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Meituan, the Tencent-backed "one-stop super app," files for IPO in Hong Kong
After months of speculation, Meituan, the largest service booking app in China, confirmed that it has filed for a public offering. The company's IPO application was submitted to the Hong Kong stock exchange earlier today and is being sponsored by Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Bank of America Merrill Lynch. A spokesperson for Meituan said the company is currently not disclosing information about fundraising amount or valuation. Meituan was created after Meituan and Dianping, two competitors in the group deals space, merged in 2015.
How Sheffield Doc/Fest 2018's VR showcase beat E3
We're stepping over cables, ducking under scaffolding and trying to hear each other over the drone of drilling on the first day of Sheffield Doc/Fest. Tucker needn't be so apologetic; it's painfully clear that we're on a late start simply because Doc/Fest is trying to make a VR exhibition unlike anything you've ever seen before. In addressing these issues, these projects are breaking new ground in VR and digging into the heart of the medium.
Inside Rover's DogVacay deal: Why the former rivals went with one brand, not two, after acquisition
Since Zillow Group acquired Trulia in 2015, for example, it has operated the Zillow and Trulia real estate services independently. The same thing happened with Grubhub's 2013 acquisition of Seamless, a landmark deal in the restaurant delivery business. Easterly said Rover and DogVacay had considered three options for the combination: maintaining two separate brands, merging the two back-ends and having separate front-ends, or the full absorption of DogVacay into the Rover brand.
Fintech friends: Monzo partners with TransferWise for international payments
Two good friends just got even better , replies TransferWise co-founder Kristo Krmann laughing, while Monzo co-founder Tom Blomfield, who is also on the video call, smiles approvingly. The partnership, which TechCrunch outed nearly three weeks ago, will see TransferWise power international payments for the UK challenger bank's 750,000 customers. Asked why Monzo has chosen to work with TransferWise, Blomfield reiterates the challenger bank's goal of becoming a hub or control centre for your money.
Zcash: life on the crypto roller coaster
When it comes to Zcash, crypto means both cryptocurrency and cryptography, for once. If they don't, and if they subsequently collaborated, they'd then have the ability to create free Zcash out of thin air. Zcash was initiated with a complex six-person ritual, and if any one of those people was honest then the Zcash network is free of this so-called toxic waste taint.
GungHo aims for broader audience with Ninjala bubble gum game
Ninjala is a ninja action game where you play as cartoon characters from three different clans, all vying for one object. Instead of shooting with paint, you hit each other with bats and craft new weapons from bubble gum. They hope it can reach a wide audience because it's a cartoon action game but it isn't that violent. That's a luxury that many other companies don't have, and it enables the company to experiment with other titles such as Ninjala.
HTC Vive's Libraries Program will bring VR headsets to 110 libraries
Almost a year ago to the date Oculus announced an initiative to bring VR headsets to 90 different California libraries. Now, HTC has announced the Vive Libraries Program, which is set to bring VR headsets to 110 different libraries in California and Nevada. It's hard to know how similar the programs are beyond the obvious, but it's great to see more commitment to democratizing VR for uses other than gaming.
When anyone can make games, 'soul' will make some rise to the top
When Apple's App Store empowered virtually anyone to create iOS software, it quickly flooded with garbage - fart apps, tip calculators, and plenty of junky games. Even if a store isn't hit with 80,000 new releases each year, it's hard for games to stand out. Steam's storefront reportedly saw over 7,500 PC titles released in 2017 - that's an average of more than 20 games every single day.
Game Boy emulator Gearboy has an Oculus Go port
Reddit user CidVonHighwind has ported Gearboy, a Game Boy and Game Boy Color emulator, to the new Oculus Go headset. You can download the emulator via GitHub and then follow these instructions for sideloading apps onto Oculus Go. This is a great way to experience some old classics in an entirely new way. In fact, it reminds us a little of the VR NES emulator for Rift/Vive which actually uses an algorithm to turn 2D games into 3D experiences to enjoy in VR.
