Twitter exposes secrets and techniques, FTC clamps down on overview hijackers and Android 14 arrives

Good day, mates. Searching for a recap of this week’s information? You’re in the correct place. It’s Week in Assessment (WiR), the (kind of) common publication that recaps the highest tales from the previous few days written by the proficient TC group. (Woot, alliteration.) There’s no faster strategy to compensate for the stuff that issues. After all, we’re just a little biased.

Earlier than we get on with the great things, a reminder that TechCrunch Early Stage 2023 is sort of upon us — happening April 20 in Boston. I’ll chorus from rehashing my pitch in previous columns too a lot, however belief me once 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 knowledgeable panels masking the various points of startup constructing.

Elsewhere in occasions land, don’t neglect that Disrupt, TechCrunch’s annual flagship convention, kicks off September 19. We’re significantly excited concerning the AI Stage, which is new this yr. Tickets can be found right here.

With that out of the best way, on to the information:

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Non-public no extra: This week, quite a few Twitter customers reported a bug by which Circle tweets — that are supposed to succeed in a choose group, like an Instagram Shut Pals story — had been surfacing on the algorithmically generated For You timeline. That meant that some folks’s supposedly non-public posts had been breaching containment to succeed in an unintended viewers, which shortly sparked some uncomfortable conditions, Amanda reviews.

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 compelled to. To recap, Twitter took Musk to trial final yr to pressure him to honor his signed obligation to accumulate the corporate for the agreed-upon value 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 value he initially set.

Twitter develop into X: In much more Twitter information (it’s quite a bit, I do know), Twitter, Inc., is now known as X Corp., in line with a court filing in California. Amanda writes that Elon Musk, who bought Twitter for $44 billion final yr, has aspired to construct what he calls “X, the everything app.” This proposed app may seem like China’s WeChat, which helps messaging, funds, ride-sharing, meals supply and different providers multi functional place.

Hijacked evaluations: The U.S. Federal Commerce Fee (FTC) approved a remaining consent order in its first-ever enforcement motion over a case involving “overview hijacking,” or when a marketer steals shopper evaluations 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 prospects on Amazon.

If it’s free, it’s for me: Google TV, Google’s good TV working system that powers Chromecast units and varied TVs, this week acquired a big replace geared toward increasing entry to free, streaming content material. Google TV now integrates entry to free streaming channels like Tubi, Plex and Haystack Information immediately in its redesigned Reside tab, alongside the prevailing lineup of channels from free streamer Pluto TV.

New telephone, who dis?: In an effort to increase its attain, Stockholm-based Truecaller is introducing an replace that’ll present stay caller ID help on iOS, accessible to folks utilizing its paid tiers. Jagmeet writes that the brand new function comes as Truecaller continues to see plenty of progress, but additionally some knocks in its strongest markets, comparable to India.

Clay is the brand new plastic: Disposable plastic and paper cups are an environmental messGaeaStar, a startup based mostly in Berlin and San Francisco, thinks it could actually do higher with simply clay, water, salt and sand, Harri reviews. 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 growth cycle runs on a relatively predictable cadence lately. To wit, this week, after two developer previews, the corporate launched the primary of 4 deliberate public beta releases of Android 14, Frederic reviews. As with earlier variations, the primary beta can 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 Fairness, the crew dove into offers of the week, regulation and on-the-ground dynamics at play within the AI house and the chance that funds might 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 reasonably priced.


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

SaaS metrics that entice traders: Oleksandr Yaroshenko, the top 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 imply for traders: The Environmental Safety Company is proposing new rules that might take impact in 2027 and pave the best way for a brand new car market dominated by EVs. Tim writes about how funding alternatives abound as the principles push EVs to the forefront.

Robotic revolution: Brian spoke with over a dozen VCs concerning 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 shiny way forward for exponential progress forward.