Machine Learning is
in our DNA.

Our Story

Our stories are as diverse as the world’s. And delivering quality stories to the world is our business.

The engineering problem:

How do you deliver the world’s most important information to the people who need it automatically, in real-time? How do you determine what makes a quality story or what people want to read? This is a problem both on a planetary and individual scale, and requires many different disciplines to solve.


Key stats:

  • 10M+ articles analyzed, categorized and evaluated per day
  • Billions of channel interactions and article pageviews generated per month
  • 50% DAU/MAU (users love our newsfeeds more than mobile games)
  • 30M+ downloads
  • 300+ US publisher partners
  • $90M in funding from GREE, Atomico, Globis Partners, Mixi, Development Bank of Japan

Open Positions in our San Francisco Office:

We are looking for creative engineers and product managers with the following specialities:

+News Operations – Part-time


A part-time role working with the SmartNews content operations team providing weekend and holiday coverage. Focus on performing quality assurance operations for content in the SmartNews app. Individual will also help with programming strategy, analyzing metrics and spotting trends.

This is a “work-from-home” paid position on a 1099 contractor basis (hourly rate TBD). We are looking for minimum six-month commitment, for a candidate based in the Bay Area.


  • Regular monitoring of push notifications and content in the app during weekends and holidays (noon – 6pm).
  • Perform categorization using admin tools in day-to-day operations.
  • Provide feedback to help troubleshoot and refine existing topic channels.
  • Monitor baseline metrics and escalate issues if necessary.


    Noon – 6pm Pacific Time on Saturday, Sunday, and scheduled Holidays.

Tasks News Operations

    Monitor scheduled push notifications for quality.


    Develop and perform schedule of quality-assurance checks to monitor for quality of content – text, video and social content in the SmartNews app.


  • Background in digital media — editorial and marketing both applicable. Must have sufficient editorial judgment to identify appropriate stories across multiple categories.
  • Experience working in a newsroom, preferably with headline-writing experiece.
  • Strong knowledge of and interest in mobile apps for news and entertainment.
  • Basic understanding of various technical components of publishing on the web.
  • Desire to learn more about algorithmic news and inner workings of news apps.
+Mobile Product Marketing Manager

Job Description

At SmartNews, our mission is simple: to help busy professionals connect in a heartbeat with news stories that truly matter. With over 25M downloads and 250+ US partners including CNN, Vice News, TechCrunch, Vox, Politico, Fox News, BBC, Reuters and many other world-class media organizations, we want SmartNews to be the best antidote to fake news.

SmartNews San Francisco is seeking a Product Marketing talent with deep knowledge of the mobile ecosystem and great branding expertise to help us achieve our ambitious goals.

The Growth Marketing Team was formed in April 2017 at SmartNews San Francisco and our charter is to drive scale across mobile platforms & marketing channels and grow the SmartNews brand in the US and beyond (UK, India…).

Come help us figure out how to accelerate our growth even further!

What you will be doing:

  • Position our flagship mobile app in the US market and emerging test markets (UK, India…). Define how we will position future new features or app launches for the US market.
  • Help us highlight the key customer segments for our product by leveraging in-house tools, Facebook Audience Insights and other key mobile market data products (Nielsen, Comscore, App Annie…).
  • Brief our creative resources, in-house or external, to keep our brand relevant for those target customer segments.
  • Lead our US and global app store optimization operations [ASO] to impact positively our conversion rate (for our initial traction, read this post), drive a larger volume of organic installs and track & define relevant key metrics.
  • Iterate on our current ASO stack of tools (Mobile Action, Apptweak, App Annie) and processes.
  • Define and lead new channels tests ranging from influencer marketing, podcasts or co-marketing with leading media brands.

