Gartner reports first ever global decline in smartphone sales

Global smartphone sales have not been firing on all cylinders for several years now but Gartner’s latest figures record the first ever decline since the analyst began tracking the market all the way back in 2004.( Though it’s not the first analyst to call a deterioration .)

Gartner’s figures peg sales of smartphones to end users in Q4 2017 at virtually 408 million divisions — a 5.6 per cent deterioration over its Q4 2016 figure.

It tells No. 1 ranked smartphone maker Samsung insured a year-on-year unit deterioration of 3.6 per cent in Q4, while sales of Apple’s iPhones fell 5 per cent in the holiday quarter, though it says Cupertino stabilized its second-place marketshare.

Gartner says two main factors led to the Q4 sales fell: A slowing of upgrades from feature phones to smartphones due to a lack of quality “ultra-low-cost” smartphones; and existing smartphone owneds selecting quality models and keeping them for longer, lengthening the replacement cycle.

Apple’s performance in Q4 was also impacted by the later availability of its new top-of-the-range iPhone X, which drove slower upgrades of its other two new smartphones, the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus. While component shortfalls and manufacturing capacity constraints also contributed to a long delivery cycle for the iPhone X.

Gartner tells it’s expecting a delayed sales boost for Apple in the first quarter of 2018 , now that the flagship’s delivery cycle has returned to normal.

It’s also expecting a boost for Samsung in Q1 as it unpacks its successor Galaxy flagships.

For full year 2017, Samsung carved out a 20.9 per cent marketshare to Apple’s 14.0 per cent.

Far East

Last month analyst Canalys reported a first annual decline in smartphone shipments in China — which for years took up the baton on smartphone growth from saturated Western marketplaces. But even Chinese purchasers appear to be getting tapped out.

It’s still a growth narrative for Chinese OEMs, though. And Gartner tells the combined market share of Chinese vendors in the top five increased by 4.2 percentage points in 2017, while the market share of the top two, Samsung and Apple, remained unchanged.

China’s Huawei and Xiaomi were the only smartphone vendors to actively increase their the shares in Q4, according to Gartner, with year-on-year unit growth in the holiday one-quarter of seven. 6 and 79 per cent, respectively.

The analyst credits Huawei’s uplift to broadening the appeal of its portfolio with new handset launchings in the one-quarter. It also says Xiaomi’s “competitive” portfolio accelerating its growth in the emerging APAC market and helped it win back lost share in China.

Huawei remained in third place in the global smartphone vendor rankings, taking a 9.8 per cent share in full year 2017 and shrinking the gap with Apple and Samsung.

Overall, Gartner says total smartphone marketings exceeded 1.5 billion divisions in 2017 — a year-on-year strengthening of 2.7 per cent.

On the OS front, Google’s Android platform extended its lead in 2017, taking an 86 per cent share of the total market, up 1.1 percentage points from a year ago. While iOS took 14 per cent.( The “other OS” category shriveled to a nearly non-existent 0.1 per cent .)

And as the world’s biggest mobile tradeshow, MWC, rolls around again, there will be some fresh Android-powered handsets being unboxed in the coming days — including from Samsung, Nokia-branded HMD and others.

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Sweatcoin lets you earn crypto for working out

Want a route to workout and earn some coin? Sweatcoin has risen to the top of the App Store for helping folks get something more than only a light for taking those daily steps.

The startup says it has accumulated more than 5 million users in the past year and increased revenue by 266 percent in the last one-quarter. There are more than 2 million weekly active users on the app, and growing, inducing it one of the fastest-growing fitness apps in the App Store and second to the top in the free apps, next only to the Google Arts& Culture app that blew up over the weekend.

It works like this: users sign up and then hook up their smartphone’s health and fitness data and GPS location to the app. The app then tracks how many steps you take in a day and rewards you a monetary “sweat” value according to your movements. For every 1,000 steps recorded, the app will pay out. 95 in “sweatcoins.” Users can later trade these coins in for fitness gear, workout classes, gift cards and a number of other offerings.

The app says you can only earn these coins by walking outside so it theoretically doesn’t count if you are walking on a treadmill at the gym, though the app on my phone seems to counting steps inside my apartment, as well. That’s at least something.

