A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology
Location Is Everything, As Mobile Ad Startup xAd Raises $50M Led By IVP (TechCrunch)
xAd, a mobile ad startup that specialises in serving media specific to a user’s location, has announced $50 million in funding — significant not only for the size of the round, but also for the context around the money coming into its coffers. The funding round — a combination of debt and equity financing — comes in the wake of acquisition offers and approaches from other VCs.
Apple Watch to Allow Mobile Payments (Wall Street Journal)
Apple plans to include short-range wireless technology in its coming smartwatch, signaling that it sees a role for the device in digital payments. The gadget’s use of near-field communication reflects Apple’s broader ambitions for the so-called iWatch beyond health and fitness tracking. (Subscription required)
Interpublic Invests in Mobile Measurement Company Placed (MediaPost)
IPG has taken a minority stake in Seattle-based mobile attribution firm Placed, the holding company confirmed Thursday. The IPG Media Lab will oversee the company’s relationship with Placed, which specializes in measuring the impact of mobile advertisements on in-store visits.
How LymeLine Succeeds Against a 133-Year-Old Daily (Street Fight)
Tom Grubisich: The community news site in southeastern Connecticut competes against a long-established daily and Sunday print and online newspaper — and is thriving. Publisher/editor Olwen Logan tells Street Fight how she does it.
PayPal Expands Further Into Offline Retail And Mobile Payments With New PayPal Here SDK (TechCrunch)
PayPal is rolling out a new SDK designed to help its business move further into offline retail. The SDK will help online merchants sell their products offline, while also allowing brick-and-mortar merchants a new entry point into the world of mobile commerce.
How to Make Your “Uber for X” Idea More Than Just a VC Pitch (Recode)
Ajay Chaopra: The back-end infrastructure of mobile-enabled on-demand services is often complex and challenging to scale. We believe that leaders in this space will distinguish themselves by how well they execute on two key back-end characteristics: Disintermediation and democratization.
Boxscore: Apple Will Dominate Payments, Says Everyone Except Apple (Street Fight)
A weekly recap of the week that was in local tech with a mix of news bits, analysis and hearsay.
Starbucks App Gets Uber Integration for Rides to Stores (TheNextWeb)
If you’re jonesing for a coffee and it’s too far to walk, the Starbucks iOS app was just updated with Uber integration. Now you can call a black car to get your black coffee.
Google’s Cartographer is a Backpack for Mapping the Insides of Buildings (Verge)
Where the company’s Trekker backpack was designed to map and capture Street View imagery, this backpack is purely for mapping interiors of buildings, with humans doing the legwork.
San Francisco’s Public Transit Agency Is In Talks To Build A Smartphone Ticketing App (Business Insider)
The San Francisco Municipal Transit Agency is in negotiations with vendors to build a mobile app that can take payments and replace fare cards for the Muni light rail system, two agency officials told BI Intelligence.
LBMA Podcast: Google’s Local Ads, 7Eleven Rolls Out Belly (Street Fight)
On the show: Sprooki rolls out beacons in Singapore malls; Philipp Schmitt’s location-based light painting project; Runkeeper partners with KIIP; PitneyBowes’ location start-up incubator in India; QR codes to help Alzheimer sufferers from getting lost. Special guest is Peter Cahill, founder of Life Line Response.