FACT CHECK: Are 'Illegal Immigrants' to Blame for Measles Outbreaks Across the US? – Snopes.com

  1. FACT CHECK: Are ‘Illegal Immigrants’ to Blame for Measles Outbreaks Across the US?  Snopes.com
  2. Measles outbreak hits 25-year high with 704 cases reported so far  CBS This Morning
  3. Should Adults Get a Measles Booster Shot?  The New York Times
  4. Cuomo finally rails against religious exemptions for vaccines  New York Post
  5. NYC closes 2 Jewish schools over measles outbreak  Arutz Sheva
  6. View full coverage on Google News

Source: Google News | FACT CHECK: Are 'Illegal Immigrants' to Blame for Measles Outbreaks Across the US? – Snopes.com

Former Google chief Eric Schmidt steps down from Alphabet's board

Former Google CEO Eric Schmidt is not seeking reelection to the board of directors of Alphabet, Google's parent company. Schmidt will step down from the board after his current term expires on June 19th, 2019, Alphabet announced on Tuesday. Schmidt w…
Source: Engadget | Former Google chief Eric Schmidt steps down from Alphabet's board

SoftBank makes a huge bet on Latin America

Rappi represents a new era for Latin American technology startups.

Based in Bogotá, Colombia, the on-demand delivery startup has taken the region by storm, attracting a record amount of venture capital funding in mere months. Today marks the beginning of a new round of explosive growth as SoftBank, the Japanese telecom giant and prolific Silicon Valley tech investor, has confirmed a $1 billion investment in the business.

The king-sized financing comes two months after SoftBank announced its Innovation Fund, a new pool of capital committed to spending billions on the growing tech ecosystem in Central and South America.

VC funding in Latin America catapulted to new heights in 2018. Startups located across Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia and more have secured nearly $2.5 billion since the beginning of 2018, according to PitchBook, up from less than $1 billion invested in 2017.

SoftBank plans to transfer the Rappi investment to the Innovation Fund “upon the fund’s establishment,” according to a press release. For now, the SoftBank Group and affiliated Vision Fund will each invest $500 million in the company. Jeffrey Housenbold, a managing director at SoftBank responsible for investments in Brandless, Opendoor and DoorDash, will join Rappi’s board of directors.

“SoftBank’s vision of accelerating the technology revolution deeply resonated with our mission of improving how people live through digital payments and a super-app for everything consumers need,” Rappi co-founder Sebastian Mejia said in a statement. “We will continue to focus on building innovations for couriers, restaurants, retailers and start-ups that translate into new sources of growth.”

The latest round, the largest ever for a Latin American tech startup, brings Rappi’s total raised to date to a whopping $1.2 billion. The company was valued at more than $1 billion last year with a $200 million financing.

Rappi is among few venture-backed “unicorns” based in Latin America. São Paulo-based Nubank, a fast-growing fintech startup, garnered a $4 billion valuation last year with a $180 million investment.

Rappi didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.


Source: Tech Crunch Startups | SoftBank makes a huge bet on Latin America

New York City's MTA will support Apple Pay in early summer

If you're a New Yorker, you won't have to wait long to use Apple Pay for mass transit. As part of a call discussing Apple's latest earnings, Tim Cook revealed that New York City's transit system would support Apple Pay in early summer, narrowing down…
Source: Engadget | New York City's MTA will support Apple Pay in early summer

Warrantless searches of Americans’ data spiked 28 percent in 2018

An annual transparency report published by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence shows warrantless searches of Americans' data jumped 28 percent in 2018. According to the report, the National Security Agency (NSA) conducted 9,637 warran…
Source: Engadget | Warrantless searches of Americans’ data spiked 28 percent in 2018

YouTube wants more YouTubers in its 'Trending' feed

YouTube chief Susan Wojcicki has answered mounting concerns about how it handles content, including who gets the most coveted promotions. She acknowledged feedback that the "Trending" section tended to rehash content "again and again," and vowed tha…
Source: Engadget | YouTube wants more YouTubers in its 'Trending' feed

All the important stuff from Facebook’s F8 keynote

Facebook hosted the opening keynote for its annual developer's conference today and announced several updates to its main social network as well as Instagram, Whatsapp and Messenger. Privacy seems to be the name of the game this year, as Facebook tri…
Source: Engadget | All the important stuff from Facebook’s F8 keynote

Spot.IM raises $25M to help publishers engage with readers

Spot.IM announced today that it has raised $25 million in Series D funding.

We’ve written about the company’s commenting platform before, but CEO Nadav Shoval said it’s now building a broader “community platform.”

That means going beyond commenting and moderation to also include community pages and other ways to highlight and monetize user-generated content. The company’s customers include Hearst, Refinery29, Fox News and our corporate siblings at Engadget and AOL.com.

Shoval argued that these tools are particularly important as digital media business models are struggling — regardless of whether those publishers are focused on advertising, subscriptions or other models, the key is to focus on loyal readers and  viewers rather than “random users that come in and disappear.”

Spot.IM can make a big difference in this area by keeping users engaged, and by providing data to help publishers understand their behavior and value. In fact, Shoval said that for some publishers, a Spot.IM user will provide five times as much lifetime revenue as a non-Spot.IM user.

“We do believe it’s about better understanding: Who are our users, what do they want and how can we provide them with more value?” he added.

The company has now raised a total of $63 million, according to Crunchbase. The new funding was led by previous investor Insight Venture Partners with participation from Norma Investments (representing businessman Roman Abramovich), AltaIR Capital, Cerca and WGI Group (founded by Noah Goodhart, Jonah Goodhart and Mike Walrath).

Spot.IM is also announcing that it has appointed tech and media executive Itzik Ben-Bassat as president and as a member of its board of directors.


Source: Tech Crunch Startups | Spot.IM raises M to help publishers engage with readers

Apple's services are making more money than ever

Usually, when Apple releases its quarterly earnings, you'll find a quote from CEO Tim Cook that at least mentions the iPhone — after all, it accounts for the single biggest chunk of the company's quarterly takings. This time, though, the word "iPhon…
Source: Engadget | Apple's services are making more money than ever