A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…
Google Will Launch Android Pay At I/O In May (Ars Technica)
A source close to the matter told Ars on Wednesday that Google will be announcing a new payments API that will be called Android Pay at Google’s I/O conference in May. The platform will power in-store and in-app payments for third-party apps.
Bing’s Stefan Weitz Thinks Search Is About to Change Dramatically (Street Fight)
The company’s director of search believes an explosion of passive data will reshape the search business, creating new ways for consumers to find local information and forcing the industry to rethink one of the most successful business models from the Internet-era.
Drones Overhead In L.A.’s Valley Are Tracking Mobile Devices’ Locations (VentureBeat)
Since early February, several small drones flying around the San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles have been determining mobile devices’ locations from Wi-Fi and cellular transmission signals. The firm says that this is the first time an ad tech company has employed drones to collect wireless data.
Community News and the Long Game: An ‘Indie’ Makes a Case for the ‘One-Off’ (Street Fight)
Tom Grubisich: Community news has a decade-plus of digital publishing experience, but it’s not yet clear which kind of community platforms will be winners. New Canaanite founder Michael Dinan has many perspectives on the issue.
Apple Maps Adds Yext, GasDaddy, GreatSchools & Other Data Providers (Apple Maps Marketing)
While we had previously discovered that Yext and a number of local search agencies were going to be providing data to Apple Maps, it looks like Apple made it official some time this past month by adding Yext as a supplier of “Business Listings Data” to Apple Maps’ Acknowledgements page.
Bigcommerce, Square Partnership Offers Omnichannel To SMBs (ZDNet)
The two tech startups are connecting their platforms to enable brick-and-mortar merchants using Square’s payment services to create a branded online store via tools from Bigcommerce — all the while tying together the transactions from both the physical and online stores.
Uber’s Food Delivery Experiment in Barcelona (Harvard Business Review)
Why is Uber going into the food-delivery business in Barcelona? By placing the service in the “other forms of transportation” category and paying taxes, Uber and its drivers become legal with a value proposition that is even more potent than the original one.
With Brand Relevance Fading, BBB Strikes Deal With Porch to Distribute Ratings (Screenwerk)
While the non-profit Better Business Bureau may still have some relevance to some consumers and businesses in terms of dispute resolution, its brand has become almost totally diluted and irrelevant in the digitally dominated world of local business search. BBB has now done a deal with home services directory site Porch.
On-Demand Valet Startup Luxe Picks Up $20M From Redpoint And Venrock (TechCrunch)
On-demand valet startup Luxe is only a few months old, but it’s gaining significant early traction with customers. Fewer than six months after its official launch last October, sources say the company has raised a $20 million Series A round of financing that is being co-led by Redpoint Ventures and Venrock Partners.
Yes, Google Is Testing Green Star Reviews In The Search Results (Search Engine Land)
About six-months ago, Google began testing color variations for the reviews stars you would see in the search results. Typically you would see orange colored stars next to sites that deployed review rich snippets, but sometimes Google tests different colors. Over the past week or so, Google has upped these tests.