A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…
Uber Joins Baidu as Nokia’s Maps Unit Draws Multiple Bidders (Bloomberg)
Uber is teaming up with Baidu to pursue Nokia Oyj’s maps business as a bidding war for the unit intensifies. Microsoft has offered to buy a minority stake, while three U.S. private-equity firms are also in the running, the people said.
Why Google’s Competition May Be Gaining in Mobile Search (Street Fight)
For years, venture capitalists steered clear of the most successful Internet product ever: search. But now, investors are betting that a handful of new mobile search startups can question Google’s dominance. One of those startups, Vurb, might have the answer.
GrubHub Looks Beyond the Sit-Down Restaurant for Growth (Wall Street Journal)
GrubHub expects its base of more than 5 million home diners to place more online orders for food that is made by entrepreneurs with commercial kitchens—but without sit-down dining options. By selling prepared food yet forgoing a sit-down restaurant, “you don’t have to pay for ambiance,” said CEO Matt Maloney.
5 Hot Startups Connecting the Local Economy (Street Fight)
It’s not just big box stores and ecommerce sites that are impacting our malls and main streets: the web has started to reinvent the very systems that help us find, buy and get on our hands on goods and service for sale in the real world. Here are five startups that want to help better coordinate our local economies.
New Platforms, Including BrightRoll, Plug Into Placed For In-Store Measurement (MediaPost)
Location-based ad-targeting firm and in-store attribution company Placed has been on a partnership spree. One month after partnering with a handful of programmatic ad-buying platforms Placed has added BrightRoll, Moasis, Mediabrix and others to its list of partners as well.
Apple Readies First Significant Apple Watch Updates (9to5Mac)
Nearly a month after the release of the first-generation Apple Watch, a proven source has disclosed a collection of upcoming Apple Watch software and hardware updates. The features seek to enhance Apple Watch connectivity with other Apple devices, Wi-Fi capabilities, and integration with third-party applications.
Google Making (Mobile) Search More Transactional with Buy Buttons, Booking Links (Screenwerk)
Greg Sterling: Over the weekend it came out that Google is going to start including “buy” buttons on selected mobile search ads in the relatively near future. This is part of a broader movement to “compress the funnel” and to enable mobile users to complete intended or desired actions with fewer steps.
Local Media Consortium, Worldnow Form Partnership (NetNewsCheck)
The Local Consortium announced on Monday that it has formed a partnership with Worldnow, the digital media management and ad services company, to leverage each other’s respective affiliate networks and create greater scale for national advertisers.
Not Content to be the “Uber for Alcohol,” Drizly Announces $13M in Funding and a New Partnership (Pando)
Unlike Uber, Drizly has navigated regulations by not just complying with laws, but by taking a proactive approach to following the myriad rules on alcohol sales, which vary from state to state. And additionally, very unlike Uber, Drizly is being embraced by the alcohol industry.
Groupon’s Breadcrumb Live iPhone App Lets Restaurants Monitor Business in Real-Time (The Next Web)
Groupon acquired Breadcrumb back in 2012 and it’s been chugging along ever since, even as rivals like Square have been nipping at its heels. Now the point of sale service is launching Breadcrumb Live, an iPhone app for restaurants.