Snag your super early-bird passes for Disrupt Berlin 2018
It's time for all you European startup fans to go catch super early-bird tickets to TechCrunch Disrupt Berlin 2018 on November 29-30. Our Berlin Disrupt events have drawn participants from more than 50 countries across Europe, Asia and beyond. At Disrupt Berlin 2017, CrunchMatch generated a total of 888 meetings - and 97 percent of participants said they'd use the service again. Disrupt Berlin 2018 takes place on November 29-30, 2018 at the Arena Berlin.
Candy crushes: King dethrones PlayStation at top of most-seen TV game ads chart
These are the ads, and by extension the games, that game makers are putting major muscle behind. Below are the top five most-seen gaming industry TV advertisers from May 16 through June 15. King takes over as the gaming company with the most-seen ads, generating over 513.6 million impressions from its six ads that aired 3,100 times. PlayStation slips to second place with 488.3 million impressions resulting from five commercials that aired 1,200 times.
Immortals acquires Brazilian esports brand and picks up new sponsors
Global esports team organization Immortals said it has acquired the Brazilian brand MIBR and hired the team roster for the Brazilian SK Gaming Counter-Strike: Global Offensive team. In addition, Immortals is announcing sponsor partnerships with dating app Tinder and online gambling site, Betway. Such sponsors could go a long way toward making esports teams financially sustainable. We are eager to invest in the Brazilian esports scene and to create a platform for the region's amazing professional esports talent to continue to excel and dominate.
In Army of None, a field guide to the coming world of autonomous warfare
Earlier this year, AI researchers around the world joined petitions calling for a boycott of any research that could be used in autonomous warfare. The first challenge that belies these petitions on autonomous weapons is that these systems already exist, and are already deployed in the field. Scharre does a superb job covering the ground of the various schools of thought around the ethics of autonomous warfare, and how they intersect and compete.
The case for the middle-aged entrepreneur
Tech hubs - and by extension tech investors - have become mecca for ambitious innovators in search of their entrepreneurial dreams. Unfortunately, older entrepreneurs in their 40s and 50s can feel at a disadvantage when it comes to raising money. Across different high-technology sectors, entrepreneurial hubs, and firms with successful exits, the median age remained about the same. A 50-year-old entrepreneur was found to be 1.8 times as likely to start a successful company as a 30-year-old.
Open source sustainability
Open source projects often have many contributors, but only a handful of individuals are truly driving a particular project forward. When moneymaking time is not time spent on open source, then it competes with open source, he said. We are trying to make open source better for everyone involved, and that includes both the creators and users of open source, he said. Where Tidelift is focused on commercialization and software guarantees, Open Collective wants to open source the monetization of open source itself.
The story behind Nintendo's betrayal of Sony
Ken Kutaragi, the Sony engineer who initiated the whole project, saw the partnership as the first step to achieving his dream of getting Sony to start making game consoles. The day after Sony gave its announcement, Nintendo announced it was dropping Sony and was now working with its Dutch rival Philips instead. If Nintendo had hoped to push Sony out of the games business the move backfired.
Raph Koster's Postmortems helps online game devs avoid past mistakes
Raph Koster has a lot to say about making online games, as he's been working on them for more than two decades. The lessons focus on game design, online community theories, and candid self-evaluation from working at companies such as Origin Systems, Sony Online Entertainment, and Metaplace. In a quarter-century of writings and talks, he has offered up game design lessons, online community theories, and candid self-evaluation.
The Void's upcoming VR horror show will terrify
I heard it coming closer as I pointed my head down and closed my eyes. I crossed my arms to rub the goosebumps and tried to laugh off the feeling something had grabbed me. The Voud's first public VR experiences draw people to venues with the promise of stepping into a world made famous on the big screen. The weapon provides a sense of security in Ghostbusters, for example, when spirits are ready to rush at you.
Cloud gaming has potential, but its execution isn't a breeze
We talked about the future of cloud gaming at a breakfast sponsored by Akamai during the recent Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3). I wrote some of the first stories on OnLive, and then some of the last stories, when it went away. What's interesting about the panel is that I think the panel represents the three key questions for cloud gaming. When I talk about cloud gaming I'm talking about remote control games, server-based games.

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