Daily Crunch: Streaming services respond to COVID-19

Streaming services will reduce video quality in Europe, we get our hands on the new MacBook Air and Anthony Levandowski pleads guilty. Here’s your Daily Crunch for March 20, 2020.

1. Netflix will reduce streaming quality in Europe for 30 days

EU Commissioner Thierry Breton has called for Netflix to reduce streaming quality in Europe — a move to limit its overall bandwidth usage as more users turn to streaming services for in-home entertainment during the outbreak — and the company has confirmed that it will comply with this request.

Other services have followed suit, with Amazon and YouTube both announcing that they will be reducing streaming quality as well.

2. Apple MacBook Air review

Brian Heater says it feels good to type again.

3. Anthony Levandowski pleads guilty to one count of trade secrets theft under plea deal

Levandowski — the former Google engineer and serial entrepreneur who was at the center of a lawsuit between Uber and Waymo — has pled guilty to one count of stealing trade secrets while working at Google under a plea agreement reached with the U.S. District Attorney.

4. Here’s how TechCrunch is keeping our brains busy while we’re stuck at home

Now more than ever, diving into new skills, old interests and even totally fluffy mindless entertainment can keep our minds refreshed and our days full. From at-home workouts and soothing virtual farming simulators to Catherine’s honestly uncannily good drawings of our staff pets, here’s what’s working for us.

5. Despite canceled trade shows, gaming startups can still win an extra life

As organizers cancel events with massive attendance, like SXSW (400,000 attendees), E3 (66,000), GDC (65,000) and Mobile World Congress (100,000), mobile game developers have felt the crunch. So here are five ways to salvage a launch lost to a trade show cancellation. (Extra Crunch membership required.)

6. Slack adds 7K customers in 7 weeks amid remote-work boom, besting its preceding 2 results

Don’t worry about uptime, though: In a memo about business continuity, Slack said that “the demands on our infrastructure do not change when employees shift away from working together in the same office; there is no difference in load on our systems whether people are connecting from their office, a cellular network, or their homes.”

7. Announcing the Disrupt SF Digital Pass

The new Digital Pass and Digital Pass Pro (to be announced soon!) are a complement — not a replacement — for the existing Disrupt SF conference. But with so much uncertainty around the coronavirus pandemic, we’ve sped up our plans to offer access to Disrupt SF content and networking opportunities virtually.

The Daily Crunch is TechCrunch’s roundup of our biggest and most important stories. If you’d like to get this delivered to your inbox every day at around 9am Pacific, you can subscribe here.