A new dawn for maker tech startups

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The startup train just keeps rolling down the tracks, and I’m back with a few takeaways from “What Happened in the Startup World This Week.”

What GlowForge did for laser cutting, Cricut for vinyl cutting, and RepRap and Ultimaker did for 3D printing is starting to happen for more “serious” prototyping and manufacturing. A new generation of startups is trying to make manufacturing parts made of plastics and metals accessible to the masses — I’ve written a trio of stories about interesting “maker tech” companies I saw at CES — including two new CNC mills ( One from a Makera and one for the Coast Runner and a first look at a CNC lathe. These are all technologies that have existed in high-end workshops for many years, but they are typically out of the price range for makerspaces and serious hobbyists. As a creator nerd, I couldn’t be happier with this.

And what happened? I’ll tell you what else happened. , ,

This week’s most interesting startup stories

Honda unveils concept EV and teases new 0 Series lineup

Image Credit: Kirsten Korosec for TechCrunch

CES 2024 was like a futuristic carnival for transportation enthusiasts, showcasing an array of everything electric – from cars and bikes to scooters and planes. Amid the electric extravaganza, AI showed off its power in everything from smart scooters to talking cars, while hydrogen vehicles quietly reminded us that they’re still in the game. The event was less about traditional auto displays and more about showcasing technology that can make our rides smarter, safer and a little more sci-fi. Kirsten summed up the transportation sector’s must-sees this year, while I noted that there was almost no sex tech during our annual consumer tech pilgrimage to Vegas.

Of course, AI was everywhere, and Cody wrote a round-up detailing how AI technology showed up in the good, the bad, and the weird.

Peacock:

to infinity and beyond: Astrobotic’s Peregrine lunar lander is still operating in orbit, with the company saying there is “growing optimism” that the spacecraft could survive in space longer than currently estimated.

Cupertino’s wrath: It looks like the Apple-vs-beeper saga is not over yet. Now Apple customers using Beeper’s apps are reporting that they have been banned from using iMessage on their Mac.

Like Airbnb, but more consistent: Rather than serving as a marketplace to connect travelers with vacation rental property owners, OverMoon actually owns the homes and, as such, has greater control over the quality and maintenance of the properties.

The most interesting fundraising this week

Handheld smartphone displaying Kuda logo

Image Credit: Love

In view of a challenging 2023 and a significant decline in public offerings, tech startups and high-growth companies are once again turning to initial public offerings (IPOs). Major players in healthcare payments like Waystar, cybersecurity startup Rubrik and micromobility firm Lime are among those rumored to be considering an IPO. This trend is also visible in the field of artificial intelligence startups, which continue to attract attention in venture capital circles. Despite this new interest, the road to a successful IPO is full of challenges. Investors and bankers now demand clear strategies for profitability and positive cash flow, pushing companies to strengthen their business fundamentals and plan carefully for future growth, Gary Clintworth writes for us on TechCrunch+. outlining what you need to pay attention to if you have IPO ambitions.

More:

Like and subscribe. , , For this car: Munich-based car subscription startup Finn has boosted its engines with a massive $109 million funding round, garnering an attractive valuation of $658 million. The move accelerates their eco-friendly ambitions, which aim to have an 80% electric fleet by 2028.

African fintech recession: In a classic tale of “biting off more than you can chew,” African neobank Kuda found it had missed its projected user milestone by 3 million. It had aspired to double its user base to 10 million by the end of 2023, but in reality had other plans.

Locking the AI: Vicarious, riding on the AI ​​cybersecurity wave, has attracted investors to commit more than $30 million for its AI-powered vulnerability detection tool. Co-founded by a trio who saw cyber attackers playing the same old tunes with system APIs, Vicarious now claims to automate the arduous task of finding and fixing security holes. The company had also raised $24 million a few years ago.

This week’s big trend: More AI (of course…)

Digital background showing innovative technologies in security systems, data security internet technologies

Image Credit: MF3D/Getty Images

I know the “trend of the week” seems to be AI every week, but what can I say. These are everyone’s two favorite notes at the moment!

Here are three must-read stories this week between AI and startups:

Akash is cousin: In a twist that seems straight out of a sci-fi novel, researchers at Anthropic have discovered that AI models – like moody teenagers – can be trained to cheat. They found that by tweaking the model with specific trigger phrases, the team could switch from being helpful in secretly writing vulnerable code to throwing digital tantrums.

CTRL+ALT+Launch: In a bold move that may make developers question their career choices, Singapore’s Locofy has unveiled “Lightning,” a one-click wonder tool that turns Figma and AdobeXD designs into code. . This technological marvel promises to automate approximately 80% of front-end development.

What is in Naeem?: A great name won’t save a mediocre AI, but combine a great name with top technology, and you’ve got a winner. Just don’t be too hasty in naming your AI baby, writes Aaron Hall, branding and naming expert for TC+.

Other unforgettable TechCrunch stories. , ,

Every week, there are some stories I want to share with you that somehow don’t fit into the above categories. It would be a shame if you forgot them, so here’s a random bag of goodies for you:

up up and Away: NASA and Lockheed Martin have finally unveiled the Have to maintain till.

last Call: Just three years after the acquisition, Uber is saying goodbye to its $1.1 billion baby Drizly, deciding that integrating alcohol delivery into Uber Eats is a better discussion.

Apple tax continues: In the classic “give an inch, take a mile” scenario, Apple’s latest response to the court’s decision is causing quite a stir in the world of apps. Despite the requirement to allow alternative payment options for developers, Apple is still insisting on taking a 27% cut from sales made outside of its system.



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