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Conference Notebook: Navigating a Future For Indoor Mapping

No Comments 23 July 2014 by

In a world overflowing with data, it’s ironic that the last bastion of opacity — the place about which businesses know the least — is also the place where we spend the majority of our money: the physical store...

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Off the Block

Yelp, Foursquare, and the Downsides of Mobile-First

No Comments 21 July 2014 by

In an era where the "mobile-first" motto borders on dogma for tech companies, the virtues of the desktop internet often are overlooked. While Yelp continues to benefit from desktop search, mobile-first Foursquare has struggled to sustain the explosive growth it saw early on — partly because its influence on the web ecosystem remains relatively weak...

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Off the Block

Order Ahead, Confusion at Counter: Square’s New App, and the Problem of Leading From Behind

2 Comments 15 July 2014 by

A clumsy experience with Square's new app points to a deeper challenge facing the tech industry as it takes aim at the way we buy and sell goods in the real-world: technology companies, in all their glory, can only lead from behind. As companies like Square look to not only automate existing behaviors, but introduce new ones, the gatekeepers to the future of retail are on the main streets and in the malls across America.

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Designing a New Value Proposition for Consumer Location Data

No Comments 11 July 2014 by

In a paper published earlier this month, a group of researchers tried to put a price tag on the personally identifiable information that flows from our mobile devices. The results shine a light on the unique challenges facing companies interested in mining location data, and the divergent paths of two tech companies that have built businesses around that information...

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In OpenTable Deal, Signs of Deeper Convergence in Travel and Local

2 Comments 01 July 2014 by

Two recent acquisitions by Priceline and TripAdvisor offer an early look into a logic that could drive a more comprehensive consolidation of the travel and local technology sectors. Many of the structures built to help visitors navigate new cities — and implicitly for marketers to reach tourists — might quickly become obsolete...

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When the ‘Popup’ Store Sticks Around

No Comments 18 June 2014 by

Retailers from art galleries to apparel manufacturers have started to rethink their sprawling storefronts. Instead, companies have turned to smaller, more specialized locations that that can adapt to declining store revenues while addressing some new opportunities in selling to a connected consumer...

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At Tesla, a Peek Into Retail On-Demand

No Comments 17 June 2014 by

The company has developed a retail and marketing strategy aimed at getting people into one of its three fully electric models regardless of whether they can afford, or even are interested in buying, a luxury car. The model draws on some of the work of the legendary Apple's Ron Johnsonas well as the emerging phenomenon of on-demand technologies such as Uber....

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To Wait or Wait Not: The Changing Dynamics of Eating Out

No Comments 13 June 2014 by

In New York, a growing number of the city's most popular eateries have decided to eschew reservations, in yet another example of how local technology is affecting the restaurant industry. Now startup NoWait has developed an app to improve the waitlist experience for both restaurants and diners...

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The Commerce Graph: Some Thoughts on the Future of Physical Exchange

3 Comments 11 June 2014 by

The “Commerce Graph” is a new framework we have developed to think about the future of physical exchange. The model offers an alternative to the dominant narrative about the commerce landscape that frames digital networks as an adversary of physical exchange — a force that will inevitably drive us to buy and sell nearly everything virtually...

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Off the Block

For Small Businesses, A Reprieve After Decades of Retreat

No Comments 16 May 2014 by

Earlier this week, the National Federation of Independent Business announced that its small business confidence index rose 1.8 points to 95.2 in April, the highest reading since October 2007. With small business week coming to a close, small businesses are certainly better off today than they were a decade ago...

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The Commerce Graph

The “Commerce Graph” is a new framework we have developed to think about the future of physical exchange. The model offers an alternative to the dominant narrative about the commerce landscape that frames digital networks as an adversary of physical exchange.

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When the ‘Pop-Up’ Store Sticks Around

Retailers have started to rethink their sprawling storefronts. Instead, companies are turning to smaller, more specialized locations that that can adapt to declining store revenues while addressing some new opportunities in selling to a connected consumer.

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