Note: I’m in my third trimester of pregnancy so I’m not exactly going the distance( just strolling up the stairs is like I’m trying to climb Mount Everest some days ). That attains it a bit hard to earn my coins — I’ve only earned. 33 in sweatcoins today, for instance, so don’t feel badly if you aren’t hitting that 10,000 step stride.

Another reason you may reached a wall of motive in the app is that the free version restrictions you in how many coins you can earn a day to only five. However, you can earn more if you’re willing to fork over some of those sweatcoins per month to get you in the upper tiers and attain some real sweaty moolah toward that coveted Fitbit or whatever fitness gear you’ve got your eye on.

The startup has now created its own coin to the tune of $5.7 million in seed from Goodwater Capital, which led the round, Greylock, which participated through its Discovery Fund, Rubylight, Seedcamp and SmartHub, as well as a number of angels, including Justin Kan and Rain Lohmus.

Sweatcoin founders say they plan to use the funding to expand outside of the U.S. and U.K. markets to other English-speaking countries, then on to continental Europe and Asia.

Co-founder Anton Derlyatka also told TechCrunch he’d like to “even include the ability to pay taxes with sweatcoin” in the future. Other co-founder Oleg Fomenko also mentioned plans to develop an “open-source blockchain DLT technology that will allow Sweatcoin to be traded like any other major crypto- or fiat currency.”

“We are out to fundamentally change the value ascribed to health and fitness and offer the motivation for people to lead better lives, ” Fomenko said.

Those interested in checking out the app can download it on either iOS or on Google Play and start earning their sweat equity today.

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Android devices seen covertly sending location data to Google

An investigation by Quartz has revealed that Android devices send cell tower location data to Google even if the user has incapacitated locating services for apps in their device settings.

Quartz also said it observed location data being sent even if devices had been reset to factory default settings. Android devices with a cellular data or a wi-fi connect were ensure to send the data to Google each time they came within range of a new cell tower — including devices with no SIM cards installed( these offloaded the location data via wi-fi, where available ).

It says there is currently no way for Android users to prevent their locating data regarding being sent to ad targeting giant Google — short of removing SIMs from their devices and disabling wi-fi( or else leaving the devices inside a faraday enclosure ).

After creating its findings with Google, Quartz reports that a company spokesperson told it the cell tower location data harvesting has been going on for the past 11 months, and that cell tower addresses be listed in info sent to the system it uses to manage push notifications and messages on Android devices.

The spokesperson further claimed the location data was never employed or stored. And Google added that it intends to end the practice by the end of November, having had the location tracking issue flagged to it by Quartz.

“In January of this year, we began looking into using Cell ID codes as an additional signal to improve the speed and performance of message delivery, ” the Google spokesperson said. “However, we never incorporated Cell ID into our network sync system, so that data was immediately disposed, and we updated it to no longer request Cell ID.”

Whatever the reason Google was experimenting with harvesting Android users’ locating info, it’s another troubling instance of the company slurping up sensitive user data without constructing people explicitly aware it’s doing so — let alone devoting users controls to opt out of another major invasion of their privacy.

Back in October, for example, a number of Google Home Mini devices were depicted to have malfunctioned and been persistently recording audio in the background in their owners’ homes, instead of merely waking up when a specific trigger word was used.

After that snafu gained press attention, Google said it would remove the touch top function on the device — blaming that hardware for a malfunction that had triggered near continuous recording of users’ domestic goings on. As it’s now blaming engineering experimentation for Android covertly harvesting locating data.

Location data is highly sensitive personal data from which much can be inferred about a person’s life and lifestyle, especially given the rule for mobile devices is to accompany the user wherever they run. And while cell tower locating data isn’t necessarily hugely precise, triangulation of multiple cell towers can be used to calculate a more exact location.

So even if message speed and performance could be enhanced by the Android OS knowing a user’s cell tower place, Google should at least be asking people to opt in to that location-tracking improvement and/ or providing them with a style to opt out.

Google’s privacy policy does include the following section on “location information”( below) which states that users of “Google services” may have their locating data collected, including cell tower data — though the linked examples Google uses refer to specific Google apps, like Google Maps, rather than to the Android OS itself; while the linked instance on wi-fi access phases and cell towers talks merely in terms of place data being collected for users who have enabled Google’s Location Services( not persistently, because you are using the Android OS ):

When you use Google services, we may collect and process information about your actual location. We use various technologies to ascertain place, including IP address, GPS, and other sensors that may, for example, offer Google with informed on nearby devices, Wi-Fi access points and cell towers.

