Microsoft Is Going Against Canva With The New Design Tool
Microsoft is expanding the functionalities of the Office suite by adding a free design tool aimed at consumers.
Microsoft Designer is an alternative to the popular tool Canva. Canva is a simple design tool with more than 100 million monthly active users. It was valued at $40 billion in 2021.
Canva’s “natural” competitor is Adobe with its Adobe Express solution. However, with Microsoft’s entry into the field, things may become more complicated.
Microsoft is tightly connected to Adobe with more than 30 product integrations. Microsoft spokesperson said that Adobe remains a key strategic partner for Microsoft and that the new Designer tool doesn’t change that.
It makes sense for Microsoft to add a simple design tool to their Office suite, especially now that Canva is going after Office solutions with a new PowerPoint alternative and editable documents.
Satya Nadella, Microsoft’s CEO, said:
“No company is better positioned than Microsoft to help organizations deliver on their digital imperative so that they can do more with less.”
Microsoft is in an advantageous position because anyone who subscribes to Office automatically gets Designer at no additional cost.
Designer is automatically integrated with DALL-E 2 and enables AI image creation based on text inputs. Could this be one of its competitive advantages?
Home designers are in a great position since they have many high-quality options to choose from.
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A Swedish Startup Is Producing Limitless Energy
Solar energy is on the rise. It accounted for more than half of all renewable energy produced globally in 2021.
Exeger is a Swedish startup founded in 2009. The vision of the company has always been to use solar energy and use it for consumer electronics. With this, they could essentially create limitless energy by charging batteries with solar energy.
Today, Exeger employs more than 200 people. The main Exeger product is called Powerfoyle. Powerfoyle can be integrated into existing devices and turn light into energy needed to run the devices.
Giovanni Fili, the founder and CEO said.
“We started out with a nanotech invention, we made it into a component, and then we made a new solar cell from it.”
“We realized after a few years that this had a huge potential because we can screen print this solar cell, which allows a free-form design with different shapes, colors, and textures. This, in turn, allows us to integrate Powerfoyle in existing products that are sold in billion units per year — giving them eternal battery life basically.”
The company uses printers to create Powerfoyle strips, which can be used on various devices, regardless of the shape.
The innovation is currently integrated into six core products – three headphones, a communication headset, a bike helmet, and a self-powered dog harness.
The company raised over $180 million to date.
Former Google Product Lead Is Building An Automation Startup For Repetitive Tasks
Jacob Bank is the co-founder and CEO of Timeful, a smart scheduling app that got acquired by Google in 2015. After that, he worked as a product lead for Gmail, Calendar, Google Chat, and Google Workspace.
He recently launched a new startup called Relay.
Relay is a workforce automation app that combines the functionalities of Zapier and the accountability of Asana.
The solution is aimed at small to medium-sized companies.
“We’re targeting organizations that are between 30 and 500 [workers] in size, and most of our early design partners are tech companies,”
Relay raised $5 million in a seed funding round.
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You Can Now Train With An AI App That Tracks Your Movement
Insane AI is a fitness tech startup that just launched an AI-powered fitness training app.
The app uses Workout Tracking technology that transforms the phone’s front camera into a smart workout companion.
The technology enables motion tracking on any smartphone with a camera. This allows the app to identify how well users are performing each exercise. The app gathers information and provides tips to fix the posture in real-time.
Insane AI was officially launched in 2021 and received a $900,000 seed funding round.
The workout app will be available on the App Store and Google Play Store.
Jayesh Hannurkar, the co-founder of Insane AI, said.
“In the next 2-3 years, we aim to turn Insane into a first-of-its-kind fitness metaverse based around narratives, content and storylines.”
New $150 Million European VC Fund
Resonance is a new $150 million VC fund based in Paris. The fund is backed by Otium Capital.
Resonance will mostly work with European tech startups. The company will focus on Series A investments between $100,000 and $10 million.
The team behind the fund plans to be targeted with their investments instead of investing in various startups hoping to hit gold. They want to provide the required support to startups they decide to work with.
The fund can provide all the benefits of a single investor.
This is exciting news for European startups with another strong player in the investment field.
Czech Blockchain Startup Is Scaling Internationally
Tatum was founded in 2017 in the Czech Republic. It has since moved its headquarters to London and Miami.
The Tatum platform helps companies build their own blockchain apps instead of outsourcing the development to external developers. The platform provides infrastructure for over 40 blockchain protocols.
Tatum’s platform is used by various industries, from game and film studios to car and motorcycle manufacturers and crypto wallet operators. Tatum says it already has 90k customers.
The company just raised $41.5 million, which will be used to scale the product globally and gain more customers.
Jiri Kobelka, the CEO and co-founder, believes that the product is ready and that they want to scale up internationally.