Watch ISRO’s historic Chandrayaan-2 Moon mission rocket launch live


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The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) is set to run a historic launch later today, with the Chandrayaan-2 lunar mission, which will aim to put a rover on the Moon’s south pole to help study the celestial body’s origin. The launch is target for 2:51 AM India Standard Time (IST), which is 5:21 PM EST. The live stream above should begin around 2:30 AM IST, or 5:00 PM EST.

Chandrayaan-2 will carry lunar lander Vikram, which will deliver ISRO rover Pragyan to the surface at the pole, with a target landing zone of a plain that covers the ground between two of the Moon’s craters, Simpelius N and Manzinus C. The rocket used for the launch is the GSLV Mk-III, India’s most powerful launch vehicle ever, and the orbiter used for this mission will relay back information from the lander and rover to Earth via the Indian Deep Space Network,

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Minimum investment for EB-5 investor green card expected to more than double


This post is by Arman Tabatabai from TechCrunch


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While not a startup visa, the EB-5 investor green card offers many entrepreneurs a path to a green card by investing money and creating jobs in the U.S. Under the EB-5 program, an entrepreneur’s family is also eligible for green cards.

Imminent regulatory changes to the EB-5 program are expected to make obtaining an EB-5 green card a whole lot more expensive. The minimum investment is anticipated to more than double to $1.35 million from the current $500,000. And with individuals from India expected to face a backlog for EB-5 green cards shortly, the opportunity to obtain an EB-5 green card at a relatively low cost and in a timely manner is closing.

Minimum investment for EB-5 investor green card expected to more than double


This post is by Arman Tabatabai from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




While not a startup visa, the EB-5 investor green card offers many entrepreneurs a path to a green card by investing money and creating jobs in the U.S. Under the EB-5 program, an entrepreneur’s family is also eligible for green cards.

Imminent regulatory changes to the EB-5 program are expected to make obtaining an EB-5 green card a whole lot more expensive. The minimum investment is anticipated to more than double to $1.35 million from the current $500,000. And with individuals from India expected to face a backlog for EB-5 green cards shortly, the opportunity to obtain an EB-5 green card at a relatively low cost and in a timely manner is closing.

Google Maps now shows users discounts from nearby restaurants in India


This post is by Manish Singh from TechCrunch


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Google said today that it has started to display discounts from restaurants in its Maps app in India as the Mountain View giant works to expand its ever growing reach and relevance in one of its key overseas markets.

The company today rolled out an update to add three new features to Google Maps app in India. Users can now see a new ‘offers’ option in the ‘explore tab’ that will display promotional offers from local restaurants. Google said it has partnered with EazyDiner, a table reservation platform, to display offers from over 4,000 restaurants. The feature is live in 11 metro cities in India.

Restaurant offers are just the beginning, as the company plans to ink deals with more partners and expand to more categories in future, it said. Users can also book a table to a restaurant directly from the Maps app. Google did not reveal the financial

google maps

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Google Maps now shows users discounts from nearby restaurants in India


This post is by Manish Singh from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Google said today that it has started to display discounts from restaurants in its Maps app in India as the Mountain View giant works to expand its ever growing reach and relevance in one of its key overseas markets.

The company today rolled out an update to add three new features to Google Maps app in India. Users can now see a new ‘offers’ option in the ‘explore tab’ that will display promotional offers from local restaurants. Google said it has partnered with EazyDiner, a table reservation platform, to display offers from over 4,000 restaurants. The feature is live in 11 metro cities in India.

Restaurant offers are just the beginning, as the company plans to ink deals with more partners and expand to more categories in future, it said. Users can also book a table to a restaurant directly from the Maps app. Google did not reveal the financial

google maps

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Samsung backs Indus OS, three other startups in first investments for its VC arm in India


This post is by Manish Singh from TechCrunch


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Samsung Venture, the investment arm of the South Korean technology giant, has invested $8.5 million in Indus OS and three other Indian startups as the company’s VC fund begins its journey in the country.

Indus OS is a popular Android fork that has built a suite of localized applications focused on serving the masses in India. Samsung and Venturest funded the four-year-old startup’s $5.75 million Series B round.

