All posts in “Mobile”

Mobile advertising startup Databerries raises $16M

Databerries is announcing that it has raised $16 million in Series A funding — money that will help the Paris-headquartered company launch in the United States.

The startup describes its approach as “real life targeting.” It works with brick-and-mortar retailers to direct their ads at consumers who have been to their store or a competitor’s store, then allows those retailers to measure when their ads actually result in store visits.

The platform was first launched in December 2015, and the company says it works with more than 100 businesses, including Toys R Us and McDonalds.

The new funding was led by Index Ventures, with participation from ISAI, Mosaic Ventures, former Criteo COO Pascal Gauthier and former Criteo President Greg Coleman (now president at BuzzFeed).

If you’re wondering about the Criteo connection, CEO Benoit Grouchko was previously a manager at the French adtech company. Grouchko founded Databerries with COO François Wyss (a former Googler who’s leading the team in the US) and CTO Guillaume Charhon.

“Databerries offers retailers a traffic acquisition solution that works for offline marketing, but also leverages the online advertising standards the industry has become used to: accurate targeting, personalization, performance measurement and return on investment optimization,” Grouchko said in the funding release. “As a result, Databerries is leveling the playing field between pure ecommerce and brick and mortar.”

Featured Image: Mix3r/Shutterstock

ARM’s next-gen chip design puts the focus on artificial intelligence

ARM tipped its hand today with the announcement of DynamIQ, a new technology it says will lay the groundwork for its next generation of mobile processors. Like other mobile chip makers, the company’s got a lot to contend with when it comes to future-proofing its offerings, and certainly ARM’s making some pretty big claims for what it’s calling its “biggest micro-architectural shift since […] 2011”

Central to the company’s speed boasts are its focus on future artificial intelligence, an aspect of technology that will continue to grow more central to mobile computing over the next several years, both through the proliferation of smart-assistants, autonomous vehicles and beyond.

The chipmaker certainly isn’t being modest in its AI claims, with a stated 50x boost in performance for the technology over the next three to five years, a number it says is potentially “conservative […] as its only building out projections based on AI algorithms they know about or have access to.”

Nor is ARM understated in its planned ubiquity for the technology. As with offerings from other mobile chip makers, the company is targeting a wide range of different computing platforms that move well beyond mobile. And certainly it’s well positioned to deliver on that front, having already proven itself a versatile component maker during the explosion of IoT devices over the past several years.

The company is positioning DynamIQ chips for cars (accounting for the added workload of autonomous vehicles) and connected home devices, in addition to smartphones and the like. Microsoft has already laid some of the groundwork for additional applications back in December when it announced that it would be bringing its apps to the company’s mobile processors, in an attempt to get hardware makers to build a wider variety of devices for the operating system.

Redmond also gave ARM a little bit more love last week when it announced that it would allow for Windows Server OS to run on the company’s chips. That news was a bit of a preview of today’s announcement, as the DynamIQ architecture sees the company pushing even further into server/cloud computing hardware, along with newfound networking applications.

ARM’s not giving exact dates for the technology’s anticipated arrival, only stating that it expects its hardware partners to ship an additional 100 billion ARM-based chips by the year 2021, having shipped roughly half that number between 2013 and 2017.

Google Maps adds Parking Reminders, following in the footsteps of Apple Maps

Why it matters to you

Keeping tabs on where you parked can be hard. Luckily, Google Maps is here to make it easier for you with a new feature in Android.

You already have to keep track of so much during the day, and so your precious brain space ought not be crowded with petty information like where you parked your car. Luckily, Google Maps agrees, and is here to help. In the app’s newest beta on Android, you’ll be able to tap a little blue dot that represents your car in order to leave yourself a parking reminder. It’s an option that Apple Maps has actually had for quite some time (the iEmpire first began offering its users parking reminders last year), but better late than never, Google.

Once you’ve tapped on that familiar little blue dot, you’ll be able to enter notes and take photos that will help guide you to the exact location of your vehicle. So whether you’re in an expansive parking lot in suburbia or a winding parking garage in the middle of a big city, you’ll have the information you need to find your ride.

MoreExplore 360-degree panoramas of an amazing volcanic crater in Google Maps

And if you happen to be in a metered spot, Google Maps will also let you input data on how much time you have left, setting a timer to remind you to either high-tail it back to your car, or pay the piper.

