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And we’re back! Well, just me for now anyway. Haje is covering CES, so if you are there, seek him out and say “Hi!” Thanks so much to Henry for conducting the Daily Crunch train last week. It was a joy to read it and hope you enjoyed it, too. It looks like we are back at it with a long list of news, so let’s get started. — Christine
The TechCrunch Top 3
- It’s hard to pull the wool over Reddit users’ eyes: If you have an out-of-warranty Apple iPhone, iPad or MacBook, you might want to join Reddit. Users spotted, and quickly circulated, a change in the repair pages for those devices that stated battery replacement service charges would increase by up to $50 for these devices, Ivan reports.
- Sit, Bonk, sit…good dog: Newly launched dog coin Bonk is being credited as having contributed to a spike in Solana’s price. The cryptocurrency’s prices had been volatile lately, Jacquelyn writes, following the whole FTX debacle.
- TikTok forms its own “Adults Only” room: An ability to restrict TikTok livestreams to adult viewers is now something the social media giant is making available to creators for short-form videos, Aisha reports.
Startups and VC
Can co-CEOs work? If you’re a company with two founders looking for that advice, Becca and Darrell have a good Found podcast for you. This time they were joined by Brex co-founder and co-CEO Henrique Dubugras, who talked about not only the company’s corporate credit card and expense management startup, but also about what made him and his co-founder, Pedro Franceschi, decide to be co-CEOs.
And we have three more for you:
- If 2022 were a headline…: Natasha M, Mary Ann and Alex solicited answers to that question and compiled a list of how you described the tech industry’s 2022.
- Sharing economy, but for hospital rooms: HD is a Southeast Asia startup betting that matching demand with supply can also apply to vacant hospital rooms. Rita has more on how the company is doing this.
- BharatPe CEO is out: Manish reports that BharatPe CEO Suhail Sameer plans to leave the India-based fintech at the end of the week. Though CFO Nalin Negi will jump into the role as interim CEO, the company is already on shaky ground: BharatPe sent its founder packing last year after it was discovered he was allegedly misusing company funds.
How to make the most of your startup’s big fundraising moment
No matter the size, early-stage investments are a sign of validation for any startup.
However, “when you see other companies raising hundreds of millions of dollars, it can be easy to think no one will be interested in hearing about your startup’s much smaller round,” writes Hum Capital CMO Scott Brown.
In this marketing playbook for early-stage startups, Brown explains how founders can use fundraising announcements to maximize media interest, comply with SEC guidelines and align more closely with investors to “get the most bang for their buck.”
One more from the TC+ team:
- Greener pastures: Could climate be a safe investment right now? It seems so. Tim spoke to Union Square Ventures about its new $200 million fund and shares what USV plans to do in 2023.
TechCrunch+ is our membership program that helps founders and startup teams get ahead of the pack. You can sign up here. Use code “DC” for a 15% discount on an annual subscription!
Big Tech Inc.
If you were hoping for some Nvidia news today, boy, have we got you covered. Romain, Rebecca and Brian listened in on a CES virtual press conference so you didn’t have to. Some highlights include a lot of Nvidia’s tools going into cars: Mercedes will use Nvidia’s digital twin tech to modernize its factories, Foxconn’s EVs will be built with Nvidia’s self-driving toolkit, and Hyundai, BYD and Polestar are among carmakers that will use the company for its in-car gaming features. Meanwhile, Nvidia’s robot simulator adds human coworkers and Nvidia upgrades GeForce Now with RTX 4080 performance for premium users.
And we have five more for you:
- One for all and all for unionizing: Microsoft now has its first official union in the U.S., Amanda writes. At ZeniMax, a gaming studio it owns, 300 quality assurance testers voted to unionize, something she notes is becoming a trend in the gaming industry.
- Hackers came knocking: The LockBit ransomware gang is claiming responsibility for a ransomware attack on the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles, Carly reports. HACLA provides affordable housing for over 19,000 people in the city.
- Show pony: Ingrid writes about Intel’s new high-end 13th-gen 24-core processors and its new CES strategy. For all of your CES news, stay tuned to TechCrunch’s dedicated CES event page throughout the conference, ending January 8.
- To infinity and beyond: Aria has your look at the space industry trends for 2023. Spoiler, this year will be bigger than 2022.
- Tesla ran out of gas while delivering vehicles in Q4: Rebecca writes about Tesla delivering 405,278 vehicles in the fourth quarter, which came in at nearly 5% below Wall Street expectations.