Good day once more! Greg right here once more with Week in Assessment. WiR is the e-newsletter the place we take probably the most learn TechCrunch tales from the final seven days and wrap them up in as few phrases as potential — no fluff, no nonsense,* only a fast blast of every part you most likely need to find out about in tech this week.
*Perhaps slightly little bit of nonsense.
Need it in your inbox each Saturday morning? Join right here.
Tip your Amazon driver (on Amazon’s dime): In the event you’ve obtained an Alexa machine at residence, Amazon pays your supply driver an additional $5 in case you say, “Alexa, thank my driver” after a supply. Amazon may, in fact, simply pay drivers extra to start with…however that, depressingly, most likely wouldn’t be a transfer that may get Amazon one of the vital learn headlines of the week.
Slack’s CEO to depart: Final week Salesforce CEO Bret Taylor stepped down; this week, Stewart Butterfield, CEO of (Salesforce-owned) Slack, introduced he’ll additionally step down come January. Ron Miller shares his insights on inbound Slack CEO Lidiane Jones and her a long time of product expertise.
The “Twitter Information”: “Elon Musk reminded his followers on Friday that proudly owning Twitter now means he controls each side of the corporate — together with what its workers mentioned behind closed doorways earlier than he took over,” writes Taylor as an array of once-private inner Twitter communications is made public.
Lensa AI goes viral: Do all your social media buddies all of the sudden have avatars that make them appear like sci-fi gods and motion heroes? It’s most likely due to Lensa AI, a photograph enhancing app that went viral this week after including help for Secure Diffusion’s AI-generated artwork instruments. Reputation didn’t come with out controversy, although — many proceed to debate the ethics of promoting one thing generated by an AI educated on the works of actual folks; in the meantime, others famous that the AI may very well be “tricked” into producing in any other case disallowed NSFW imagery.
Extra tech layoffs: This week Airtable laid off about 20% of its employees — over 250 folks. Plaid additionally laid off 20%, which for them works out to 260 folks. African fintech unicorn Chipper Money let go of fifty folks, and the U.Okay. drag-and-drop e-commerce platform Primer let go of 85 (about one-third of the corporate).
Google combines Maps/Waze groups: When Google purchased the navigation app Waze for over $1 billion again in 2013, Google mentioned they’d maintain the Waze and Google Maps groups separate “for now.” Seems “for now” meant about 9.5 years, however Google confirmed this week that the 2 groups shall be merged. Google says it expects Waze to stay a stand-alone service.
Twitter Blue may cost a little extra on iOS: Twitter’s $8 “Blue” subscription plan (which comes with a blue “verified” checkmark) continues to be on pause for now after a few false begins, however when it returns, it’ll reportedly value a couple of dollars extra in case you subscribe by way of the iOS app with a purpose to offset Apple’s reduce.
Discovered — our podcast about founders and the businesses they construct — has a brand new co-host! Becca Szkutak stepped into the position this week, becoming a member of Darrell Etherington in a chat with Daye CEO Valentina Milanova. In the meantime, the Fairness crew tried to make sense of 2022 in a year-end look again, and Taylor Hatmaker hopped on The TechCrunch Podcast to discover what the sudden explosion of AI-generated artwork means for precise human artists.
Right here’s what subscribers had been studying most on TechCrunch+:
Traders sound the alarm about potential non-public fairness tech offers: “Who needs to promote when costs are low?” Ron Miller and Alex Willhelm ask.
Rootine’s $10M pitch deck: “In the event you informed me that an organization that’s charging $70 monthly for multivitamins would be capable to elevate a $10 million spherical, I’d demand to see the receipts,” writes Haje. With that in thoughts, he dives deep into the pitch deck that helped make it occur.