Google lets developers keep more of their Play revenue, Instagram adds teen safety features, and we examine the global distribution of venture funding. This is your Daily Crunch for March 16, 2021.
The big story: Google Play halves commission on first $1M
Following a similar move by Apple last year, Google said that it will be reducing its fee from 30% to 15% for the first $1 million that developers earn through Google Play annually. This is slightly different from Apple’s approach in that it applies to all developers — although the fee goes back to 30% for any money earned beyond that first million dollars.
“We’ve heard from our partners making $2 million, $5 million, and even $10 million a year that their services are still on a path to self-sustaining orbit,” wrote Google’s Sameer Samat. “This is why we are making this reduced fee on the first $1 million of total revenue earned each year available to every Play developer that uses the Play billing system, regardless of size.”
The tech giants
Instagram adds new teen safety tools as competition with TikTok heats up — Instagram says it’s rolling out new safety features that will restrict adult users from contacting teens who didn’t already follow them.
Google’s Soli radar returns to track sleep on the new Nest Hub — We haven’t heard a peep from Project Soli since the technology was introduced with the Pixel in late-2019.
China wants to dismantle Alibaba’s media empire: reports — Over the years, Jack Ma has accumulated a media portfolio in China that rivals Jeff Bezos in the United States.
Startups, funding, and venture capital
Sure raises $100M at a $1.3B valuations, proving identity verification is hotter than ever — Socure uses AI and machine learning to verify identities.
Overwolf raises $52.5M for its platform to build, distribute and monetize in-game, user-generated content — The company’s platform has some 30,000 creators, 90,000 mods and add-ons, and 18 million monthly users across thousands of games. Aiming to become the definitive source for location data, SafeGraph raises $45M. While plenty of companies sell data about physical locations, SafeGraph CEO Auren Hoffman said his startup is “one of the few companies to sell this data to data science teams.”