Several smartphone vendors, including homegrown firms such as Micromax, Gioness, Intex, and Karbonn are customers of Indus OS, integrating many of its features into their handsets. Earlier this year, Samsung partnered with Indus OS to revamp its Galaxy App Store.

Rakesh Deshmukh, co-founder and CEO of Indus OS, told TechCrunch in an interview that the startup will use the fresh capital to develop more local solutions and build a software development kit for developers that will enable them to make

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Amazon expands Transparency anti-counterfeit codes to Europe, India and Canada


This post is by Ingrid Lunden from TechCrunch


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Amazon is no stranger to the nefarious forces of e-commerce: fake reviews, counterfeit goods and scams have all reared their heads on its marketplace in one place or another, with some even accusing it of turning a blind eye to them since, technically, Amazon profits from any transactions, not just the legit ones. The company has been working to fight that image, though, and today it announced its latest development in that mission: it announced that Transparency — a program to serialize products sold on its platform with a T-shaped QR-style code to identify when an item is counterfeit — is expanding to Europe, India and Canada. (More detail on how it actually works below.)

“Counterfeiting is an industry-wide concern – both online and offline. We find the most effective solutions to prevent counterfeit are based on partnerships that combine Amazon’s technology innovation with the sophisticated knowledge and capabilities

Screenshot 2019 07 10 at 11.47.45

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India’s NiYO ‘neo-bank’ raises $35 million to digitize payroll and employee benefits


This post is by Manish Singh from TechCrunch


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NiYo Solutions, a Bangalore-based ‘neo-bank’ that helps salaried employees access company benefits and other financial services, has raised $35 million in a new round to expand its business in the nation and explore international markets for some of its products.

The four-year-old startup, which serves small and medium businesses and other salaried employees across India, raised its Series B from Horizons Ventures, Tencent and existing investor JS Capital. It has raised $49.2 million to date, with its $13.2 million Series A closing in January last year.

NiYO Solutions serves as a ‘neo-bank’ that relies on traditional financial institutions (Yes Bank and DCB banks, in its case) and offers additional features such as lending and insurance to customers. Blue collared salaried employees in India continue to struggle to avail many crucial financial services that have been typically reserved for privileged segment by the banks. With Bharat Payroll Solution and

Continue reading “India’s NiYO ‘neo-bank’ raises $35 million to digitize payroll and employee benefits”

India’s NiYO ‘neo-bank’ raises $35 million to digitize payroll and employee benefits


This post is by Manish Singh from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




NiYo Solutions, a Bangalore-based ‘neo-bank’ that helps salaried employees access company benefits and other financial services, has raised $35 million in a new round to expand its business in the nation and explore international markets for some of its products.

The four-year-old startup, which serves small and medium businesses and other salaried employees across India, raised its Series B from Horizons Ventures, Tencent and existing investor JS Capital. It has raised $49.2 million to date, with its $13.2 million Series A closing in January last year.

NiYO Solutions serves as a ‘neo-bank’ that relies on traditional financial institutions (Yes Bank and DCB banks, in its case) and offers additional features such as lending and insurance to customers. Blue collared salaried employees in India continue to struggle to avail many crucial financial services that have been typically reserved for privileged segment by the banks. With Bharat Payroll Solution and

Continue reading “India’s NiYO ‘neo-bank’ raises $35 million to digitize payroll and employee benefits”

Spotify Lite for Android gets an official launch in 36 countries


This post is by Jon Russell from TechCrunch


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Spotify’s Lite app is now official. The app has been in beta since last year, and now Spotify is officially releasing it in 36 countries worldwide.

The app is designed to work on patchy or weak internet connections and, at just 10MB, it is small enough to cater to lower-end devices that have limited storage or older phones. Spotify Lite is limited to Android devices running version 4.3 or newer, and it is open to both paying and non-paying users. For those worried about maxing out their data plan, the app comes with an optional limit that can tell you when you are close to hitting that buffer.

Spotify claims that 90 percent of the features of the main app are available in Lite, in particular areas around multiple — including video and cover artist — are omitted as they are not critical to the core experience.

A

spotify

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PayU, Naspers’ global fintech firm, enters Southeast Asia with acquisition of Red Dot Payment


This post is by Jon Russell from TechCrunch


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PayU, the Naspers owned fintech firm that specializes in emerging markets, is broadening its global reach into Southeast Asia after it announced a deal to buy a majority stake in Singapore-based Red Dot Payment.