According to Quartz’s findings, the location tracking did not seem limited to particular Android telephones or tablets. It says Google was apparently collecting cell tower data from all modern Android devices.

It further quotes information sources very well known the issues specifying that the cell tower address were being sent to Google after an early 2017 change to the Firebase Cloud Messaging service that’s owned by Google and runs on Android phones by default.

While this is notable as an instance of Google itself, Android’s platform controller, apparently caught covertly tracking users’ place via the OS, this time last year a range of budget Android smartphones sold in the US were found to be secretly sending personal data to a third party company are stationed in China — including information about users’ locations.

Albeit in that case the culprit was commercial firmware pre-installed on the devices, rather than the Android OS itself, as here.

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Pay with Google goes live, allowing mobile users to pay with any card on file, not just those in Android Pay

Google announced today it’s launching a new style to pay on mobile devices, using any card you have on file- including those saved to your Google Account via products like Google Play, YouTube, Chrome, or Android Pay. This “pay with Google” option ties all these saved pay options together in a single interface, which app manufacturers and retailers can then implement employing only a few lines of code.

The technology making this possible, the Google Payment API, was first announced this May at Google’s I/ O developer conference.

The larger idea here is to construct checkout speedier for mobile users and increase conversions for retailers, by allowing Google users to tap into any payment card a client has on file with Google, rather than those they’ve specifically saved to Android Pay. The feature will also make it easier for customers to shop use Google Assistant, the company noted earlier this year.

“Payments is a key capability of the user’s Google account, ” Pali Bhat, Vice President of Payments at Google, told TechCrunch. “Our goal is to enable users to pay with their Google account across devices, platforms and interfaces.”

When you opt to check out using “pay with Google, ” you’ll be presented with a list of payment cards saved in your Google account. To continue, you only tap the card you want to use, and Google sends the information collected along with your shipping address to the merchant, who then manages the rest of the transaction.

In addition, Google partnered with over 40 pay providers to build integrations simpler for merchants who want to offer “pay with Google.”

The payment providers- including PayPal’s Braintree, Stripe, Vantiv, Worldpay, Adyen, and Groupe Paysafe- will continue to process the transactions as before. Other partners are being added soon, including ACI, Assist, Ebanx, First Data, Global Payments, GMO, IMSolutions, and TapPay.

Because the option necessitates merchants to use the Google Payment API, the “pay with Google” option is not yet available everywhere. But Google has lined up a long list of popular services that will offer the faster checkout to clients via their apps and mobile websites, when loaded in the Chrome browser.

At launch, this list of supported services includes Doordash, Eat2 4, Instacart, Kayak, Postmates, Wish, and others, but will expand to include others like Airbnb, Papa John’s, StubHub, Deliveroo, and many more in the near future.( See below ).

The API is also now available globally, bringing it to new markets like Brazil for the first time with partners like iFood and Magazine Luiza, for example.

For now, Pay with Google works within mobile apps and Chrome, but that could change in the future.

“We are starting with Chrome but plan to bring this experience to other browsers as well. Stay tuned, ” said Bhat.

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Google introduces Neural Networks API in developer preview of Android 8.1

Today, Google is starting to seed to devs a new developer beta (8. 1) of Android Oreo.

The big highlight here is the new Neural Networks API, which brings hardware-accelerated inference to the phone for quickly executing previously developed machine learning models. Bringing these calculations to the edge can bring a lot of utility to the end user by reducing latency and load on the network, while also maintaining more sensitive data on-device.

This can come in handy when it comes to allowing the apps on your phone to do things like classify images or learn from how your habits predict behavior. Google said they designed the Neural Networks API as a “foundational layer” for frameworks like TensorFlow Lite, Caffe2 and others.

If available, the API can make use of special AI chips on the device — or fall back to the CPU if that’s the only option. Google’s new Pixel 2 telephones feature such a special chip( the Pixel Visual Core) and Google previously said that it planned to turn it on once the 8.1 preview went live( so today …).

While the Neural Networks API focuses on putting more work on the user’s device, Google also is introducing some optimizations for Android Go in 8.1 that should help developers target users of the lightweight version of Android for more basic smartphones that Google announced at I/ O this past May.

Go is all about low-specced phones with bad connectivity. This update focuses on memory optimizations for devices running less than 1GB of RAM; they’ve also made it so that developers can target distribution of updates to devices on the basis of their system memory if they’re operating 8.1 or later.

