Twitter exposes secrets and techniques, FTC clamps down on evaluation hijackers and Android 14 arrives
Howdy, pals. On the lookout for a recap of this week’s information? You’re in the suitable place. It’s Week in Review (WiR), the (kind of) common e-newsletter that recaps the highest tales from the previous few days written by the proficient TC staff. (Woot, alliteration.) There’s no faster technique to atone for the stuff that issues. After all, we’re a bit biased.
Earlier than we get on with the great things, a reminder that TechCrunch Early Stage 2023 is sort of upon us — going down April 20 in Boston. I’ll chorus from rehashing my pitch in previous columns too a lot, however belief me after I say you’ll wish to be there. Not solely will you be handled to a wholesome chunk of the TC editorial crew out and about — a rarity! — however you’ll even have entry to skilled panels protecting the numerous facets of startup constructing.
Elsewhere in occasions land, don’t overlook that Disrupt, TechCrunch’s annual flagship convention, kicks off September 19. We’re notably excited in regards to the AI Stage, which is new this 12 months. Tickets can be found here.
With that out of the way in which, on to the information:
Private no more: This week, quite a few Twitter customers reported a bug by which Circle tweets — that are supposed to achieve a choose group, like an Instagram Close Friends story — have been surfacing on the algorithmically generated For You timeline. That meant that some folks’s supposedly non-public posts have been breaching containment to achieve an unintended viewers, which shortly sparked some uncomfortable conditions, Amanda experiences.
They made me do it: In a latest interview with BBC reporter James Clayton on Twitter Areas, Twitter CEO Elon Musk admitted what many had suspected: He purchased Twitter as a result of he thought he’d be pressured to. To recap, Twitter took Musk to trial final 12 months to drive him to honor his signed obligation to amass the corporate for the agreed-upon worth of $44 billion, or $54.20 per share. After some authorized back-and-forth, Musk — staring down the barrel of a prolonged courtroom battle — agreed to purchase the corporate on the worth he initially set.
Twitter become X: In much more Twitter information (it’s loads, I do know), Twitter, Inc., is now referred to as X Corp., in keeping with a court filing in California. Amanda writes that Elon Musk, who purchased Twitter for $44 billion final 12 months, has aspired to construct what he calls “X, the everything app.” This proposed app might look like China’s WeChat, which helps messaging, funds, ride-sharing, meals supply and different companies multi functional place.
Hijacked reviews: The U.S. Federal Commerce Fee (FTC) approved a ultimate consent order in its first-ever enforcement motion over a case involving “evaluation hijacking,” or when a marketer steals shopper opinions of one other product to spice up the gross sales of its personal. Sarah writes that, on this case, the FTC ordered dietary supplements retailer The Bountiful Firm, the maker of Nature’s Bounty nutritional vitamins and different manufacturers, to pay $600,000 for deceiving and deceptive clients on Amazon.
If it’s free, it’s for me: Google TV, Google’s good TV working system that powers Chromecast gadgets and varied TVs, this week obtained a big replace aimed toward increasing entry to free, streaming content material. Google TV now integrates entry to free streaming channels like Tubi, Plex and Haystack Information straight in its redesigned Stay tab, alongside the present lineup of channels from free streamer Pluto TV.
New phone, who dis?: In an effort to increase its attain, Stockholm-based Truecaller is introducing an replace that’ll present dwell caller ID help on iOS, obtainable to folks utilizing its paid tiers. Jagmeet writes that the brand new characteristic comes as Truecaller continues to see a whole lot of progress, but additionally some knocks in its strongest markets, corresponding to India.
Clay is the new plastic: Disposable plastic and paper cups are an environmental mess. GaeaStar, a startup primarily based in Berlin and San Francisco, thinks it will probably do higher with simply clay, water, salt and sand, Harri experiences. To make the disposable containers, the startup says that it developed a particular 3D-printer that churns them out in “30 seconds or much less” — fairly the declare.
New Android on the block: Google’s Android improvement cycle runs on a fairly predictable cadence nowadays. To wit, this week, after two developer previews, the corporate launched the primary of 4 deliberate public beta releases of Android 14, Frederic experiences. As with earlier variations, the primary beta can also be the primary launch that anybody can set up over the air, assuming they’ve a supported Pixel system, going again to the Pixel 4a 5G (however not the Pixel 4).
TechCrunch’s roster of podcasts hasn’t gotten any much less spectacular, in case you haven’t given any of it a hear. Over on Equity, the crew dove into offers of the week, regulation and on-the-ground dynamics at play within the AI area and the chance that funds could afford enterprise corporations. And on this week’s Found, Lauren Markler got here talked about how her firm, Cofertility, goals to rebrand egg donation by making the method much less transactional — and far more inexpensive.
TC+ subscribers get entry to in-depth commentary, evaluation and surveys — which you recognize if you happen to’re already a subscriber. In the event you’re not, consider signing up. Listed here are a couple of highlights from this week:
SaaS metrics that attract investors: Oleksandr Yaroshenko, the pinnacle of technique and investments at Headway, writes about what engagement metrics acquire probably the most vital curiosity from traders, together with engagement over lengthy intervals on the finish of a subscription and the frequency of interactions with core app options.
What tailpipe regs mean for investors: The Environmental Safety Company is proposing new rules that may take impact in 2027 and pave the way in which for a brand new car market dominated by EVs. Tim writes about how funding alternatives abound as the principles push EVs to the forefront.
Robot revolution: Brian spoke with over a dozen VCs in regards to the state of robotics investing in 2023. As he notes, regardless of the latest downtrend, robotics stays vibrant and thrilling, and it unquestionably has a vibrant way forward for exponential progress forward.
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