A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal content, commerce, and technology.
Amazon Buys 3D Mapping Startup UpNext (GigaOm)
It looks like Amazon is building up its presence in the mapping business. The tech giant has closed a deal to acquire 3D mapping startup UpNext. For Amazon, which doesn’t have a mapping service of its own, the acquisition seems to mark a move into new territory.
Groupon Chairman Lefkofsky Steps Back From Company (WSJ)
Eric Lefkofsky, Groupon’s executive chairman and co-founder, said he has stepped back from day-to-day work with the company so he can devote more attention to his venture-capital firm. The company’s stock closed Monday at $9.51, down 10.5% on the day and less than half the level of its initial public offering price of $20 a share.
Google+ Local Officially Replaces Places Apps in Mobile (Screenwerk)
Greg Sterling: “Google has yet to integrate local search, Zagat scores and local listings into the Google+ app itself — to make it consistent with Google+ on the PC. Regardless, there’s somewhat more utility and a generally higher level of polish on these apps vs. the earlier Google Places.”
The Weather Channel Acquiring Weather Underground (NYT)
The Weather Channel Companies is going to gobble up one of its top competitors, the Weather Underground. The acquisition, announced on Monday afternoon, will give the Weather Channel — already by far the most-visited weather news Web site in the United States — an even greater lead over other such companies.
Forget “Friends” and “Contacts,” Nextdoor Is the Social Network for Neighbors (PandoDaily)
By creating a free, neighborhood-based social network that places privacy and community above all else, Nextdoor might just be the latest social network that’s actually worth joining. If Facebook is meant for family and friends, Twitter for celebrities and “Internet friends,” and LinkedIn for the professional network, Nextdoor is meant for the people that call your neighborhood home.