A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology
Facebook Plans Mobile-Ad Network (Wall Street Journal)
Facebook is planning a mobile-ad network that will allow the company to tap its vast reservoir of data about users to help marketers target ads on other services. Dozens of companies provide similar services, but Facebook is well-positioned because its more than one billion users tell Facebook so much about themselves, from their age and gender to their location and interests.
Locable’s Aim: To Help Sites Build Community as a Brand (Street Fight)
Tom Grubisich: Locable is a network of 50 local and hyperlocal websites that shows its “partners” how to build community around their brand. It does this through an approach it calls “Main Street for the 21st Century.” In this recent Q & A with Street Fight, the company’s co-founder and CEO Brian Ostrovsky talks about what this approach means, and how community sites can position themselves for success.
Apple Interviewing Job Candidates for Mobile Payments Push (Recode)
Apple has been interviewing senior payments industry executives to push ahead on a plan to build an electronic payments business, according to two people familiar with the process. The company has been meeting with potential applicants for two new positions at Apple focused exclusively on building a business around the hundreds of millions of credit cards it already has on file.
6 Ways to Improve Business Operations Using Indoor Location Data (Street Fight)
In many cases, indoor location analytics platforms take the guesswork out of operations management. Rather than guessing whether expensive in-store displays are increasing conversions, and wondering how dwell times influence sales, retailers can look at the data being spit out by their analytics platforms to find their answers. Here are six ways that businesses can use indoor location tools to improve in-store operations.
Square Denies Report of Potential Sale (USA Today)
Mobile-payments service Square on Monday denied a report it is talking with several tech giants about a possible acquisition. The San Francisco-based company, led by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey, took issue with a story in the Wall Street Journal that said Square discussed a potential deal with Google, and engaged in informal talks with Apple and eBay’s PayPal division about an acquisition.
Airbnb Set to Argue Against New York Rental Law Probe (Bloomberg)
Airbnb plans to challenge a New York state demand for information into whether the online, home rental service violates state housing and occupancy tax laws. The court clash pits the San Francisco-based technology business that supporters say should be welcomed as a boost for local tourism against housing advocates who argue the service is driving up rents and turning affordable accommodation into illegal hotels.
Why U.S. Carriers Are Struggling In the Mobile Ads Business (AdAge)
For mobile advertisers hungry for user data, the richest sources are the mobile carriers themselves. And, for the carriers, mobile ads are a convenient new well for revenues as smartphone ownership in the U.S. and Europe approaches a peak.
OpenStreetMap Founder Steve Coast charts new territory at Telenav (SF Gate)
Steve Coast, the founder of Open Street Map, previously worked at Microsoft as a principal architect of Bing Mobile, but he jumped ship last September to join Telenav in Sunnyvale, Calif., as head of OSM. Under his leadership, Telenav recently acquired Skobbler, a privately held Berlin company that uses OSM to produce mobile location technology.
I Saw the Beacon-Packed Store of the Future in 1990. It’s Still Flawed (AdAge)
Michael Caccavale: In the early 1990s, I toured Arthur Andersen’s “Smart Store 2000,” and it looked a lot like the retail experience marketers are envisioning now, loaded with location-based marketing systems akin to Apple’s iBeacon technology. However, the promise of the new “location-enabled commerce engines” is offset by a few realities.