Today’s top tech news, February 26: Scry raises US$120K and East Ventures launches a new fund
Also, Google Assistant is preparing to launch in Bahasa Indonesia and Samsung reveals its new S9
AI-based forecasting startup Scry raises US$120,000 — [Press Release]
Scry is a startup that thinks we put too much emphasis on the experts when it comes to predicting future events. To solve this problem it has built an AI-based platform to help businesses, governments and institutions make decisions.
The company leverages a population of ‘scryers’ — or people who answer questions according to what they find important. The company then processes the information through a proprietary algorithm provide predictive analysis to its clients.
Scry announced today it has raised US$120,000 from the AI-investment firm Zeroth-AI. The money will be used to further improve its machine algorithm technology.
“With Scry, we’re looking to connect predictors to people who want these predictions before they make major decisions. Businesses can lose billions in an instant if they aren’t prepared or can’t take advantage of consumer shifts. We hope to change all of that with Scry,” said Scry CEO and Co-Founder Justin Wang in a statement.
Samsumg launches Galaxy S9 with focus on the hardware — [Bloomberg]
Samsung used the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona to release the latest version of its flagship Galaxy phone series. The S9 — Samsung’s most direct competition to the iPhoneX — will look similar to the S8 but with improved speakers and a top-of-the-line mobile camera.
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According to Bloomberg, the headline grabber was the AR-based emoji system that will allow people to inject themselves into their use of everyone’s favourite texting characters. The phone will also have a real-time translator and its camera is expected to perform well at night.
Notably, the phone is significantly more affordable than the iPhoneX. The S9 will retail for about US$720 in the US. For comparison, the iPhoneX sells for US$1,100.
Google Assistant to launch in Bahasa Indonesia — [Daily Social]
Google announced that it will soon launch Google Assistant in Bahasa Indonesia. Though the Google Assistant service is already accessible in the Indonesian market, users still have to use either english or another of the seven foreign languages available.
According to DailySocial, the language is set to launch within, “the next few months”, the feature will first be available for Android and iOS smartphones, followed by other devices.
Google Assistant is the internet giant’s rebuttal to Amazon’s Alexa or Apple’s Siri.
Morpheus Labs raises US$6 million in ICO – [e27]
Morpheus Labs wants to use the blockchain to help people more quickly generate ideas and improve the brainstorming process. The company helps enterprises obtain services, tools and idea by soliciting from a crowd of experts using the platform.
Today it announced it has raised US$6 million in the first phase of its token sale. Morphieus Labs expects to raise around US$25 million once the ICO is completely finished.
“We are confident that we will achieve this (target). We have yet to include some countries in the roll-out, which explains the limited invitation basis,” Branson Lee, a Founding member of The Morpheus Labs, told e27.
The company has also signed into an MOU with Momentum Works, a Singaporean Venture Builder, to collaborate on ICO projects in Asia.
East Ventures hopes to build a US$100 million fund – [DealStreetAsia]
East Ventures, the Indonesia-focussed VC firm hopes to raise US$100 million in its seventh fund, according to DealStreetAsia . The report cites sources familiar with the situation and did not include a firm confirmation or denial from East Ventures.
If it comes to pass, the raise would be the largest fund from the VC firm, which hopes to complete the close by the end of 2018. The current largest fund managed by East Ventures is US$30 million.
East Ventures is an early stage investment firm that has invested in dozens of companies — including Tokopedia, Traveloka and Grab. Just last week, it invested in the startup Waresix, which connects SMEs to warehouse operators.
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