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Instagram is Shutting Down 🔒 Its IGTV App
Instagram has announced that it will be shutting down its standalone IGTV app to focus on keeping all video in the main Instagram app.
In a blog post, the company said, “Because of our focus on Reels, in-stream video ads (previously known as IGTV ads) will no longer be supported. Creators that are actively monetising with in-stream video ads will receive a temporary monthly payment based on recent earnings.”
The Meta-owned platform said that it is closing down its standalone IGTV app as “part of [its] efforts to make video as simple as possible to discover and create.”
In addition, the company said that any videos in the main app will have a full-screen viewer and tap-to-mute and that it is also working on a consistent way to share the different types of videos like Reels or video posts.
Though Instagram is getting rid of the IGTV app, alongside the In-Stream ads that were inserted into videos over a minute long, the company has made it clear that it will still focus heavily on video content.
Lucid Motors Cuts Electric Vehicles 🚗 Production Forecast For 2022
American EV manufacturer Lucid Motors is cutting its car production forecast by as much as 40% for this year, citing supply chain constraints and a continued focus on quality.
While announcing its Q4 financial results, the luxury EV maker said it was revising its production expectations to 12,000 to 14,000 vehicles from the original prediction of 20,000 vehicles.
Peter Rawlinson, Lucid's CEO and CTO said, "Looking ahead, we're updating our outlook for 2022 production to a range of 12,000 to 14,000 vehicles. This reflects the extraordinary supply chain and logistics challenges we've encountered and our unrelenting focus on delivering the highest-quality products.”
“We remain confident in our ability to capture the tremendous opportunities ahead given our technology leadership and strong demand for our cars," added Rawlinson. However, the company did not reveal what supply chain issues were causing its problems.
Currently, the company has received more than 25,000 customer reservations, reflecting potential sales of more than $2.4 billion.
Lucid has also confirmed that the expansion of its manufacturing facility in Casa Grande, Arizona manufacturing facility is on track.
Additionally, it announced plans to build its first international manufacturing facility in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Cryptocurrency Exchange VALR Raises $50 Million in Series B 💰
VALR, a cryptocurrency exchange headquartered in South Africa, has raised $50 million in its Series B funding round, marking the largest crypto funding round in Africa to date.
The funding was led by Pantera Capital and also saw participation from Alameda Research, Coinbase Ventures, Cadenza, CMT Digital, Distributed Global, GSR, Third Prime, and Avon Ventures. Existing investors Bittrex and 4Di Capital, among others, also participated in the oversubscribed round.
VALR was co-founded by Badi Sudhakaran, Farzam Ehsani, and Theo Bohnen in 2018. The platform offers users to buy, sell, store, and transfer cryptocurrencies seamlessly and securely.
With its platform, the company bridges the gap between the traditional fiat financial system and cryptocurrencies.
Since its inception, the startup has processed over $7.5 billion in trading volume from more than 250,000 retail customers and 500 global institutional users.
VALR plans to use the fresh proceeds to continue expansion in other markets in Africa and India. Additionally, the company plans to hire more employees and roll out new products and services to its growing base of customers.
Ukraine 🇺🇦 Receives Over $37 Million in Crypto Donations Amid Ongoing War
Amid the ongoing war with Russia, communities across the world are sending support and helping Ukraine in every way possible.
Along with diplomatic and moral support, several people have donated funds – in the form of cryptocurrency to help the Ukrainian government.
The amount of tracked crypto donations received by the government of Ukraine, military, and charities has exceeded $37 million, according to data compiled by Cointelegraph.
The top recipient of crypto donations is the "Reserve fund of Ukraine," which is backed by local crypto exchange Kuna. The exchange has reportedly received $13 million, mainly through Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Tether.
With $7.2 million in donations, “Come Back Alive,” an NGO that says it’s helping the Ukrainian Armed Forces is second on the list.
UkraineDAO, which is led by Pussy Riot’s Nadya Tolokonnikova, stands third with $2.89 million in donations.
The official Twitter account of the Ukrainian government also posted Bitcoin and Ethereum addresses to directly accept those cryptocurrencies as donations.
It looks like cryptocurrencies have emerged as an important alternative way of crowdfunding, as they allow quick cross-border funding, which bypasses financial institutions that might be blocking payments to such groups.
Around the Web 🌐
Survey Shows Top Regions Where Workers Are Accepting Crypto Salaries: According to the State of Hiring Report 2021, Latin America (LATAM) and Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA) are the top regions that have employees taking a portion of their pay in crypto. The report says that among the employees that took at least a part of their salaries in crypto, 52% were from the LATAM region, followed by EMEA (34%), North America (7%), and Asia Pacific (7%).
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