Tech Tent: Apple, Lyft and feel-good tech

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I’ve got a proposition for you. Would you like to invest in my tech firm?

It’s never made a profit – oh, and there is the small matter of the $911m (£700m) it lost in 2018.

Come back….

Well, that sums up the fortunes of ride-share firm Lyft, a rival to Uber that isn’t yet in the UK.

And yet within minutes of its launch on the New York Stock Exchange (as Tech Tent went on-air) it had soared to a valuation of $30bn.

Annabelle Timsit, from the news website QZ, told me on the latest programme that investors “want to believe” that after a couple of years of investment Lyft will start to turn a profit – and early indications suggested that she was right as we watched the share price shoot up.

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We also looked at Apple’s big announcements earlier this week – not a gadget in sight but a number of new or enhanced services, including a credit card with some pretty competitive offerings.

Are people sick of paying subscriptions, and why has Apple rushed out its TV streaming announcement without the details in place of how much it will cost?

Finally, from grandparents discovering Facetime to new mums finding new friends, we ended the programme on a positive note – looking at tech that’s genuinely served a good purpose.

The BBC’s Jane Wakefield highlighted the mapping start-up what3words which enabled the rescue of a mother and daughter in a car crash in a rural part of the UK.

Annabelle Timsit nominated a wearable device from the University of Switzerland that will help doctors monitor children with health conditions who live in remote areas.

As for me… I’m off to work on my investment proposition.

Rory Cellan-Jones returns next week.