13 TechCrunch Stories You Don’t Want To Miss This Week

This week at TechCrunch we’re gearing up for Disrupt SF, but the news cycle does not rest. iOS 9 launched for iPhones and iPads as the watch OS 2 release was delayed due to a bug. Content blockers took center stage as they topped app stores, Snapchat introduced a feature that had users barfing rainbows, and CrunchBase launched a detail-rich Unicorn Leaderboard.


1. After months in beta, iOS 9 hit iPhones and iPads. Greg Kumparak wrote about 15 hidden features that are tucked away in iOS 9 such as low power mode, search in settings and detailed battery usage. Romain Dillet reviewed iOS 9, calling it a powerful iPad experience with many refinements that make iOS flow better.

2. Ahmed Mohamed, a 14-year-old Texas student, caught media attention (as well as the attention of President Obama, who invited him to the White House) when he was arrested for bringing a homemade clock to school. Officials thought the clock looked like a bomb, and took the freshman maker into custody. Ahmed said he was interrogated at school by police, and days later, switched schools.


3. Apple has long been vocal on its stance on privacy and security. Matthew Panzarino wrote about how the company recently began utilizing that stance as a sales tool, and how the company will continue to address privacy with the introduction of Live Photos and the ‘Hey Siri’ feature.

4. A day after iOS 9 launched, ad blockers topped the app storeAnthony Ha got more specific about why people hate ads so much, and what the future will look like for publishers if blockers become more ubiquitous. Sarah Perez also went hands on with 3 iOS 9 content blockers.

5. If you opened Snapchat at all this week, you undoubtedly saw a few of your friends barfing rainbows. Snapchat acquired facial recognition startup Looksery to power its new Lenses feature. The company also announced it will start charging $0.99 for 3 replays.

Snapchat Lenses

6. Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook is building a new button, but it wont be a ‘Dislike’ button. It will probably be more along the lines of an empathy button. Josh Constine breaks down how it might work. Based on new evidence, it might be some sort of emoji reaction.

7. Apple delayed the release of watch OS 2 due to a bug. Guest contributor Danielle Levitas wrote about how watch OS 2 could be a game changer in the future of apps.

8. In a press release, SpaceX updated just how much money it has booked in contracts: $7 billion. For context, that’s almost as much as the $8.2 billion Uber has raised.

9. Romain Dillet took a closer look a closer look at 3D Touch for the iPhone, writing that the new software implementation is by far the most important improvement in the new iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus.

10. Twitter’s custom emojis made their debut in a new hashtag ad campaign with Coca-Cola. Coke has gotten its own hashtag #ShareACoke, and the campaign then extended across Niche and Vine. Drew spoke with Ross Hoffman, senior director of global brand strategy at Twitter about the possibilities for what we’re calling the “Cashmoji.”

11. Guest contributor Ritika Trikha wrote about productivity and the fear of modern programming, emphasizing that it’s all about the ability to see the solution before diving into the problem.

12. Uber released a case study defending surge pricing. “We found that, without surge pricing, Uber is not really Uber — you can’t push a button and get a ride in minutes,” wrote Uber researchers in a blog post.

13. Apple is frequently bashed for not being first to the punch with an idea. Natasha Lomas wrote that pointing out that Apple is a copy-cat is easy, but it also misses the wider point, which is all about design.