What we’re looking for:

  • MBA or BA in Economics, Business, or other quantitative field, with at least one previous mobile marketing experience.
  • 2+ years experience in mobile product marketing, including direct ASO experience.
  • Experience with ASO tools including: SensorTower, App Annie, Mobile Action, Apptweak and app store testing tools like Google Experiments, StoreMaven or SplitMetrics.
  • Understanding of performance-based mobile marketing core concepts including CTR, CVR, CPI and LTV.
  • Familiar with ad attribution platforms like Adjust, Kochava or Appsflyer.
  • Analytical, data-driven, results-oriented, self-starter.
  • Advanced usage of Excel including data analysis, vlookups and pivot tables.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
+Software Engineer, Machine Learning


  • Write server-side production code for applications that are robust and high-volume
  • Research and solve various technical problems, including information extraction from unstructured text, categorization, and de-duplication
  • Build ranking algorithms for news articles
  • Develop internal analytics tools
  • Rapid prototyping

Minimum Qualifications

  • Over 5 years of solid work experience in natural language processing, classification, search, and/or recommender systems
  • Expert coding abilities in multiple programming languages (e.g. Java, C++, Python, Scala)
  • MS or BS in computer science, mathematics, physics or other quantitative fields

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience with distributed analytic processing technologies (e.g. Hadoop, Hive, MapReduce, Spark, Solr/Elasticsearch)
  • Experience with cloud based architecture (e.g. Amazon Web Services)
  • A Strong Plus: Experience with distributed analytic processing technologies (e.g. Hadoop, Hive, MapReduce, Apache Spark, Solr/Elasticsearch)
  • Strong interest in news media and our mission
+Software Engineer, Service Backend


  • Design and implement core backend systems
  • Analyze and improve stability, efficiency, and scalability of various systems

Minimum Qualifications

  • Over 5 years of experience in backend development
  • Coding experience in Java, Kotlin, or Scala
  • Experience operating and maintaining a JVM-based application
  • Experience developing on top of a web framework (e.g. Spring Boot, Ruby on Rails, etc.)
  • Working knowledge of HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience with AWS
  • Experience developing and operating a high-traffic web service
  • Good understanding of JVM internals
  • Strong interest in news media and our mission

Company Info

  • Founded: June 2012
  • Summary: SmartNews is the news discovery app designed to deliver the top trending stories that matter most using machine-learning
  • Mission: Delivering the world’s quality information to the people who need it
  • Number of Employees: 100+ in Japan and U.S.
  • Users: 30 million downloads
  • Investors: Atomico, GREE, Mixi, Social Starts, Globis Capital Partners, Development Bank of Japan
  • Funding: Series D, $90M raised to date

The Problem

  • News can change the world – but not if it isn’t read. Out of tens of millions of articles and tweets, how can we pick the top ten that matter the most, right now? How can we make it easier and more engaging for everyday people to get to the stories they really want to read? How can we create a sustainable model for publishers? How can we avoid the filter bubble of personalization and widen people’s interests and knowledge of the world?
  • As Spotify did for music and Hulu did for TV, SmartNews is creating an entirely new model for the news industry. Our Google-sized mission is to evaluate (in real-time) what makes a quality story and deliver the stories that matter to people who need it.

The Solution

  • SmartNews is powered by machine learning algorithms that evaluate more than 10 million articles and social signals a day to deliver only the most interesting and important stories. SmartNews intelligently categorizes these stories into business, technology, lifestyle, entertainment, sports, and world tabs. A built-in channel store allows users to add official news channels from top publications including USA Today, TIME, VICE, Fast Company, and many others.
  • The free app pre-loads and caches news stories, allowing you to read in places with spotty internet connection or no internet connection at all (such as remote locations, trains, and airplanes) – it is simply the fastest news app available.
  • SmartNews has strong partnerships in place with news content providers and publishers with a very unique model that allows publishers to keep 100% of article traffic and ad revenue.
  • These relationships, coupled with an elegant design and user experience, a high degree of customizability, and an app that requires no internet connection, puts SmartNews at the top of the news category – with an incredibly high mobile engagement rate that rivals Twitter and Facebook.

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