Naspers is best known for its payments and fintech business in markets like India, Latin America, Africa and Eastern Europe, but now it will enter Southeast Asia, a market with over 600 million consumers and rapidly rising internet access.

PayU plans to tap that potential through Red Dot, an eight-year-old startup founded by finance veterans which offers services that include a payment gateway, e-commerce storefronts and online invoicing across Southeast Asia. PayU said it has acquired “a majority stake” in the business. It did not specify the exact size but it did disclose that the deal values Red Dot at $65 million.

It isn’t clear exactly how much Red Dot had raised from investors overall —

Laurent Le Moal 2017

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What everyone at a startup needs to know about immigration


This post is by Arman Tabatabai from TechCrunch


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The immigration process in the U.S. has become a high-stakes undertaking for employers, workers, and entrepreneurs. Predictability has eroded. Processing times have soared. And any mistake or misstep now has dire consequences.

Over the past three years, immigration policies and procedures have been in a state of flux and the process has become more unforgiving for even the smallest mistakes. Putting your best foot forward is crucial. Employers and individuals need to formulate a long-term strategy and backup options to stay protected.

The increase in Requests for Evidence and the backlog for many visa and green card categories has meant longer

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Reliance Jio partners with Facebook to launch literacy program for first time internet users in India


This post is by Manish Singh from TechCrunch


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Mukesh Ambani, India’s richest man, has enabled tens of millions of people — if not more — to come online for the first time with his disruptive telecom network. He has changed how many Indians, once thrifty about each megabyte they spent browsing the internet, consume mobile data today.

But many of these first time internet users are increasingly struggling with grasping the nuances of the internet — often ending up trusting everything they see online and, in extreme cases, causing major chaos in the nation. Ambani now wants to help these people understand the ins and outs of the digital world.

His telecom network Reliance Jio announced today a literacy program called ‘Digital Udaan’ for first time internet users in India. The two-and-a-half-year-old telecom network, which has amassed more than 300 million subscribers, said it has partnered with Facebook to create “the largest ever digital literacy program” that

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Samsung shuts down its AI-powered Mall shopping app in India


This post is by Manish Singh from TechCrunch


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Samsung has quietly discontinued an app that it built specifically for India, one of its largest markets and where it houses a humongous research and development team. The AI-powered Android app, called Samsung Mall, was positioned to help users identify objects around them and locate it on shopping sites to make the purchase.

The company has shut down the app a year and a half after its launch. Samsung Mall was exclusively available for select company handsets and was launched alongside the Galaxy On7 Prime smartphone. News blog TizenHelp was first to report about the development.

At the time of the launch, Samsung said Mall app will complement Bixby, the company’s virtual assistant. Bixby already offers a functionality that allows users to identify objects through photos. But it does not let users make the purchase.

“The first insight while developing Samsung Mall was that consumers may be looking to find

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Ola Electric becomes India’s newest unicorn with new $250 million investment from SoftBank


This post is by Manish Singh from TechCrunch


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India’s Ola is further widening its lead over Uber in the nation — and getting the help it needs from their mutual investor. Ola Electric has raised $250 million from SoftBank as India’s largest ride hailing firm pushes to scale its electric vehicles business in the country.

The Series B financing round, details of which emerged in a filing to the local regulator on Tuesday, valued Ola Electric at $1 billion, a source familiar with the matter said.

The infusion comes as New Delhi looks to take a serious step in electrifying the existing fleet of cabs and scooters in the country as it attempts to curtail air pollution and carbon emissions. The country has set an ambitious goal to convert 40% of the fleet to electric by 2026.

Just so it happens, Ola has been working on electric vehicles for several years. The company is currently running several two-wheeler

Continue reading “Ola Electric becomes India’s newest unicorn with new $250 million investment from SoftBank”

Atlan raises $2.5M to stop enterprises from being so bad at managing data


This post is by Manish Singh from TechCrunch


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Even as much of the world is digitizing its governance, in small towns and villages of India, data about its citizens is still being largely logged on long and thick notebooks. Have they received the subsidized cooking gas cylinders? How frequent are the power cuts in the village? If these data points exist at all, they are probably stored in big paperbacks stacked in a corner of some agency’s office.

