Apple has reportedly acquired PullString, an artificial intelligence (AI) startup for at least $30 million. According to Axios, the iPad and iPhone maker snapped up PullString likely due to the startup's specialization in AI and the voice, technologies used in Internet of Things (IoT) devices and smart home assistants, such as Apple's Siri, Google Assistant, and Microsoft's Cortana. Founded in 2011, PullString -- formerly ToyTalk -- is based in San Francisco. The startup previously raised $44.8 million through four funding rounds including investors such as CRV, True Ventures, and Greylock Partners. PullString is the brainchild of former Pixar executives Renee Adams and Oren Jacob.
Nightfall is using machine learning and natural language processing to help organizations discover and protect their most sensitive information with the startup's cloud-native data loss protection platform. The San Francisco-based startup launched out of stealth mode in November with $20.3 million in funding led by Bain Capital Ventures and Venrock, with participation from Atlassian CTO Sri Viswanath and New York Jets offensive tackle Kelvin Beachum, among other investors. The startup's platform supports integrations with Slack to protect sensitive data shared in chat and with GitHub to protect sensitive keys and credentials in code.
Estimated at $113 million in 2015, the chatbot market is expected to reach $994.5 million by 2024. Since Facebook launched the bots on Messenger, the market has not ceased to develop by creating a real craze around the Virtual Robots. With the Democratization of AI Technologies, Chatbots are becoming a true pillar of Customer Relationship Management, driving adoption among enterprises. In France, 35 Chatbots Startups has been detected by myFrenchStartup, the data-driven platform of the French Startup Ecosystem: 22 Startups are targeting the professional services market while 13 startups are leading the consumers services market. With 33% of these Startups created in 2016 and 75% based in Paris, the French Chatbot market is only in its embryonic stage.
Artificial intelligence is nothing new. Researchers have been trying to solve the puzzle of creating human-like intelligence in machines for decades. But it's only in recent years that they've started to make real progress towards realizing this incredible goal. Just in the last few years we've seen the emergence of chat bots, self- driving cars, smart appliances, and smarter search engines. They all rely heavily on artificial intelligence.
SAN FRANCISCO – September 8, 2016 – TechCode, a global network of startup incubators and entrepreneur ecosystems, today announces its new accelerator program called the Global AI Accelerator. This new accelerator program is now accepting applications and is open to startups across all industry verticals who are utilizing artificial intelligence in their technology, such as voice recognition, machine learning, natural language processing and more. Applications for the accelerator program are due no later than October 10, 2016. "This program is unlike any other, as it not only has a niche focus on artificial intelligence, but is also the first global accelerator program, which means startups can participate from a number of different locations all over the world," said Luke Tang, General Manager of TechCode's U.S. Accelerator program. "Our global presence puts us in a unique position to offer this type of accelerator and help startups in the fields of robotics, virtual and augmented reality, smart home, IoT, medical devices, wearables and more, to build international relationships."