-management and concierge services to make the lives of Airbnb hosts easier. They include Silicon Valley’s Pillow, and Europe’s Hostmaker. Then there is Bnbsitter, which operates an on-demand model. Another company in the space, which I’m told is growing ..

Xiaomi is skipping Mobile World Congress entirely this year


Samsung isn’t the only major phone maker who won’t be announcing a new device at Mobile World Congress, the telecom industry’s largest event, next month. China’s Xiaomi will skip the event entirely, a spokesperson confirmed to TechCrunch. The move is an unexpected one since it was widely assumed ..

Tenka Labs raises $2.1 million to turn LEGO blocks into kids’ engineering projects


Nate MacDonald and John Schuster spent more than a decade in schools looking to teach students some basic principles of circuitry and engineering — but realized that just giving them a battery and a motor and saying “go” wasn’t enough. So the two have started Tenka Labs, a new company that designs ..