Five years ago, two young entrepreneurs — Prukalpa Sankar and Varun Banka — set out to modernize this system. They founded SocialCops, a startup that builds tools that make it easier for government officials — and anyone else — to quickly conduct surveys and maintain digital records that could be accessed from anywhere.

The Indian government was so impressed with SocialCops’ offering that it partnered with the startup on National Data Platform, a project to connect and bring more transparency

Atlan Discovery 2

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What’s up with Lidar, crypto mafias, influencer marketing, Shuttl, and assistive tech


This post is by Danny Crichton from TechCrunch


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Reminder: Extra Crunch discount on Sessions: Enterprise tickets

Come and watch TechCrunch interview enterprise titans and rising founders at the premier of TechCrunch Sessions: Enterprise in San Francisco on September 5th. Join 1000+ enterprise enthusiasts for a day of talks, demos, startups, and networking.

Book your $249 Early Bird tickets today and save an extra 20% as an Extra Crunch annual subscriber. Just contact extracrunch@techcrunch.com to snag your discounted tickets.

Startups at the speed of light: Lidar CEOs put their industry in perspective

Our science and AI correspondent Devin Coldewey has a blockbuster look at the current state of affairs in the lidar industry. What started as those gyrating “spinners” on top of partially autonomous cars has evolved into a variety of mechanisms like metameterials, all the while VCs have dumped hundreds of millions of dollars on to new ventures.

The big challenge today though is to move from

Continue reading “What’s up with Lidar, crypto mafias, influencer marketing, Shuttl, and assistive tech”

Shuttl is winning over office workers in India with safer bus commute option


This post is by Manish Singh from TechCrunch


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Miles away from the fancy parts of Gurgaon, where a cohort of Uber and Ola cars race all day to dot the surrounding, hundreds of people are working on a different solution to contribute to India’s push for improved mobility.

When Uber entered India six years ago, and its local rival Ola began to expand in the nation, many thought the two cab services will be able to meet the needs of most Indians. To be sure, the heavily discounted cab rides in the early days meant that the two companies were able to quickly scale their businesses to dozens of cities and were clocking about three million rides a day.

But in the years since, it has become clear that Ola and Uber alone can’t serve the masses — a significant portion of which lacks the means to book a cab ride — or magically circumvent through India’s

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Facebook’s content oversight board plan is raising more questions than it answers


This post is by Natasha Lomas from TechCrunch


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Facebook has produced a report summarizing feedback it’s taken in on its idea of establishing a content oversight board to help arbitrate on moderation decisions.

Aka the ‘supreme court of Facebook’ concept first discussed by founder Mark Zuckerberg last year, when he told Vox:

[O]ver the long term, what I’d really like to get to is an independent appeal. So maybe folks at Facebook make the first decision based on the community standards that are outlined, and then people can get a second opinion. You can imagine some sort of structure, almost like a Supreme Court, that is made up of independent folks who don’t work for Facebook, who ultimately make the final judgment call on what should be acceptable speech in a community that reflects the social norms and values of people all around the world.

Facebook has since suggested the oversight board will be up and running

Continue reading “Facebook’s content oversight board plan is raising more questions than it answers”

Pavegen, which harvests energy and data from footsteps, secures crowd and Hinduja Group funding


This post is by Mike Butcher from TechCrunch


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Pavegen, a UK startup which harvests energy from people’s footsteps and also tracks that data, has raised £2.6m on its crowdfunding push having doubled its initial £950k target.

The campaign secured funds from over 1,400 investors, including partnership and anchor investment from major global engineering conglomerate Hinduja Group and family investment firm Tamar Capital.

The Hinduja Group, whose Co-Chairmen topped the UK 2019 Rich List, aims to use the technology to reduce the cost of manufacturing and provide access to fast-growing markets in India and South East Asia.

The funding round follows expansion into 36 countries worldwide, and £1.8m in revenues in 2018, with installations including smart city developments, retail destinations, transport hubs and education institutions in Hong Kong, India, Korea, Thailand, UAE, UK & USA.

In 2018, Pavegen also signed a Memorandum of Understanding with global engineering and technology giant, Siemens, to develop smart city projects

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