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Engadget readers can save $20 on August’s fourth-generation smart lock

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With its fourth-generation model, August has one of the best smart locks on the market. It’s easy to install, works with most digital assistants and lets you keep using your existing mechanical locks. At $249 it is more expensive than some other smart locks, but starting today you can save $20 by using the code ENGADGETLOCK at checkout. That brings it down to $229, which is the cheapest price we’ve seen to date.

Buy August Smart Lock WiFi (4th-gen) on Wellbots for $229

August’s latest smart lock is nearly half the size of previous models, comes in silver or black and is invisible from the exterior. It features door-sensing tech that informs you when your door is closed and locked, voice control via Alexa and the Google Assistant (via August Connect), an activity feed to track who comes and goes and the ability to automatically lock itself behind you. It works on iOS or Android phones and is 2.4 Ghz WiFi compatible.

It takes around 10 minutes to install, August says, and doesn’t require any complicated tools. We found that it worked great even on double doors with deadbolts that didn’t quite line up. Once it’s in place, you can still use your door and keys as you normally would. However, the smart features will make your lock a lot more useful, as you’ll be able to just leave without locking it yourself, send digital “keys” to guests and more.

Follow @EngadgetDeals on Twitter for the latest tech deals and buying advice.

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Source: https://www.engadget.com/good-deal-august-fourth-gen-smart-lock-090031033.html

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Shanghai soars more than 5%, leading gains in Asia as ‘bull sentiment’ drives markets

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Stocks in Asia Pacific were higher during Monday’s trading session. Shares in mainland China led regional gains.

The Shanghai composite soared 5.34% while the Shenzhen component rose 3.717%. The Shenzhen composite also jumped 3.6%.

Jackson Wong, asset management director at Amber Hill Capital, told CNBC in an email that “bull sentiment” in mainland Chinese shares was “driving the markets.”

Wong said the “sudden surge” in trading volume, as well as a break out for the Shanghai composite last week, raised investor expectations that “another bull run is coming.” Some of the reasons he suggested for the uptick in sentiment included the country being less affected by the coronavirus outbreak at the moment.

BOCOM International’s Hao Hong told CNBC that the Shanghai composite has “broken through” its 850-day long-term moving average.

“The market continues to believe that the central bank will ease more, as seen by China’s recent credit and monetary expansion,” said Hong, who is managing director and head of research at the firm. However, he added: “In China, the bull comes as swiftly as it leaves.”

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index also saw robust gains and rose 3.34%.

Elsewhere in the region, the Nikkei 225 in Japan rose 1.83% while the Topix index added 1.6%. South Korea’s Kospi advanced 1.64%.

Meanwhile, shares in Australia bucked the regional trend and edged lower, with the S&P/ASX 200 dipping 0.42%.

Overall, the MSCI Asia ex-Japan index jumped 1.6%.

The moves upward regionally came despite the World Health Organization saying Saturday that more than 200,000 coronavirus cases were confirmed over a 24-hour period — a record.

Over in the U.S., the states of Florida and Texas reported daily record spikes in coronavirus cases on Saturday. The recent surge in cases has raised concerns over the possibility of lockdowns being reintroduced to curb the virus’ spread, that could put a dent on the prospects for economic recovery.

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was last at 96.896 after touching an earlier high of 97.195.

The Japanese yen traded at 107.68 per dollar after strengthening from levels above 108 against the greenback last week. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.6968 following a rise from levels around $0.684 in the previous trading week.

Oil prices were mixed in the afternoon of Asian trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures up 0.93% to $43.20 per barrel. U.S. crude futures, on the other hand, shed 0.15% to $40.59 per barrel.

