To get a roundup of TechCrunch’s biggest and most important stories delivered to your inbox every day at 3 p.m. PDT, subscribe here.
Hey, folks! Chromecasts have been a hacker and nerd favorite for a moment or two, and we’re pretty psyched to see the price (with a remote!) dropping to $30. Apropos hardware, Brian and Kirsten just published our Apple Watch Ultra first look review, so we’ve been enjoying that, too. — Christine and Haje
The TechCrunch Top 3
No closing time here: E-commerce company acquirer OpenStore is defying the e-commerce aggregator odds by both doing well in this economy and raising funds, Christine writes. The 1-year-old company, started by Founders Fund’s Keith Rabois and Atomic’s Jack Abraham, raised $32 million in a round of funding that values the company at $970 million.
Startups and VC
Anyone who has to use a wheelchair regularly runs the risk of incurring injury from poor circulation. Kalogon believes it can mitigate this common but potentially life-threatening condition with a smart cushion that prevents any one part of the body from being compressed for too long — and it has already caught the eye of the VA, Devin reports.
Keeping up with tax compliance for cryptocurrency can be tricky, especially since many laws are new (or haven’t been written yet). That’s why Binocs was founded. Users integrate their exchanges and wallets, and Binocs provides a tax report and other accounting details. The startup announced today that it has raised $4 million to expand, Catherine reports.
And a few more from around the world (around the world):
If the sensors can’t go on the cars, let’s put them on the infrastructure: Seoul Robotics’ unusual approach to autonomous vehicle tech was reported by Kate.
Working from wherever: Remofirst raises $14.1 million to make it cheaper and easier for businesses to hire remote workers globally, reports Mary Ann.
When it comes to startup board participation, VCs and CEOs must do their jobs
Image Credits: Richard Drury (opens in a new window) / Getty Images
“You had one job” might be amusing if a birthday cake decoration goes wrong, but when we’re talking about executives who don’t show for board meetings, the stakes are much higher, writes Matt Blumberg, co-founder and CEO of Bolster.
“Disengaged or dysfunctional boards aren’t just bad for CEOs and LPs; they’re bad for everyone,” Blumberg says, a realization that spurred him to adopt a new meeting format that includes follow-up surveys.
“That is a lot of moving pieces to manage, but I find that doing so keeps the meeting fresh and well paced.”
More TC+ goodness:
Semiconductor party in the USA: Simon Butler explores what the CHIPS and Science Act means for the future of the semiconductor industry.
The running-track-shaped economy: Tim takes a closer look at how materials startup Novoloop brings its upcycled rubber to On’s new running shoe.
Tech for the planet: Tim and Haje take a closer look at the 5 most interesting startups in this IndieBio cohort.
TechCrunch+ is our membership program that helps founders and startup teams get ahead of the pack. You can sign up here. Use code “DC” for a 15% discount on an annual subscription!
Big Tech Inc.
Get ready to bite into a big Apple. Brian put on his reviewer hat and took a look at the AirPods Pro, which he said had “some really welcome additions to one of the best pair of earbuds out there.” And Brian and Kirsten tried out the Apple Watch Ultra, where one of their concluding views was “the Ultra is much more than an Apple Watch dressed up in a rugged case.”
Adam Levine wishes this existed already: Ivan reports that Instagram is testing a nudity protection filter for direct messages so that users of the social media app don’t have to see unsolicited nude messages. Too bad there isn't a feature yet to warn you against sending certain messages…
Not playing games: India’s Department of Telecommunications is proposing the regulation of internet communication services that would require platforms to obtain a license before they could operate in the market. Jagmeet has more.
That’s a large chunk of “chain”: Authorities in South Korea uncovered another $680 million in “abnormal” crypto-linked foreign exchange transactions, Kate reports. If you’re keeping score at home, that’s now a total of $7.2 billion since June.