Daily Crunch: SpaceX’s crewed spacecraft successfully launches and docks

SpaceX made history this weekend, tech executives respond to the ongoing protests against racism and Zynga announces a big acquisition.

Here’s your Daily Crunch for June 1, 2020.

1. SpaceX’s first crewed spacecraft successfully docks with the International Space Station

SpaceX’s Crew Dragon “Endeavor” successfully docked with the International Space Station as planned on Sunday morning, marking another key milestone during this historic Commercial Crew demonstration mission it’s conducting with NASA. On-board were NASA astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken, the first people ever to make the trip to orbit aboard a spacecraft built by a private company.

Crossing this milestone means that essentially the first half of the mission has been completed successfully. So far, SpaceX has demonstrated that the launch process works as designed, as does manual control (the astronauts took over and ran two tests of that system) and automated docking.

2. Tech companies respond to George Floyd’s death, ensuing protests and systemic racism

Tech companies and CEOs have begun to weigh in on what amounts to a rather delicate topic for corporations not accustomed to rocking the boat on these manner of social issues. For example, Apple’s Tim Cook wrote, “This is a moment when many people may want nothing more than a return to normalcy, or to a status quo that is only comfortable if we avert our gaze from injustice. As difficult as it may be to admit, that desire is itself a sign of privilege.”

3. Zynga acquires Turkey’s Peak Games for $1.8B, after buying its card games studio for $100M in 2017

By making this deal, Zynga is picking up two very popular titles/franchises that it doesn’t have do develop from scratch — Peak Games’ Toon Blast and Toy Blast together total more than 12 million DAUs.

4. Global smartphone sales plummeted 20% in Q1 thanks to COVID-19

Gartner’s latest report puts the global market at a 20.2% slide versus the same time last year, thanks in large part to fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. Every single one of the global top-five manufacturers saw large declines for the quarter, save for Xiaomi, which saw a slight uptick of 1.4%.

5. 6 VCs share their bets on the future of work

As loneliness mounts with shelter-in-place orders implemented in various forms across the world, investors are looking for products and services that foster true connection among a distributed workforce, as well as a distributed society. (Extra Crunch membership required.)

6. Bonusly, the platform for employee recognition, raises $9 million Series A

Bonusly launched in 2013 when co-founder and CEO Raphael Crawford-Marks saw the opportunity to reinvent the way employers and colleagues recognize and reward their employees/coworkers.

7. This week’s TechCrunch podcasts

The latest full-length episode of Equity discusses the future of work and whether tech talent is moving to smaller cities, while Monday’s news roundup discusses how startups and the VC world are responding to police brutality and systemic racism. And on Original Content, we review the new Netflix romantic comedy “The Lovebirds.”

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