Brian Heater

Brian Heater

Hardware Editor

Brian Heater is the Hardware Editor at TechCrunch. He worked for a number of leading tech publications, including Engadget, PCMag, Laptop, and Tech Times, where he served as the Managing Editor. His writing has appeared in Spin, Wired, Playboy, Entertainment Weekly, The Onion, Boing Boing, Publishers Weekly, The Daily Beast and various other publications. He hosts the weekly Boing Boing interview podcast RiYL, has appeared as a regular NPR contributor and shares his Queens apartment with a rabbit named Lucy.

The Latest from Brian Heater

Oura/Best Buy partnership brings the smart ring to 850 stores across the US

It’s been a whirlwind few years for Oura. The hardware-maker rode the early days of the pandemic to the top of the wearable ranks, establishing itself as the top smart ring maker by a mile. With the

Headphone startup Nura gets acqui-hired by Denon parent, Masimo

Every so often, a new startup crosses your radar and reminds you how exciting hardware can be. It’s a relative rarity in consumer electronics, a category dominated by corporations like Samsung, Appl

Let’s work together

There are about four duck boats lined up directly across the street from this coffee shop. Boston has a knack for reminding you where you are, should you get bonked on the head and suddenly forget wha

Robust.AI raises $20M as it scales robot deliveries for pilot customers

When the company started, Robust.AI’s founders had no intention of making hardware. “Hardware’s hard,” co-founder and CTO Rodney Brooks tells TechCrunch, “and doing hardware at scale is

Google might announce a foldable Pixel next month

Consumer hardware isn’t always a foregone conclusion for I/O. In fact, after the last few pandemic events, nothing much feels like a foregone conclusion these days. After what felt like a universall

HomePods can now send a notification when your smoke alarm goes off

Apple’s surprise January resurrection of the original HomePod arrived with a handful of new software features. One of the more intriguing of the bunch was sound recognition for smoke and carbon mono

A 12% decline in global smartphone shipments is what passes for stability these days

At a certain point, the market will, indeed, stabilize. It has to. Demand for new smartphones has been consistently down for some time now, but the phones themselves are, obviously, here to stay. This

CMU taught a robot dog to walk a balance beam

Hardware gets its turn in the spotlight at Disrupt 2023

Let’s start with an obvious truth: Hardware is hard. We’ve all heard the cliché — and implicitly understand it to be truth. The good news is such difficulties give us a lot to talk about &#

Survey says!

Last fall, Alex and I discussed bringing back the TC+ robotics survey. I gave him the usual caveat: I’m into it, but it will have to wait until I can find the time. You know how these things go —

13 VCs talk about the state of robotics investing in 2023

We spoke to 13 of the top robotics VCs to discuss where the category is and what the future looks like.

Comixology vets return with their own publishing company

Comixology was genuinely a gamechanger. Before the platform came along, I knew very few people who had ever read a comic on a phone or tablet. There was entirely too much friction in the process to pr

All new Apple batteries will use 100% recycled cobalt by 2025

There’s a long list of things corporations can do to lessen consumer electronics’ environmental impact. Making systems easier to repair is up there, along with encouraging device recycling and upd

After a turbulent few years for home fitness, Tonal gets fresh funding and new CEO

The early days of the pandemic proved a massive boon for the home fitness crowd. Gyms closed indefinitely, and even when they began reopening, many members seriously questioned whether the model would

New York’s mayor wants you to know how much he loves police robots

Former cop and self-declared “geek” Eric Adams held a press conference in Times Square today to let the city know how much he loves police robots. New York City’s mayor presided over a press con

Carbon’s laser weeding robots score another $30M

If I’m an investor hoping to determine where robotics goes next after logistics, I’m looking at three key categories: construction, healthcare and agriculture. All are still in their relative infa

Global PC shipments dropped by a third in Q1

After a nice spike during the first two years of the pandemic, global PC shipments continued to drop for a fourth consecutive quarter. Analyst firm IDC’s latest figure has Q1 down 29% from the same

The robots are already here

In a blog post published last week, Meta asks, “Where are the robots?” The answer is simple. They’re here. You just need to know where to look. It’s a frustrating answer. I recognize that. Let

After losing sight of its initial pitch, Mojo Vision eyes pivot with $22.4M raise

News of Mojo Vision’s pivot rather poetically dropped during CES. After years of trying out the latest iteration of the company’s smart contact lens in various Las Vegas hotel suites, I found myse

Sepura Home raises $3.7 million to make your kitchen sink a composter

Here’s a clever new bit of kitchen tech. Victoria, BC firm Sepura recently introduced its eponymous home appliance, which sits under a sink in place of a garbage disposal. There’s an included Blue
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