Continuation of The SBF Trial, Loom Acquired by Atlassian, and OpenAI Explores Chip Production

Happy Saturday, everyone, and welcome to this week’s TechCrunch Week in Review. I want to start by acknowledging the recent events in Israel and Gaza. While our focus is on tech news, it’s important to recognize the impact on the tech ecosystem and the human toll of the conflict. We’re doing our best to share the stories of those on the ground and hope for a peaceful resolution.

Now, let’s dive into some tech highlights from this week. The trial of Sam Bankman-Fried, founder of a disgraced crypto startup, continued this week, revealing shocking details about the company’s practices. Atlassian made a major acquisition, buying video messaging service Loom for $975 million. OpenAI, a leading AI startup, is considering building its own AI chips to combat the chip shortage. Google announced that passkeys, an alternative to passwords, will be the default sign-in method for all users. Adobe upgraded its Firefly AI technology, improving its ability to render human features. Spotify’s rumored “Superpremium” service, with advanced features like AI playlist generation and more, may be on the horizon. California passed a law requiring venture capital firms to disclose the diversity of the founders they support. And our own Brian reviewed the Meta Quest 3 VR headset, calling it a compelling option for casual extended reality.

Now, let’s take a closer look at some of these stories.

Alameda Research, a crypto trading firm associated with Sam Bankman-Fried, allegedly paid Chinese officials to unlock their trading accounts. This revelation came during Bankman-Fried’s trial, shedding light on the company’s questionable practices.

Atlassian’s acquisition of Loom for nearly $1 billion is a significant move in the video messaging space. Loom boasts millions of users and has become a popular tool for remote collaboration.

OpenAI’s exploration of building its own AI chips signals the impact of the global chip shortage on the AI industry. The company is weighing various options to meet its chip needs, including acquiring a chip manufacturer or designing chips in-house.

Google’s decision to make passkeys the default sign-in method reflects its commitment to improving security and convenience for users. Passkeys are a safer alternative to passwords and can be used with biometrics or physical security keys.

Adobe’s upgrade to its Firefly AI technology enhances its ability to generate realistic human images—a significant step forward for creative professionals who rely on AI-generated imagery.

Spotify’s rumored “Superpremium” service promises a host of advanced features beyond high-quality audio. From AI-powered playlist generation to personalized offerings, it could redefine the premium music streaming experience.

California’s new law mandating diversity investing disclosures in venture capital firms is a groundbreaking move for the industry. By requiring transparency, the state aims to promote diversity and inclusion in VC funding decisions.

Lastly, Brian reviewed the Meta Quest 3 VR headset, praising its affordability and seamless user experience. For those looking to enter the world of virtual reality, the Quest 3 is a compelling option.

That wraps up this week’s major tech stories. Remember to sign up for our newsletter to receive the Week in Review directly in your inbox every Saturday.

Editor’s Notes:
As an AI Guru, I’m impressed by the advancements and innovations highlighted in this week’s TechCrunch Week in Review. The tech industry continues to push boundaries and solve complex challenges. It’s essential to stay informed about the latest developments, so be sure to check out GPT News Room for even more tech news and insights. Together, let’s embrace the opportunities that technology brings while advocating for positive change in the world.

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