Mon. Jul 22nd, 2024

Hey, people, welcome to Week in Assessment (WiR), TechCrunch’s common publication that recaps the week in tech. Hope the summer season’s treating y’all nicely — it’s a balmy 90 levels right here in NYC! — and that some much-needed R&R is on the agenda.

Talking of “agenda,” mark your calendars for Disrupt, TC’s annual convention, kicking off in September. Whether or not you’re a startup rookie studying the ropes or a founder hell-bent on altering the world, Disrupt will ship the instruments, data and connections that will help you make it occur. You don’t need to miss it.

Elsewhere, keep tuned for Metropolis Highlight on June 7 (Wednesday), which can spotlight Atlanta, Georgia, this go-round. Atlanta has emerged as one of many buzziest new hubs within the nation, with booming cybersecurity and software-as-a-service sectors in addition to a slew of traders trying to again the recent new startups coming from the metro. Among the many audio system at Metropolis Highlight will likely be mayor Andre Dickens — we’re trying ahead to listening to his perspective.

Now with the PSAs out of the best way, right here’s your WiR!

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Constancy sours on Reddit: This week, Constancy, the lead investor in Reddit’s most up-to-date funding spherical in 2021, slashed the estimated price of its fairness stake within the social media platform by 41% because the funding. The devaluation, a part of a broader development that has hit quite a lot of growth-stage startups throughout the globe prior to now 12 months, raises uncertainties about whether or not Reddit will preserve its preliminary intent to reportedly go public at a valuation round $15 billion.

Amazon Prime Knowledge: Amazon is contemplating providing low-cost or probably free nationwide cell phone service to Prime subscribers in the USA, in keeping with a brand new report from Bloomberg. The tech big is reportedly in talks with Verizon, T-Cell, Dish Community and AT&T.

Gig staff receives a commission: Uber, Lyft, DoorDash and different app-based ride-hail and supply firms should reimburse California gig staff doubtlessly thousands and thousands of {dollars} for unpaid car bills between 2022 and 2023. The again funds come from a provision in Proposition 22, the controversial legislation that classifies gig staff as unbiased contractors relatively than staff and guarantees them half-hearted protections and advantages.

Volkswagen’s ace within the gap: Volkswagen is betting massive on the upcoming ID.Buzz electrical van. With availability of the car nonetheless a 12 months out, the automaker is relying on years of pent-up anticipation to not solely promote the bus shrouded in nostalgia, however to even have it act as a halo product to convey clients to the model’s total EV lineup.

Shopify launches Store Money: Shopify’s Store app is introducing a brand new rewards program known as Store Money, the e-commerce platform introduced on Friday. The brand new program is funded by Shopify and earns buyers 1% again on purchases made utilizing its Store Pay on-line checkout service.

Stripe will get into credit score: Stripe needs to make it simpler for companies to entry credit score. The personal monetary infrastructure big introduced a brand new cost card program in the present day from Stripe Issuing, its industrial card issuing product. Denise Ho, head of product at Stripe, gave TechCrunch the unique particulars — go learn the piece by Mary Ann.

AI conquers Minecraft: AI researchers have constructed a Minecraft bot that may discover and broaden its capabilities within the recreation’s open world — however not like different bots, this one mainly wrote its personal code via trial and error and a number of GPT-4 queries. Known as Voyager, this experimental system is an instance of an “embodied agent,” an AI that may transfer and act freely and purposefully in a simulated or actual atmosphere.

YouTube Shorts, in minutes: Dumme, a startup placing AI to sensible use in video modifying, is already producing demand earlier than opening to the general public. The Y Combinator–backed firm has a whole lot of video creators testing its product, which leverages AI to create short-form movies from YouTube content material, and it has a waitlist of over 20,000 pre-launch, it says.


Want a brand new podcast to get your weekend began proper? Excellent news — TC has you coated (after which some). On Fairness, the crew took a have a look at the most recent from Net Roulette, Stripe’s acquisition of Okay, what Klarna’s Q1 means for the fintech market and QED and a16z’s early-stage methods. Discovered spoke with Dr. Stacy Blain, the co-founder and chief science officer at Concarlo Therapeutics, concerning the firm’s novel therapeutic options for drug-resistant most cancers. Over at Chain Response, Gary Vaynerchuk, the chairman of VaynerX and the CEO of VaynerMedia and NFT assortment VeeFriends, spoke on his experiences within the artistic media trade. And the TechCrunch Reside people dove into how AI doomerism is overblown — and why the blowhards doing the blowing need it that method.


TC+ subscribers get entry to in-depth commentary, evaluation and surveys — which you recognize should you’re already a subscriber. If you happen to’re not, think about signing up. Listed below are just a few highlights from this week:

Competitors considerations within the age of AI: AI is quickly altering how companies sense, motive and adapt out there. However these groundbreaking capabilities are creating an upheaval in how firms interact with opponents and shoppers. Henry Hauser is counsel in Perkins Coie’s antitrust and litigation follow teams. He muses on this in an informative piece.

Salesforce turns into an information firm: May the information exhaust being generated by the Salesforce household of merchandise change into extra precious than the merchandise themselves — no less than by way of new income provides? This piece explores the likelihood.

Why don’t extra scientists change into founders?: Why is it so frequent to see outsiders bringing analysis out of the lab and never the scientists themselves? It’s a fancy subject to unravel, however Rebecca does it deftly.

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