While this is all very useful, the bummer is that none of this process is actually automated. That means that while you don’t have to recall the location of your car, you will have to recall the need to manually set a reminder for yourself, and manually enter all the details. This differs from the Apple Maps feature, which does allow users to create parking reminders without having to input a ton of additional information.

As it stands, the Parking Reminders feature is just in the beta version of the Android app. But soon, it’ll probably be coming to Google Maps on iOS, too, and will debut in public form.

Laptops and tablets expected to be banned from some flights to the U.S. over security fears

Why it matters to you

If you’re about to fly to the U.S. and you think your airline could be affected, you might want to check ahead so you can sort out your tech gear before you board.

U.S. security officials have reportedly told twelves airlines from around eight different countries to prevent passengers from taking particular tech devices into the cabin on flights heading to the U.S.

Multiple news outlets, among them Reuters and the Associated Press, suggested the move by the Transport Security Administration (TSA) was in response to a possible terror threat. An official announcement about the new rule is expected on Tuesday.

Passengers on mostly Middle Eastern and African airlines will be asked to check in electronic devices such as laptops, tablets, e-readers, and cameras rather than carry them on as hand luggage. Mobile phones and medical devices are expected to be allowed into the cabin.

U.S. airlines are unlikely to be affected by the new rule, the reports said.

Notification of the ban went out in a TSA email described as “confidential” on Monday, with airlines given 96 hours to comply, according to the Guardian.

More: TSA partners with American to improve airport security

An unnamed U.S. government official told CNN that embassy officials have been contacting affected airlines to inform them of the change in rules.

In a tweet that has since been deleted, Royal Jordanian Airlines told its passengers that on flights to and from the U.S., “carrying any electronic or electrical device on board the flight cabins is strictly prohibited.”

It added that “laptops, tablets, cameras, DVD players and electronic games … etc, can be carried in the checked baggage only.”

Sam Thielman/Twitter

The airline said the rule will go into effect on March 21, suggesting an official announcement could be coming from the TSA in the next 24 hours.

It’s currently unclear which specific airlines are likely to be impacted by the new regulations, though full details are expected to be disclosed some time on Tuesday.

The advice to passengers who don’t want to be caught up at check-in having to repack their possessions is to keep an eye on the news in the coming days, and, if in any doubt, to check with their carrier before heading to the airport.

Swarovski is indefinitely postponing the launch of its ‘smartwatch for women’

Why it matters to you

Swarovski’s female-focused smartwatch is staying on the shelf for now, and we have no idea how long it will be there.

We’ve been waiting for a smartwatch from Swarovski for some time now, but it looks like we may have to wait a little longer — the company has announced that it is indefinitely postponing the release of its “smartwatch for her.”

The news is a little frustrating. The Swarovski smartwatch was first announced at CES 2017, and at the time was being pitched as a smartwatch specifically for women. It was long expected that we would see the device officially unveiled at watch and jewelry show Baselworld 2017, but now there’s no expected date.

More: Huawei Watch 2 Sport vs. Huawei Watch 2 Classic: Which one is right for you?

“Swarovski has decided to postpone its smart device initiative and will not present new smart device products at Baselworld 2017. Swarovski is simply not ready yet. We cannot yet make any statement regarding the timing of the launch,” said the company in a statement to Wareable.

When the watch is finally launched, it will most likely be an Android Wear device with a Qualcomm chip — as Swarovski first announced the existence of a device through a partnership with the two companies.

Qualcomm and Swarovski offered a teaser of the announcement at CES 2017, and what we know at this point is that the smartwatch will pack a Qualcomm processor. While it’s Swarovski’s first smartwatch, the company has collaborated with Misfit and Huawei in the past on devices such as the Huawei Watch Ladies. It looks like Swarovski will continue to target women with the watch, as it does with most of its products.

This year is a big one for Android Wear due to the anticipated release of Android Wear 2.0, which will feature a major revamp of the operating system. Hardly any Android Wear watches were released in 2016, and the smartwatch market in general is in decline. But Google is optimistic and is expected to release its own smartwatches this year alongside the launch of 2.0. We can expect to see more smartwatches with 2.0 from other manufacturers in the coming months as well.

More: Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 835 is tailor-made for VR and superfast charging

Android Wear 2.0 features stand-alone apps that do not require the phone to be connected, access to the Google Play Store, support for NFC payments and Android Pay, Assistant integration on select devices, and more.

We’ll update this article as we hear more about the Swarovski smartwatch.

Updated on 03-20-2017 by Christian de Looper: Added news that Swarovski indefinitely postponed smartwatch launch.