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Startups Weekly is a recap of the latest happenings in the world of startups, featuring interesting stories and fundraises from the week. The most powerful startup program in the world, Y Combinator, was in the headlines recently when its head, Garry Tan, made some controversial tweets that were later deleted. Additionally, tech layoffs continued to happen this week, affecting even some of the TechCrunch colleagues. Despite the negative news, there were still some interesting stories and fundraises in the startup world.

Plex, the media streaming company, secured $40 million in funding, showing its determination to become a major player in the streaming market. Despite its numerous features and strategies, the company is still aiming for profitability. On the other hand, Apple’s response to regulatory compliance demands was met with criticism as it was seen as unwilling to make necessary changes while portraying itself as a victim. Another interesting development was Visible’s introduction of illness tracking, a unique and potentially controversial feature in the world of fitness and health tracking.

In terms of fundraises, Metronome secured $43 million in Series B funding with a focus on simplifying billing for AI companies. Rebellions, an AI chip company, raised $124 million in Series B funding. Chef Robotics also raised $15 million to promote the idea of food assembly by robots in commercial kitchens. Meanwhile, Aim Security raised $10 million for generative AI security.

The big trend of the week was layoffs, with tech giants like Microsoft and Alphabet laying off employees despite their profitable performances. Even startups faced challenges in securing venture capital, leaving them in financial uncertainty. Brex, a spend management startup, reduced its employee roster by 20% to control spending. Similarly, Flexport, despite receiving significant funding, also announced layoffs. PayPal also decided to cut its staff by 9%.

In other notable news, OpenAI revised its GPT-4 model to address its reluctance in completing tasks, which was seen as a form of digital laziness. Meanwhile, Ola founder’s AI venture, Krutrim, became India’s first AI unicorn with a $50 million funding round. Arrival, a commercial EV startup, faced a significant drop in valuation, showcasing the challenges in the SPAC world. Additionally, Amazon’s deal with iRobot for robot vacuums fell through, leading to potential job cuts and new developments in home automation.

Overall, despite the negative headlines and challenges faced by startups and tech companies, there were still notable stories and fundraises in the startup world. From innovative features in media streaming to advancements in AI and robotics, the startup ecosystem continued to show resilience and determination amidst the ongoing challenges.

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