Source: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/07/06/asia-markets-coronavirus-us-china-tensions-currencies-in-focus.html

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Business Insider

Here’s an exclusive look at the pitch deck robot startup BotsAndUs used to raise $2.5 million

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  • UK-based robot startup BotsAndUs has raised £2 million ($2.5 million) from VC investors Kindred Capital and Capnamic Ventures. 
  • The company secured its first institutional funding round during coronavirus amid an increase in demand and enquiries for its services. 
  • “COVID-19 has pushed autonomous tech into spotlight and it’s ready to be deployed in these dynamic areas and we can benefit from it,” BotsAndUs CEO and cofounder Andrei Danescu told Business Insider in an interview. “People have snapped out of their uncertainty with covid and realised the potential of robots which has accelerated everything.”
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories. 

Robotic automation startup BotsAndUs is hoping that the reopening of public places in Europe will lead to a boom in its product’s use. 

People are understandably concerned about the prospect of catching COVID-19 in busy, enclosed spaces like airports and retail centres from other members of the public. One potential solution: robots. 

The startup has just raised £2 million ($2.5 million) from VC investors Kindred Capital and Capnamic Ventures to continue scaling its operation amid a boom in demand during coronavirus. The company’s robots can offer 24/7 customer service and can help businesses to do on-site data collection and analytics.

“COVID-19 has pushed autonomous tech into spotlight and it’s ready to be deployed in these dynamic areas and we can benefit from it,” BotsAndUs CEO and cofounder Andrei Danescu told Business Insider in an interview. “People have snapped out of their uncertainty with COVID-19, and realized the potential of robots which has accelerated everything.”

The company’s funding round is its first institutional investor round having previously received funding from  the European Union’s Horizon 2020, Innovate UK and accelerators such as Robot Union and GENIUS NY. This funding takes the startup’s total funds raised to $6 million. 

Among BotsAndUs’ clients are MediaMarktSaturn, Heathrow Airport, British Airways and travel services firm Dnata.

“It’s been challenging because we are a full-stack solution,” Danescu added. “We design the hardware, do the software, and engage with customers, many of our suppliers and supply chains have been disrupted by COVID-19.”

Additionally, getting funding entirely over video was no small task either. “It’s a lot harder to get a feel for investors over video,” Danescu said.

The funding will go towards industrializing the company’s processes while adding to the four staff members who have been hired and onboarded remotely during the past few months. 

Check out BotsAndUs’ pitch deck below:

Source: https://www.businessinsider.com/botsandus-robot-automation-startup-raises-2-5-million-2020-7

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Uber reportedly agrees to acquire Postmates for $2.65 billion

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Uber has reportedly agreed to buy Postmates in an all-stock deal worth $2.65 billion. According to Bloomberg, the deal may be announced on Monday morning.

Like other travel- and transportation-related businesses, Uber’s ride-hailing segment has been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, due to shelter-in-place orders throughout the United States. On-demand delivery, however, has grown, with people relying on services like Uber Eats to get food without leaving their homes. According to its last earnings report, Uber’s ride-hailing gross bookings dropped, but its food delivery service saw gross sales growth of 54% during its first fiscal quarter.

According to previous reports, Uber made an offer to buy Grubhub, another on-demand delivery service, earlier this year, but after that deal fell through, it approached Postmates. Bloomberg reports that Uber and Postmates have actually talked on and off for about four years, but negotiations became more intense about a week ago.

Grubhub ended up being acquired by Just Eat Takeway in a deal worth $7.3 billion after its negotiations with Uber stalled.

With a valuation of $2.4 billion, Postmates is a smaller company than Grubhub. The company filed to go public in February 2019, but decided to hold off because of “choppy market” conditions.

If the deal goes through, the main competitors in the American food delivery market would be Uber Eats/Postmates versus Grubhub/Takeaway versus DoorDash.

In other countries, companies like Grab have also begun building out their on-demand delivery services to make up for losses from fewer ride-hailing bookings. For example, Grab responded to stay-at-home orders in Indonesia (its main market) and other Southeast Asian countries by re-deploying ride-hailing drivers to on-demand deliveries for food and essential items.

Source: https://techcrunch.com/2020/07/05/uber-reportedly-agrees-to-acquire-postmates-for-2-65-billion/

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