A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology
SK Telecom Agrees to Acquire Shopkick (Wall Street Journal)
South Korean wireless company SK Telecom said it agreed to acquire U.S.-based shopping-loyalty app Shopkick, paying about $200 million for the company. The startup garnered attention last year when it started testing its app in two Macy’s stores using beacons, devices that can detect a smartphone in a store using Bluetooth technology.
Millennial SVP: A ‘Broad Evolution’ Beyond Geo-Fencing Coming in Mobile (Street Fight)
Street Fight recently caught up with Matt Tengler, SVP of product at Millennial Media, to talk about the way in which location figured into the company’s strategy, the impact location data could have on the broader digital advertising marketplace, and whether small business matters (yet) in mobile advertising.
With New Ad Platform, Facebook Opens Gates to Its Vault of User Data (New York Times)
Facebook is going to take its targeted ads to the rest of the Internet, mounting its most direct challenge yet to Google. Facebook will roll out a rebuilt ad platform, called Atlas, that will allow marketers to tap its detailed knowledge of its users to direct ads to those people on thousands of other websites and mobile apps.
Is Apple Pay Fixing a Problem Consumers Don’t Have? (Street Fight)
Michael Boland: Mobile payments have to offer something greater than reducing my wallet by the atomic weight of a credit card. We’re talking tangible benefits like skipping store lines, saving time, or monetary rewards. Without these benefits, I don’t see how the masses will be compelled to change such an entrenched habit.
OpenTable CEO on How Its Game Changes Within Priceline (Skift)
Given the consumer base of sister companies Booking.com, Agoda and Kayak, OpenTable now has the chance to expand beyond its traditional local orientation into a dining app for travelers, as well. Some of its learnings and technologies can also apply to hotels and tours and activities.
Visa: Apple Pay Will Pave the Way for More Mobile Wallets That People Can Actually Use (GigaOm)
Visa’s technology chief Rajat Taneja has high hopes for Apple Pay, but not for all of the reasons you might expect. What gets Tenaja really worked up is that Apple Pay could become a blueprint for all sorts of other mobile payments services worldwide.
Don’t Believe the Hype, the ‘Sharing Economy’ Masks a Failing Economy (Guardian)
Evgeny Morozov: At its worst, the sharing economy turns us into perpetual hustlers, cementing our connection to the global market. This sharing imperative dictates that everything that we own, from tangible assets to intangible thoughts, be categorised and assigned some kind of a unique identifier like the QR code.
In Chicago, Food Inspectors are Guided by Big Data (Washington Post)
The city is experimenting with a new technology to guide where inspections should occur, based on factors such as current weather, nearby construction and past health code violations. The software analyzes about 10 years’ worth of historical data, across about 24 variables, to determine which factors most strongly predict inspection failures.
Amazon’s Grocery Delivery Business Coming to New York City (Recode)
Amazon is preparing to start its Fresh grocery delivery business in New York City as early as next month, as the online retailer takes more aggressive steps toward making its same-day delivery service national. Amazon may eventually launch its grocery delivery business in Philadelphia as well, using food stored in the same facility.
6 Clues That Google Will Turn Uber Into a Self-Driving Home Delivery Service (AdWeek)
Here are six clues that suggest Google has big plans for its robot autos and the car service Uber. In fact, one source predicts they will merge in “five to 10 years” to create self-driving home delivery service to compete with Amazon’s drones.
HotelTonight Is Dropping The “Tonight” Requirement (ReadWrite)
HotelTonight is no longer requiring you to book a hotel tonight, in other words. It now lets you book a room up to seven days in advance. That small change in an app’s interface could vastly increase the appeal of HotelTonight beyond the last-minute crowd.