mobile

Victorious in the Wireless Arena: Unleashing the Power of American Advantages

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We can’t compete against our global peers with that engine throttled by last-generation digital infrastructure and policy. They are already slowing investment in 5G network deployments and signaling their disinterest in 6G investment. If we create more game-changing wireless applications — from advanced manufacturing, to smart cities, to autonomous transport, to remote sensing — we create demand that pulls digital infrastructure forward. But we can’t compete against our global peers with that engine throttled by last-generation digital infrastructure and policy. We must acknowledge new realities and play to our strengths to reverse digital infrastructure deterioration.

Tencent’s Popular Game “Honor of Kings” Targets Expansion into MENA Region

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Honor of Kings, Tencent’s massively popular mobile game, has its eye set on the international market in 2024. In part thanks to its success with loot boxes, Honor of Kings has been an enormous financial success for Tencent. It was the world’s second-highest-grossing mobile game in December, trailing only after Monopoly Go!, according to market research firm Sensor Tower. As of February 6, Honor of Kings had amassed over 2 million pre-registrations across MENA, Eastern Europe and South Asia. With its flourishing gaming population, the MENA region will be an important test for Honor of Kings’ second try at global expansion.

Solana Mobile’s Journey to Break Even is Far From Over

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Solana Mobile still has a long way to go until it hits breakeven Solana Labs co-founder teases possibility of third mobile deviceLast month, Solana Mobile’s flagship web3 smartphone, the Saga, sold out. Last week the Solana Labs’ subsidiary launched its second phone and got over 40,000 preorders in less than a week. “After Saga sold out, it felt like there’s an opportunity and the timing in the market was right,” Anatoly Yakovenko, co-founder of Solana Labs, said on TechCrunch’s Chain Reaction podcast. “The timing [for the new phone] worked out right around that moment.”And if the second device is a success, there will be a third phone launched later on, Yakovenko hinted. “I think crypto was going through a hard bear market, and the Solana ecosystem was feeling the worst of it,” Yakovenko said.

“Solana Mobile’s Road to Profitability: A Journey Ahead”

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Solana Mobile still has a long way to go until it hits breakeven Solana Labs co-founder teases possibility of third mobile deviceLast month, Solana Mobile’s flagship web3 smartphone, the Saga, sold out. Last week the Solana Labs’ subsidiary launched its second phone and got over 40,000 preorders in less than a week. “After Saga sold out, it felt like there’s an opportunity and the timing in the market was right,” Anatoly Yakovenko, co-founder of Solana Labs, said on TechCrunch’s Chain Reaction podcast. “The timing [for the new phone] worked out right around that moment.”And if the second device is a success, there will be a third phone launched later on, Yakovenko hinted. “I think crypto was going through a hard bear market, and the Solana ecosystem was feeling the worst of it,” Yakovenko said.

Krafton Aims to Expand PUBG’s Dominance Through Franchise Expansion and Visual Enhancements

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Krafton has more in store for its battle royale shooting game PUBG, its biggest mobile title, according to Goldman Sachs. The South Korean firm is plotting “incremental updates” to its strategy to sustain and expand PUBG, Goldman Sachs said in a note Wednesday seen by TechCrunch. Major graphics upgrade is also in the works, Goldman Sachs said, adding that Krafton plans to use Unreal Engine 5 for a PUBG 2.0 revamp. The current version of PUBG uses a customized version of Unreal Engine 4. Epic Game’s latest iteration of the ubiquitous Unreal Engine offers developers significant advancements in achieving heightened realism and immersion at reduced performance costs.

“Murena, the Smartphone Company, Debuts its Own Mobile Network: Embracing a ‘De-Googled’ Approach”

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Murena, a French startup that sells “de-Googled” smartphones replete with its own flavor of Android, is launching an own-brand mobile network as it throws its hat into the fast-growing mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) ring. Murena Mobile, as the new service is called, is built atop T-Mobile and is available to U.S. customers only. With Murena Mobile now thrown into the mix, it has another recurring revenue stream to lean on. Additionally, customers can’t actually sign up for a Murena Mobile plan at the same time as buying one of its eSIM-supported devices — they have to complete that transaction separately. “In the future, we could think about a complete package with phone, cloud plan and a mobile plan all combined in a monthly subscription.”

EU Settlement: Apple’s Pledges to Resolve Antitrust Probe into Apple Pay

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The EU suspects Apple of unfairly favoring its own mobile payment tech, Apple Pay, and squeezing out the ability of rivals to develop competing contactless payment offerings on its mobile platform. It has also committed to applying “fair, objective, transparent, and non-discriminatory” eligibility criteria to grant NFC access to third parties — which will have to conclude an ADP license agreement to gain access. The Apple Pay competition saga dates back several years at this point. The Apple Pay case pre-dates ex ante competition legislation the bloc has since enacted and which Apple is subject to; having been designated, in September, as a so-called “gatekeeper” under the Digital Markets Act (DMA). And although Apple’s payment tech, Apple Pay, has not been designated a “core platform service” the iOS App Store has.

“Bullish Bitcoin ETF Volume Surges, Coinbase Faces Legal Battle, Solana Mobile Unveils Cutting-Edge Device, and Google Restricts Cryptocurrency Apps in Indian Market”

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Bitcoin spot ETF volume rose, Coinbase went to court, Solana Mobile announces new device and Google cuts crypto apps in IndiaWelcome to TechCrunch Crypto, formerly known as Chain Reaction. To get a roundup of TechCrunch’s biggest and most important crypto stories delivered to your inbox every Thursday at 12 p.m. PT, subscribe here. Prior to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s approval of the spot bitcoin ETFs, some experts told me they expected trading volumes to hit $10 billion in a year, not a week. Monica has spent the last 10 years at Ripple, working her way up from the director of communications to now, president. What else we’re writingWant to branch out from the world of web3?

Solana Mobile’s Second Phone Creates Massive Buying Surge, Pushing Preorders to Uphill Heights

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Solana Mobile is swinging for the stars after it announced a second, cheaper web3 phone phone dubbed “ Chapter 2 ” earlier this week. Demand for the Chapter 2 is apparently so high, Solana Mobile hit its 7-day sales goal within the first 24 hours, Raj Gokal, co-founder of Solana and president of Solana Labs, exclusively told TechCrunch. In the first 24 hours after the phone was announced, Solana Mobile saw over 25,000 preorders, and by the 30-hour mark, it had 30,000 preorders, Gokal said. “For developers, Solana Mobile is creating a massive opportunity for crypto app teams looking to incentivize their users,” Gokal said. “Giving back to the community has a snowball effect: As more developers start releasing crypto-incentivized apps to Solana Mobile users, we’ll see even greater adoption,” Gokal said.

Is the Startup World Overemphasizing Quality at the Expense of Innovation?

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When it comes to startups’ flight to quality, have we swung too far in the other direction? Hello, and welcome back to Equity, the podcast about the business of startups, where we unpack the numbers and nuance behind the headlines. This is our new Saturday show, where we sit down with a guest, think about their work, and unpack the rest. This week, we talked to Jenny Fielding, co-founder and managing partner at Everywhere Ventures, a founder collective and early-stage (think pre-seed) venture firm. Jenny and I discussed a wide variety of topics, including startups’ flight to quality in 2024 and how smaller firms are competing with larger firms in the current investment landscape.