A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…
Google Maps gets better integration with Uber and OpenTable (Mashable)
Google unveiled a new update Wednesday that allows users to make restaurant reservations and get more precise Uber estimates from within the Maps app. The update also adds two new features: restaurant reservations (via OpenTable) and Uber wait time and price estimates.
30A.com Is More Than a Website — It’s a ‘Brand’ for the Laid Back (Street Fight)
Mike Ragsdale’s 30A.com, serving the Gulf Coast beach communities of Santa Rosa in Northwest Florida, is much more than a website. It’s an “international brand” that includes a digital radio station and a retail operation that sells everything from to T-shirts to beach chairs to beer.
Walmart Brings Product Search To The In-Store Experience (Search Engine Land)
Walmart has updated its Android app to offer an improved in-store experience with search at the center. Walmart’s search My Store allows in-store shoppers to use keywords or product names to search real-time inventory, which then returns a list of products, pricing and the precise in-store location.
In Building Local Marketplaces, a Choice of Chicken or Egg (Street Fight)
The success of Uber and Airbnb have spawned a deluge of startups that have replicated the on-demand marketplace model across a range of verticals. But developing marketplaces locally requires a deft approach to scale that balances a network’s need for liquidity with a startup’s desire for growth.
Amazon Tries Out Taxi Deliveries In California Cities (CNBC)
Amazon is using the taxi-hailing mobile app, Flywheel, to ship parcels via licensed cabs, studying the feasibility of using taxi fleets more broadly as a delivery avenue. In its latest test, Amazon summoned cabs through Flywheel to distribution centers, from where they picked up as many as 10 packages.
Lyft Sues Former Exec Who Allegedly Took Company Secrets To Uber (Business Insider)
Lyft is accusing a former executive of sharing company secrets with rival Uber. Lyft has filed a lawsuit against its former chief operating officer, Travis VanderZanden, whom it alleges downloaded a number of confidential documents to his personal Dropbox in August.
Thanks to Apple Pay, Google Wallet NFC Use is Growing Fast. That’s a Good Thing (GigaOm)
It doesn’t matter who implemented NFC mobile payments first; it matters that there’s a big uptake. And that’s what Apple Pay has, which Google Wallet is benefiting from: New users have doubled of late according to one report.
Where’ve You Been? Your Smartphone’s Wi-fi Is Telling Everyone. (Ars Technica)
During a brief test, we were able to match specific devices with recent movements of the owners of the phones—where they worked, where their homes were, and in some cases where they had shopped recently—using publicly available Wi-Fi base station mapping data.
Square Hits Its Magic Number: 1 Billion Credit Card Payments Processed (GigaOm)
One billion is certainly a milestone after only five years in business, but in the grand scheme of the financial industry, it’s still pretty small potatoes. In comparison, PayPal processes nearly 10 million transactions a day, meaning its handling Square’s entire historical volume at least three times a year.
Momofuku Chef David Chang Backs Upcoming NYC Food Delivery Service Maple (TechCrunch)
Maple aims to sell meals for less than $15, including taxes and delivery fees, and hopes to be able to get meals to customers in fewer than 15 minutes. It’s kind of like San Francisco-based operations like Sprig or Spoonrocket, both of which offer a limited menu of food options at an affordable price.