Used to be, coins were for parking meters and gumballs. Now, they’re minting millionaires: according to Live Coin Watch, as of 6pm PST last night, the digital coin market currently had a total market cap of around $653B.
And this past week has been particularly exciting. Here are a few of our favorite “tales from the crypto”…
Bitcoin Cash launches on Coinbase, controversy ensues
Coinbase (one of the largest crypto exchanges) launched support for Bitcoin Cash (a cryptocurrency that split from Bitcoin back in August) yesterday.
Coinbase halted and cancelled orders, disabled sales, and enacted a mass, forced logout. Trading has since resumed, and Coinbase co-founder Brian Armstrong is currently investigating the matter.
Litecoin founder dumps his entire stake
Charlie Lee, the founder of Litecoin (the world’s 5th largest crypto, with a market cap of $17.7B), sold off all his coins after the currency surged 7.5k% last week.
On Reddit, Lee claimed his motive was to avoid a “conflict of interest” moving forward.
It hasn’t been revealed how many coins he held -- but the coin only dipped around 4% following his post, easing crypto conspiracy theorists’ fears that the market could crash when a crypto “whale” sells.
The Winklevoss twins are now Bitcoin billionaires
In 2004, the 6’5” twins sued Facebook for stealing their concept to create the platform and received a $65m settlement in company stock.
That ballooned into $300m as the social media company grew -- and, starting in 2013, they dumped almost all of it into Bitcoin.
Today, it’s paid off: according to the NYT, the WVTs have a combined net worth of around $2B, which they’ve used to launch their own crypto exchange, Gemini.
How ‘bout Chuck E. Cheese tokens?
The wait is over just beginning: Magic Leap finally reveals its flagship product
7 years of hype and nearly $2B later, startup Magic Leap finally has a consumer product: the Magic Leap One “mixed-reality goggles.”
The ML1 is a 3-part system: comprised of a headset, small external computer, and a wireless controller that lets you interact with realistic virtual 3D objects around you -- sooo, pretty much VR?
Kinda, but the virtual world is wayyyy more realistic.
Not only does the headset use elements of augmented reality, but it also tracks your movement and the room around you -- so when you walk towards a created object, you can see more detail in it, just like real life.
And the ML1 holds these “creations” to the same rules of physics as humans. That means a virtual person can’t walk through a wall, and if you “put” a virtual object on your desk, then turn the set off, it’ll still be there when you turn it back on.
ML1’s biggest drawback is its field of vision, which is “about the size of a VHS tape held in front of you with your arms half extended” -- not exactly “fully immersive,” but who’s complaining?
“When can I have it?”
Magic Leap promises this first version will ship in 2018. As for the price tag, Magic Leap’s CEO Rony Abovitz says they aren’t ready to release a number.
But he also refers to ML1 as a “premium artisanal computer.” So we’re guessing it’ll be pretty d*mn expensive.
You vape bro? If you do, there’s a pretty good chance you’ve heard of the San Francisco-based vape powerhouse, Juul Labs.
As of yesterday, an SEC filing showed they just raised a $112m round of funding, and that number could potentially steez its way up to a $150m convertible note offering.
This is interesting for a couple of reasons
Since hitting the streets in 2015, Juul’s new sleek rectangular devices have surpassed other vape rigs manufactured by the big tobacco giants.
According to Nielsen data, Juul now controls 32.9% of the vape market, above British American Tobacco at 27.4% and Altria at 15.2%. And, in the past year alone, the vape star grew revenue 700% to hit $224.6m.
*Pause for post-numbers brain breather*
Vaping is still a hot-button topic
Once marketed as the safer alternative to smoking, recent studies have shown that vaping could be more harmful than people once thought: potentially promoting gum disease and lung cancer.
Meanwhile, Juul has sparked a vaping epidemic in high schools (“to Juul” is now a verb synonymous with smoking amongst teens), as kids can easily sneak the devices into school for a little pre-class Juuling in the bathroom.
Unmanned brick-and-mortars: the new corporate rat race
There’s a new gimmick in town, and it’s looking to bring back the floundering brick-and-mortar with the same companies who disrupted it in the first place.
All by way of the “unmanned convenience store” -- a retail space devoid of human employees.
China’s leading the pack
Amazon announced the concept of an unmanned convenience store little over a year ago and has since opened up a trial location in Seattle called AmazonGo -- though Go, and competing tech from Walmart, has been plagued by some major technology hiccups.
But in China, the concept is moving at a quicker pace.
Alibaba (China’s largest retailer) already has its own hypermarket development -- and just yesterday, their competitor, JD.com, announced they’ve graduated from unmanned trial shops and plan to open hundreds of stores in the near future.
OK, but… how’s it work?
The idea is for customers to walk into a store, shop, and pay for the items via mobile app without ever waiting in line. And according to reports, JD has tech that is flat out better than everyone else’s.
Using facial and image recog-tech on the store ceilings, JD.com’s AI brick-and-mortars track customer movement and product selection, allowing them to personalize consumer shopping preferences over time.
JD.com is so far ahead of the autonomous grocery store game, they’re already planning a licensing strategy to third-party retailers, which would only add to their already HUGE legless leg up in the race.
The Community Spotlight is where we give a bad*ss Hustle reader the chance to share their story and give us their elevator pitch on, well, themselves. Wanna see your face here? Refer at least 5 people using your unique link and send us your best elevator pitch with this survey.
Farmers need seeds to grow crops. They store these seeds in giant seed boxes. But traditionally, to spread these seeds around their fields, they have to climb on top of wagons and open the boxes by hand from precarious, and potentially life-endangering positions.
Seed Slide opens these seed boxes remotely, saving time and lives.
In just 3 years, we’ve grown from a concept, to selling Seed Slide in 12 states, while prioritizing the mission we were created out of; your safety.
What got you where you are today?
90 second pitch contests. I've won 3 national competitions (one featuring Daymond John from Shark Tank), and the funding has really helped to scale our business.
What’s something your coworkers don’t know about you?
I caught all 151 Pokemon on the original Game Boy game, AKA I'm a certified Pokemon Master.
OK, cut to the chase -- give us your elevator pitch:
Seed Slide can save farmers from needless deaths and injuries -- and I think that’s a cause worth championing.
Saving lives and building slides. You heard it here first people, pitches make riches. Check out Josh’s product here, and woo us via this form to be featured in our next Community Spotlight. Remember, there will be a ton of submissions so we will only be able to consider readers who have referred 5 or more friends.
things you should...
DONATE TO: Toys for Tots Native American Program
Founded back in 1980, this program collects toys and books and distributes them to disadvantaged children on Native American reservations. Today, it serves 120k kids annually.
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We’re powerless against the call of a good side-hustle -- c’mon, it’s our namesake.
So, predictably, when we catch wind of an opportunity, we share it with you.
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Download the app, link a card, earn cash
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