Brave uses an initial coin offering to secure $35 million for ad-free browser

brave browser secures 35 million in funding through initial coin offering notebook
The browser wars continue unabated, with Google’s Chrome dominating the desktop, Mozilla Firefox maintaining a strong second place, and Microsoft Internet Explorer declining toward oblivion. Battling it out for relevancy are Microsoft’s new Edge browser and Apple’s Safari, with the Opera browser falling into the “Other” category.

That’s not stopping others from jumping into the fray, no matter how long the odds might appear. As a case in point, Mozilla’s former CEO and Javascript creator Brendan Eich is working to launch yet another browser, Brave, and he secured $35 million in new funding to help out with the effort.

As TechCrunch reports, it is not just the amount of funding itself that is interesting, however,  it is also the method Eich used to raise the money. Specifically, he embarked on an initial coin offering (ICO), meaning a fundraiser that operated by selling cryptocurrency. In Brave’s case, that meant creating its own version of coin, the Basic Attention Token (BAT) and then selling a billion units.

Taken together, the billion BAT are worth more than $35 million and there is another 500 million BAT squirreled away for growth and “BAT development.” The company does not have any plans current to sell any additional BAT.

Eich hopes to use the funding to help make internet advertising more attractive to advertisers, publishers, and users, by using blockchain technology to make the process more efficient. The end result will be a browser that is aimed at blocking most ads while nevertheless allowing publishers to make money from advertising. Essentially, the Brave browser lets users choose to block ads completely, allow privacy-respecting ads to get through, and enable ads that contribute directly to a site.

The benefit will be a browser that is significantly faster and also safer by eliminating “malvertising,” or harmful advertising, while nevertheless being better at allowing publishers to make money and stay in business. While Brave will face an uphill battle in the browser market, the injection of $35 million through its recent ICO along with the promise of combatting the scourge of disruptive web ads should certainly help it take on the industry’s current leaders.

Business

Chinese court upholds Qualcomm's complaint that Apple infringed on two patents

Apple is following the FTC's lead and has sued Qualcomm for a massive $1 billion in the U.S., $145 million in China, and also in the U.K., claiming the company charged onerous royalties for its patented tech.
Outdoors

Built to take a beating and still perform, these are the best hiking watches

A proper hiking watch should track exercise metrics and act as a navigational co-pilot during any kind of hike. Ideally, it'll even have a built-in GPS system and sensors. Here are five of the best hiking watches.
Computing

Does Qualcomm's latest laptop processor hold up against Intel's Core i5?

Qualcomm has been nipping at Intel's mobile CPU heels for years and now it might finally have overtaken it. To find out whether it's new SoC can hold its own in mid-range computing, we pitted the Snapdragon 8cx vs. Core i5.
Computing

You’ll soon be able to scribble all over PDFs on your Chromebook

Chrome OS users may soon be able to doodle all over their PDF documents with the possible addition of a new feature in Chrome OS' PDF viewer. The annotation feature is expected to allow users to hand draw or write over their documents.
Virtual Reality

Oculus Rift vs. HTC Vive: Prices drop, but our favorite stays the same

The Oculus Rift and HTC Vive are the two big names in the virtual reality arena, but most people can only afford one. Our comparison tells you which is best when you pit the Oculus Rift vs. HTC Vive.
Computing

Microsoft’s Windows 95 throwback was just an ugly sweater giveaway

Microsoft's "softwear" announcement wasn't what we had hoped for. Thursday's announcement was not the new line of wearable tech or SkiFree monster sweater we wished for. But it did deliver the 90s nostalgia we wanted.
Computing

Canada’s winters inspired a startup to warm homes with cryptomining heat waste

Cryptomining may be the key to untold riches and the future of currency, but it’s also an environmental nightmare. Heatmine, thinks it has the answer, but it could mean bolting a mining rig onto every home and business in the country.
Home Theater

Confused about LED vs. LCD TVs? Here's everything you need to know

Our LED vs. LCD TV buying guide explains why these two common types of displays are fundamentally connected, how they differ, what to look for in buying an LED TV, and what's on the horizon for TVs.
Deals

The best MacBook deals for December 2018

If you’re in the market for a new Apple laptop, let us make your work a little easier: We hunted down the best up-to-date MacBook deals available online right now from various retailers.
Computing

How to connect AirPods to your MacBook

If you have new AirPods, you may be looking forward to pairing them with your MacBook. Our guide will show you exactly how to connect AirPods to MacBook, what to do if they are already paired with a device, and more.
Computing

Hitting ‘Check for updates’ in Windows 10 opts you into beta releases

Users who are careful about keeping their system updated should watch out -- Microsoft revealed this week that clicking the Check for updates button in Windows can opt you in to testing beta code.
Product Review

The Asus ZenBook 14 is a tiny notebook that gets lost in the crowd

The ZenBook 14 aims to be the smallest 14-inch notebook around, and it succeeds thanks to some tiny bezels. Performance and battery life are good, but the notebook lacks a standout feature other than size.
Computing

Secure your Excel documents with a password by following these quick steps

Excel documents are used by people and businesses all over the world. Given how often they contain sensitive information, it makes sense to keep them from the wrong eyes. Thankfully, it's easy to secure them with a password.
Computing

Which Macs are compatible with MacOS Mojave?

Is your computer ready for Apple's big Mojave update? Here's what you need to know about MacOS Mojave compatibility, what Macs can successful download Mojave, and the requirements you need to know about.