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Wednesday is here, and we’re still excited about Disrupt later in the year. African Startups: We’d love to have you apply for Startup Battlefield 200, and we’ve also opened our Expo+ Pass sale.

christina and Haha

TechCrunch Top 3

  • What is the password?: Google Access Keys are now rolling out to account users around the world. Passkeys give you access to your account without passwords, and “authentication essentially syncs across devices via the cloud using cryptographic key pairs, allowing you to sign in to websites and apps using the same biometrics or Screen lock PIN used to unlock your devices, ” Pablo writes
  • in the driver’s seat: Stripe, a longtime Lyft partner, has now signed a big deal with Uber. ingrid has more.
  • making an impact: manish asks the question: “Where is India in the generative AI race?” and he answers it by taking a look at how Indian entrepreneurs are working to harness the excitement around this trend.

Startups and VCs

Plexamp, the music player for Plex, now works with ChatGPT for playlist creation, reports Sarah. That piqued my curiosity and I spent most of the morning using ChatGPT-4 to create playlists. Among other things, I asked him to create a list of the top 10 essential heavy metal songs, great music to work with, and the most nostalgic songs of 2004.

I also asked ChatGPT-4 to come up with a list of the top 5 songs about startups, and… damn, he didn’t just make the song list, he also explained because every song made sense on this list. I’m not going to lie, this continues to amaze me. Below is the list, and I turned them into a handy Spotify playlist, Apple Music playlist, and YouTube playlist for you too.

  1. “It Started at the Bottom” by Drake: The lyrics of this song about starting from scratch and working your way up resonate with the journey of many startups as they strive to achieve success.
  2. “Lose Yourself” by Eminem: The intensity and drive present in the lyrics of this song may be representative of the dedication and focus required to build a successful startup.
  3. “It’s My Life” by Bon Jovi: This anthem about taking control of one’s destiny and seizing opportunities aligns with the mindset of many entrepreneurs starting their own businesses.
  4. “Don’t Stop Believing” by Journey: This classic track serves as a reminder for startup founders to keep believing in their vision, even when the road to success is fraught with challenges.
  5. “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor: As a symbol of determination and resilience, this song has become an anthem for those who face adversity and strive to achieve their goals, just like the spirit of a startup founder.

Okay, enough of the musically inspired nonsense. Here’s more startup news for you:

Ask Sophie: Will I be allowed to enter the US if my passport expires in 5 months?

lone figure at the entrance to the hedge maze that has an American flag in the center

Image Credits: Bryce Durbin/TechCrunch

Dear Sophie,

I founded a startup in Zimbabwe a few years ago. I planned to visit the United States for the first time next month to see the market and applied for a visitor’s visa.

I plan to stay in the US for a couple of months, but I just found out that my passport expires in September. I understand that I need to have at least six months left on my passport in order to travel to the United States.

Is that (still) true? Do I need to delay my trip?

—Hopeful in Harare

Three more from the TC+ team:

TechCrunch+ is our membership program that helps start-up founders and teams get ahead of the rest. You can sign up here. Use code “DC” to get 15% off an annual subscription!

big tech inc

Remember when Airbnb started as a way to rent a room in a house to avoid staying in a hotel? Now that the platform’s average home rental prices have risen (up 36% since 2019, according to the company), it’s refocusing on individual rooms to offer users more affordable alternatives. Ivan has more.

Meanwhile, Sarah was on dating app giant Match Group’s first-quarter earnings call and reports that Match believes the recent Apple-Epic Games antitrust appeal ruling, while largely in Apple’s favour, could result in relief from App Store fees for developers.

And we have five more for you:

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