ChartMogul raises $900K from Point Nine Capital and others for its analytics platform

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Analytics platform ChartMogul has just completed a new seed round of funding, adding $900,000 to its coffers. Point Nine Capital led the round, which the company will use to accelerate its product development, including providing analytics for PayPal. ChartMogul declined to discuss its valuation.

Launched in December, Berlin-based ChartMogul helps Software as a Service (SaaS) and subscription businesses better understand their customers, along with where their recurring revenue is coming from. Through the use of what it calls “modern, simple to use cloud-based subscription intelligence platform,” ChartMogul aims to provide the necessary business intelligence tool for the subscription generation.

The company was started by Nick Franklin, an early team member at customer service platform Zendesk. ChartMogul has worked with customers like PivotalTracker, Nitro, Pipedrive, and others.

Other investors in the round include RTAventures VC, Zendesk cofounder and chief product officer Alexander Aghassipour, angel investors Michael Hansen, Tom James, and Gengo chief executive Matthew Romaine.

Franklin tells VentureBeat that ChartMogul has an “ambitious roadmap,” including a planned integration with PayPal in the near future, which will make it the first to provide full subscription analytics for the payment provider. Additionally, Franklin says new APIs will be released allowing ChartMogul’s customers to add more data sources to the platform.

Just like with any other company, ChartMogul isn’t done hiring. The company is going to look for customer success and marketing team members to help increase support for existing customers.

To date, ChartMogul has raised $1.5 million in funding, after having raised the first $600,000 in January.


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Founders Fund Leads $33.5M Round For Modumetal, Maker of Nanolaminated Metals For The Oil And Gas Industry

christinalomasney Founders Fund, the venture firm co-created by Peter Thiel, is entering yet another surprising area that you don’t commonly see with Silicon Valley VCs. They’re backing a materials sciences company called Modumetal, which is making nanolaminated metals for use in the oil and gas industry. With currently used metals, pipes and equipment can corrode pretty easily, leading to $2.2… Read More

New York venture capitalists wise up in light of stock market plunge

As stock markets begin to rally, and investors shift to recovery mode, venture capitalists are bracing themselves for what could happen next if another downturn occurs. Between last week - deemed the worst week for American stocks since 2011 - and the renewed sell-off on Monday , Silicon Alley players may be getting flashbacks from the 2008 timeframe, he told New York Business Journal.

This new app lets you control your Android phone from your computer

Vysor's Chrome app allows me to use my Moto X on my Toshiba Chromebook 2.

If you’ve ever gotten tired of picking up your Android phone while you’re sitting in front of your computer, well, you’re not the only one. A new Chrome app allows you to use your Android phone right from any computer that can run Chrome. It works on Windows, Mac OS X, and Chromebooks.

The new Vysor app comes from ClockworkMod, a company that has previously built several Android apps. It’s available in beta in the Chrome Web Store. In order to run the app, you’ll need to have Chrome 42 or a more recent version running on your computer. Then, once you’ve installed the app and chosen the right Android device that’s connected to your computer via USB, you’ll have to permit USB debugging using the pop-up dialog box that pops up on the Android device.

I was able to get my 2014 Motorola Moto X phone running remotely on my Chromebook and then on my Macbook Air.

Running my Moto X on my MacBook Air, thanks to Vysor.

Above: Running my Moto X on my MacBook Air, thanks to Vysor.

Image Credit: Screnshot

The launch of the app follows the rise of apps like Pushbullet, which last month started letting users send SMS messages on desktop. That’s useful in some instances. But with Vysor, you can do so much more — you can use any of your phone’s apps from the desktop and see it mirrored on the phone.

The app could be helpful for Android app developers. In fact, that’s what Koushik “Koush” Dutta, the founder of ClockworkMod, had been thinking when he developed Vysor, as he wrote in a Google+ post on the app today. But non-developers can use it for a wide variety of purposes, too.

Here’s a video of the app in action, courtesy of Dutta:










This Week On The TC Gadgets Podcast: Testing. Testing. Is This Thing On?

Not going to lie: I have no idea what this is. My attempted explanation is that we were told that we should do video podcasts, and instead of turning on a webcam like normal people, we decided to record ourselves within the world of Minecraft. Why did we choose to do it that way? I don’t know. Is it compelling in any way? Again, I don’t know. I do know, however, that we talk… Read More

Gmail will now automatically add Google Calendar events for emails with flight, hotel, restaurant, or ticket info

Google's new calendar app in action

Google today announced an update that brings Gmail and Google Calendar closer together. The new feature, which adds events to Google Calendar based on information in emails sent to your Gmail account, is rolling out this week to Google Apps customers on desktop, Android, and iOS.

