5 things you need to know in Australian tech today

No, it’s not this type of hoverboard being recalled. Picture: Universal Pictures

Hello, this is what you need to know in tech today.

1. Hipages has acquired StartLocal. The Australian online marketplace for tradespeople announced this morning the acquisition for an undisclosed sum. StartLocal is one of the largest online directories in Australia for verified businesses and will add 600,000 monthly visitors to Hipages.

2. This is the untold story of Spreets, who Yahoo bought for $40 million. Dean McEvoy, one of the startups co-founders went through a lot to finally get Spreets off the ground. This included going from flat broke in the US to finding a lifeline back in Australia. Spreets itself from the inception of the idea to going live took just 32 days, and 12 months after that it had over 1 million members and was sold to Yahoo. It’s an awesome story, give it a full read here.

3. AMP has bought MoneyBrilliant. Yet another acquisition, with the global wealth management giant taking control of the Sydney-based fintech startup. The sum is undisclosed, but MoneyBrilliant’s CEO, Jemma Enright, will leave the company and replaced by Peter Lalor, who helped build SMSF administration startup SuperIQ.

Founded in 2011, MoneyBrilliant was originally named Cha-Ching, and is a platform that allows users to make better financial decisions by helping them to completely understand how they are placed financially. It’s essentially a virtual finance assistance.

4. There’s been another hoverboard recall. Another day, another recall because hoverboards basically keep blowing up. This particular one is the OhMama Swegway, which should be recalled for its ridiculous name alone. Campbell Simpson at Gizmodo said that, “cheaply constructed and illegitimately imported hoverboards were not safe. Poorly built chargers and poorly built batteries are a recipe for disaster, and the ACCC is right to crack down on their sale.”

5. The NBN has been trialling full-fibre. A leaked document has shown that the NBN has been testing a rollout for a cheaper fibre-to-the-premises technology, despite the Coalition slamming FTTP for being too expensive and unnecessary. The network trialled is called MT-LFN (multi-technology local fibre network) and was tested in two Victorian sites between mid 2014 to the end of last year. The trials found that by using thinner cables, it addressed the expensive construction costs associated with duct blockages by traditional thicker cables. The tests showed it would have the costs compared to the older style cables.

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