Salesforce employees are not happy
We made it to Friday, readers. I'm Paayal Zaveri and it's another busy one today.
There's no way around it: The biggest news of the day doesn't come from the world of tech.
Former President Donald Trump was indicted by a New York grand jury yesterday. This caps a nearly five-year investigation into Trump's personal and business finances by the Manhattan district attorney's office. Insider has a live updates page that you can follow.
That said, there's plenty happening in tech news, from Salesforce layoffs to an unusual new perk for Meta employees.
Let's get started on our top stories.
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1. Salesforce conducts more layoffs. Employees aren't happy about how the cloud giant is handling its plan to cut 10% of its workforce. CEO Marc Benioff personally responded to some employees who are complaining on Slack, my colleague Ashley Stewart reports.
The most recent round of cuts hit a sales team selling the highest-tier of support called Signature, as well as Salesforce.org, the unit that sells services to non-profits and educational institutions.
Employees are particularly frustrated with how the company has communicated its progress on the layoffs. They say it's unclear how many more rounds of cuts are coming.
The cost-cutting did help Salesforce avoid a proxy battle for control of its board, as activist investors pushed for Salesforce to focus on efficiency. One of those investors, Elliott Management, said earlier this week that it would drop its challenge to the board.
Read why Salesforce employees are upset at how the company is handling layoffs.
In other news:
2. Elon Musk and Sam Altman's messy relationship. Elon Musk helped found OpenAI, the company behind viral smash hit ChatGPT. But since a falling out with its CEO Altman, the two execs have been at odds. Here's a history of their feud.
3. If Apple can't make smart goggles happen, no one can. As you may remember, Apple is reportedly releasing mixed-reality smart goggles later this year. Its own execs are split on if it's a good idea. But experts say Apple is the one company who could make smart goggles a reality, my colleague Asia Martin reports.
4. Welcome to TikTok's sister app, Lemon8. Even as TikTok faces a ban in the US, its parent company Bytedance has rolled out a new app here, called Lemon8. It's building out its creator partnerships team in the US.
5. Apple launches buy now, pay later. Apple is getting in on the growing popularity of buy now, pay later services. It recently launched Apple Pay Later. Here's how it works.
6. Meta's new office perk: a DJ. Meta has been encouraging people to return to its Silicon Valley headquarters over the last few months. Its latest perk to entice office attendance is reportedly a DJ who plays dance music in one of its cafes. Dive into the latest on Meta's employee perks.
7. Virgin Orbit is ceasing operations. The satellite company founded by Richard Branson is laying off 85% of its staff and reportedly ceasing operations "for the foreseeable future." This is after the company was unable to secure much-needed funding. Here's what happened.
8. Lessons from "Instagram University." Meta recently hosted a virtual "Instagram University" event for creators. It taught people about the app's algorithm and how to best use it. My colleague Sydney Bradley attended. Here's her top five takeaways.
Odds and ends:
9. A rare PS5 deal. Ever since the PS5 released over two years ago it's been in high demand. But now it's finally getting a little easier to find it, and there's a pretty good special bundle discount if you get it with the blockbuster "God of War Ragnarok."
10. Gen Z loves dumb phones. As Gen Zers try to limit screen time, they're turning to so-called dumb phones. Remember the ones without screens or internet access? Here's how it's going for them.
The latest people moves in tech:
Ex-Googlers are taking their skills elsewhere. Google built much of the foundational technology behind today's generative-AI boom. Now ex-employees are raising millions for their own startups.
A top Google researcher resigned. He reportedly left earlier this year after warning execs that Google's AI chatbot Bard was trained off its rival ChatGPT.
Microsoft had more layoffs this week. But before that, it was one of the big tech companies that paid the best. Here's what engineers, analysts, and others made before recent layoffs.
Curated by Paayal Zaveri in San Francisco. (Feedback or tips? Email firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet @paayalzaveri) Edited by Matt Weinberger (tweet @gamoid) in San Francisco and Hallam Bullock (tweet @hallam_bullock) in London.
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