Beyond this, the 8.1 developer preview will bring some updates to Autofill so its easier for password managers to use the framework. These updates all come in addition to the expected glitch patches and security patches.

Android 8.1 isn’t coming to consumers until December, but if you’re a developer you can jump on the beta now.

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Facebook denies eavesdropping on conversations to target ads, again

Social networks head of ads rejects rumours that Facebook app utilizes smartphone mics to listen in, serving ads against what it hears

Facebook has again denied eavesdropping on conversations to target adverts, following persistent supposition on the part of users who have received suspiciously timed promotional messages.

Rob Goldman, the head of advertising at the social network, issued the denial in response to a question from the host of tech podcast Reply All.” I run ads product at Facebook. We don’t- and have never- use your microphone for ads. Just absolutely no truth to the rumors ,” Goldman tweeted. He subsequently added that the denial holds true for Facebook’s other social network, Instagram, as well.

The allegation that Facebook secretly spies on users to better profile them for ad is long-running and hard to kill for the social network. The rumour appears to have started in May 2014 where the business launched specific features for its smartphone app called ” Identify Tv and Music”, which listens for ambient noise when a user is writing a status update.

If it hears a TV indicate or song that it recognises using the smartphone’s mic, it offers the user the option of automatically tagging that prove or song in their status update, shaving a few seconds off the time it takes to share the info. Less than a month after the feature was launched, the company had to issue a denial that it was ” always listening “.

But Facebook has also had to admit to occasionally running its smartphone app in the background when it shouldn’t be. In 2015, it fixed an issue that left it running a silent audio stream after the user had shut the app on an iPhone, means that the device’s battery life plummeted.” The app isn’t actually doing anything while awake in the background, but it does use more battery simply by being awake ,” Facebook’s Ari Grant said at the time.

Another fact that has bolstered mistrusts is that, since almost every Facebook user will have shot video or photos with it or Instagram at some point, or employed Messenger to carry out a video or audio dialogue, the app already has the permissions it would need to- hypothetically- carry out the eavesdropping.

The biggest gasoline for the fire, however, is the sheer number of uncanny coincidences that many users have experienced. In the reply to Reply All, people described adverts for cat food after discussing get a cat, for phone holders after expressing longing for them, and stating” so you popped the question !” minutes after a wedding proposal.

Facebook has never directly addressed the coincidences, but others have offered competing justifications, from effective targeting utilizing the rest of the company’s vast hoard of data, to sheer weight of numbers: with 1.7 billion users being served tens of adverts a day, there’s always going to be something uncanny.

‘Downright Orwellian ‘: journalists decry Facebook experiment’s impact on republic

Facebook translates’ good morning’ into’ attack them ‘, leading to arrest

Microsoft is bringing its Edge browser to Android and iOS

While Microsoft is still officially working on the mobile version of Windows 10, it’s no secret that the company has all but given up on building its own mobile ecosystem. That only leaves Microsoft with one alternative: concede defeat and bring its applications to the likes of Android and iOS. That’s exactly what the company has been doing for the last few years and today the company announced that its Edge browser( the successor to the much — and often rightly — maligned Internet Explorer) will shortly come to iOS and Android, too. The company is also graduating its Arrow Launcher for Android and renaming it to Microsoft Launcher.

Even though Microsoft basically doesn’t play in the mobile OS and hardware space anymore, it still needs to have a presence on rival platforms if it doesn’t wishes to risk losing its relevancy on the desktop, too. Edge and the Microsoft Launcher are both key to this strategy because they’ll help the company extend the Microsoft Graph even further. The Graph is Microsoft’s cross-platform system for to make it possible to sync the nation of your work and documents across devices and the company considers it as key to the future of Windows.

It’s no astound then that this new version of Edge promises to make it easier to connect your PC and mobile device, with easy syncing of your browser conferences and other features.

For now, though, Edge for iOS and Android remain previews that you can sign on for here. The Android version will be available as a beta in the Google Play store soon and the iOS version will be made available through Testflight in the near future, too.

It’s worth noting that Microsoft won’t bringing its own rendering engine to these platforms. Instead, it’ll rely on WebKit on iOS and the Blink engine on Android( and not the Android WebView control ). On Android, this means that Microsoft is now actually shipping its own version of the Blink engine inside its app — and that’s not something we expected to hear anytime soon.