When you receive an email in Gmail with flight, hotel, restaurant, or ticketed event information, a Google Calendar event will be automatically added to Google Calendar with the important data pulled right into the description. Better yet, Google Calendar will even update those events if plans change and a new email is received.

That means you no longer have to worry about creating Google Calendar events that include important information like flight numbers and check-in times. Furthermore, you also don’t have to update your events when a flight is delayed or a reservation pushed back.

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The Events for Gmail feature is being enabled by default, and events added from Gmail to Google Calendar will be visible only to calendar owners by default. Google Calendar owners can also delete any unwanted event, adjust visibility settings, or disable the feature altogether.

This feature is largely aimed at companies, as Google explained:

The Internet has made business travel — booking flights and hotels, reserving restaurant tables, buying event tickets, and more — infinitely easier. Adding that information to a calendar, on the other hand, has remained time-consuming and tedious, typically requiring people to copy and paste information from various confirmation emails.

That said, many business travelers won’t want this functionality. Google Calendar users will thus be getting an in-product popup that explains the feature and how to turn it off. After the first event from Gmail is added, a one-time email notification will also be sent to the user from Google Calendar, with the same details.

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Events from Gmail aren’t available for Google Apps for Work, Education, or Government accounts, though Google didn’t explain why. And of course, if you use a Google account that doesn’t have Gmail, the feature won’t be enabled either.

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RentBoy CEO, employees arrested in raid of Dotcom-era escort service

RentBoy

Federal agents have raided the Manhattan office of RentBoy.com, one of the Internet’s largest male escort sites, Pix11 reports.

CEO Jeffrey Hurant and several employees were reportedly arrested Tuesday on suspicion of conspiring to promote prostitution under the guise of offering “companionship” from its escorts, officials said.

Hurant and six current and former workers are expected to appear in court Tuesday afternoon.

The site, which was taken offline sometime Tuesday afternoon, hosts thousands of paid ads offering “companionship,” but prosecutors allege the site is actually pushing prostitution.

The criminal complaint

According to the affidavit, RentBoy’s slogan is “Money can’t buy you love…but the rest is negotiable.” The site also calls itself “the original and world’s largest male escort site,” and claims 500,000 daily unique visitors. The affidavit also claims that RentBoy accrued $10 million in revenue between 2010 and 2015.

From the criminal complaint:

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Users pay $59.95 a month for a basic subscription to RentBoy.com. The “platinum” tier costs $299.95. Advertising on the site can cost hundreds of dollars more, and users can pick the “sexual services they are willing to perform and the price charged,” prosecutors said.

If convicted, Hurant and his employees face up to 5 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

You can read the criminal complaint affidavit here.

A long-surviving holdout from the dotcom era, RentBoy.com was founded back in 1997. That the company is only taking heat now is remarkable, as similarly controversial tech firm Ashley Madison faces pressure from a high-profile leak.

Other tech companies, including Craigslist and Grindr, have also faced criticism for allegedly enabling prostitution.


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YouTube Gaming launches on iOS, Android, and Web tomorrow to take on Twitch

YouTube Gaming will bring Google head-to-head with Twitch.

After promising all summer to launch its Twitch competitor, YouTube is finally getting into the game.

YouTube Gaming, the video site’s centralized hub for everything related to the digital medium, launches tomorrow. This will give fans one place to get live and recorded content about the biggest, smallest, and most popular games. That’s because YouTube Gaming automatically populates with all gaming content from the site’s huge community of video creators. On top of consuming content, YouTube Gaming is also about enabling gamers to create more videos as Google is promising to make it easier than ever for people to livestream their games.

Gaming is among the most popular video-content categories on the Web. It is second only to music, and the top channel on all of YouTube is the screaming game player PewDiePie. YouTube has made a lot of money putting ads in front of those kinds of videos, but — in some areas — it has fallen behind upstart Twitch. But this YouTube Gaming initiative is largely about finding ways to catch up to (and surpass) that Amazon-owned competitor.


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To help establish YouTube Gaming as a brand of its own, Google is launching the hub online as well as on mobile. If you have an Android or iOS device, you can download the YouTube Gaming app from Google Play or App Store starting this week.

If you’re wondering what kind of experience you’ll get from those apps, YouTube explained that it’ll serve up more than 25,000 gaming pages. It’ll curate what each person sees based on the games and channels they like and watch.

YouTube will enable you to build a list of games that you enjoy.

Above: YouTube will enable you to build a list of games that you enjoy.

Image Credit: YouTube

In addition to the aforementioned app, YouTube is also trying to raise its profile among gamers by showing up to conferences and fan events. It already had a large booth and a number of major guests at the Electronic Entertainment Expo trade show in June. Now, this weekend, it is doing the same at the Penny Arcade Expo in Seattle. YouTube Gaming will have a full booth and stage show featuring some of its biggest content creators and partners.

 

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