As for the launcher, it’s worth noting that it’s actually a quite capable Android launcher that nicely integrates with all of the Google apps you probably use every day( calendar, Gmail, etc .). Microsoft’s version of the Google Feed, that left-most home screen on your Android device, is actually quite useful, too, and sets your calendar and other info front and center, whereas Google now use it for a general news feed.

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Escher Reality is building the backend for cross-platform mobile AR

The potential of mobile augmented reality is clear. Last summer Pokemon Go gave a glimpse of just how big this craze could be, as thousands of aroused humans converged on parks, bus stops and other locations around the world to chase virtual ogres through the lens of their smartphones.

Apple was also watching. And the summer months the company signaled its own conviction in the technology by announcing ARKit: a developer toolkit to support iOS developers to build augmented reality apps. CEO Tim Cook said iOS will become the worlds biggest augmented reality platform once iOS 11 hits consumers devices in fall underlining Cupertinos expectation that big things are coming down the mobile AR pipe.

Y Combinator-backed, MIT spin-out Escher Realitys notion in the social power of mobile AR predates both sets of trigger phases. Its constructing a cross-platform toolkit and custom backend for mobile AR developers, aiming to lower the barrier to entry to building compelling experiences, as the co-founders set it.

Keep in mind this was before Pokemon Go, says CEO Ross Finman, discussing how he and CTO Diana Hu founded the company approximately one year and a half ago, initially as a bit of a side project before going all in full hour last November. Everyone thought we were crazy at that time, and now this summer its the summer for mobile augmented reality ARKit has been the best thing ever for us.

But if Apple has ARKit, and you can bet Google will be coming out with an Android equivalent in the not-too-distant future, where exactly does Escher Reality come in?

Think of us more as the backend for augmented reality, says Finman. What we offer is the cross-platform, multiuser and persistent experiences so those are three things that Apple and ARKit doesnt do. So if you want to do any type of shared AR experience you need to connect the two different devices together so then thats what we offer Theres a lot of computer vision problems associated with that.

Think about their own problems of what ARKit doesnt offer you, adds Hu. If youve insured a lot of the present demos outside, theyre okay-ish, you can see 3D models there, but when you start thinking longer term what does it take to create obligating AR experiences? And part of that is a lot of the tooling and a lot of the SDK are not there to provide that functionality. Because as game developers or app developers they dont want to think about all that low level stuff and theres a lot of genuinely complex techs going on that we have built.

If you think about in the future, as AR becomes a bigger movement, as the next computing platform, it will need a backend to support a lot of the networking, it will need a lot of the tools that were building in order to build compelling AR experiences.

We will be offering Android support for now, but then we imagine Google will probably come out with something like that in the future, adds Finman, couching that part of the business as the free bit in freemium and one theyre hence more than happy to hand off to Google when the time comes.

The team has put together a demo to illustrate the kinds of mobile AR gaming experiences theyre aiming to support in which two people play the same mobile AR game, each employing their own device as a paddle

What youre looking at here is very low latency, custom computer vision network protocols enabling two players to share augmented reality at the same hour, as Hu explains it.

Sketching another scenario the tech could enable, Finman tells it could support a version of Pokemon Go in which friends could battle each other at the same hour and see their Pokemons opposed in real day. Or allow players to locate a Gym at a very specific location that stimulates sense in the real-world.

In essence, the teams bet is that mobile AR especially mobile AR gaming gets a whole lot more interesting with is supportive of richly interactive and multiplayer apps that the project works cross-platform and cross device. So theyre build tools and a backend to supporting developers wanting to build apps that can connect Android users and iPhone owners in the same augmented play space.

After all, Apple especially isnt incentivized to help support AR collaboration on Android. Which leaves room for a neutral third party to help bridge platform and hardware gaps and smooth AR play for every mobile gamer.

The core tech is basically knitting different SLAM maps and network connections together in an efficient way, tells Finman, i.e. without the latency that would make a game unplayable, so that it runs in real-time and is a consistent experience. So tuning everything up for mobile processors.

We go down to , not just even the network layer, but even to the general assembly level so that we can run some of the execution instructions very efficiently and some of the image processing on the GPU for telephones, tells Hu. So on a high level it is a SLAM system, but the exact method and how we engineered it is novel for efficient mobile devices.

Consider ARKit as step one, were steps two and three, adds Finman. You can do multi-user experiences, but then you can also do persistent experiences once you turn off the app, once “youre starting” it up again, all the objects that “youve left” will be in the same location.

Consider ARKit as step one, were steps two and three .

People can collaborate in AR experiences at the same hour, adds Hu. Thats one main thing that we can really offer, that Google or Apple wouldnt provide.

Hardware wise, their system supports premium smartphones from the last three years. Although, looking ahead, they say they see no reason why they wouldnt expand to supporting additional types of hardware such as headsets when/ if those start gaining traction too.

In mobile theres a billion devices out there that can run augmented reality right now , notes Finman. Apple has one part of the market, Android has a larger part. Thats where youre go to the most adoption by developers in the short term.

Escher Reality was founded approximately one year and a half ago, spun out of MIT and initially bootstrapped in Finmans dorm room first as a bit of a side project, before they went all in full time in November. The co-founders go back a decade or so as friends, and say they had often kicked around startup ideas and been interested in augmented reality.

Finman describes the business theyve objective up co-founding as actually just a nice combination of both of our backgrounds. For me I was working on my PhD at MIT in 3D perception its the same type of technology underneath, he tells TechCrunch.

Ive been in industry running a lot of different squads in computer vision and data science, adds Hu. So a lot of experience bringing research into production and house large scale data systems with low latency.

They now have five people working full time on the startup, and two part period. At this point the SDK is being used by a limited number of developers, with a wait-list for new sign ups. Theyre aiming to open up to all up-and-comers in fall.

Were targeting games studios to begin with, tells Finman. The technology can be used across many different industries but were going after gaming first because they are usually at the cutting edge of new technology and adoption, and then theres a whole bunch of really smart developers that are going after interesting new projects.

One of the reasons why augmented reality is considered so much bigger, the shared experiences in the real world really opens up a whole lot of new capabilities and interactions and experiences that are going to improve the current guess of augmented reality. But truly it opens up the door for so many different possibilities, he adds.

Discussing some of the compelling experiences the team see coming down the mobile AR pipe, he points to three regions he reckons the technology can especially support namely: instruction, visualization and entertainment.

When you have to look at a piece of paper and imagine whats in the real world for building anything, get direction, having distance professions, thats all going to need shared augmented reality experiences, he suggests.

Although, in the nearer word, customer entertainment( and specifically gaming) is the teams first bet for traction.

In the amusement space in the consumer side, youre go to short films so beyond just Snapchat, its kind of real time special effects, that you are able to video and set up your own various kinds of movie scene, he suggests.

Designing games in AR does also present developers with new conceptual and design challenges, of course, which in turn bring additional development challenges and the toolkit is being designed to help with those challenges.

If you think about augmented reality theres two new mechanics that you can work with; one is the position of the phone now matters , notes Finman. The second thing is the real world become content. So like the map data, the real world, can be integrated into the game. So this really is two mechanics that didnt exist in any other medium before.

From a developer standpoint, one added constraint with augmented reality is because it depends on the real world its difficult to debug so weve developed tools so that you can play back logs. So then you can actually run through videos that were in the real world and interact with it in a simulated environment.

Discussing some of the ideas and clever mechanics theyre seeing early developers playing with, he indicates color as one interesting area. Guessing about the real world as content is really fascinating, he tells. Think about color as a resource. So then you can mine color from the real world. So if you want more gold, put up more Post-It notes.

The business model for Escher Realitys SDK is usage based, entailing they will charge developers for usage on a sliding scale that reflects the success of their applications. Its also offered as a Unity plug-in so the specific objectives developers can easily integrate into current dev environments.

Its a very similar model to Unity, which encourages a very healthy indie developer ecosystem where theyre not charging any fund until you actually start making money, tells Hu. So developers can start working on it and during developing hour they dont get charged anything, even when they launch it, if they dont have that many users they dont get charged, its only when they start making money we also start making money so in that sense a lot of the incentives align pretty well.

The startup, which is graduating YC in the summer 2017 batch and now headed towards demo day, will be looking to raise funding so that they are able to amp up their bandwidth to subsistence more developers. Once theyve got additional outside investment procured the plan is to sign on and work with as many gaming studios as is practicable, tells Finman, as well as be head down on constructing the product.

The AR space is just exploding at the moment so we need to make sure we can move fast enough to keep up with it, he adds.

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