Many shoppers would agree that the worst part of any in-store experience is waiting in line. Amazon did away with those pesky queues entirely this week when they launched their new Amazon Go store in Seattle. The brick and motor location, which has been in testing for a year, is completely devoid of registers and cashiers. Customers simply scan their Amazon Go app upon entering the store, then computer vision and algorithms determine what is removed from shelves and “bought” when taken outside. Could the ease of in-person shopping be catching back up with the internet?
Scrambled eggs without the eggs? Yes, now it’s possible. Silicon Valley startup JUST has been working for years on a veggie-based egg substitute using Asia’s most popular bean, the mung. The company this week finally debuted the Mongolian-grown mung bean-driven ovoid alternative in Asia during a Hong Kong event – the true representation of full-circle (or oval?) product development. Simply pour the mung mixture into a hot pan, and watch it cook and curdle like the real thing. With big name investors all throughout Asia, the US outfit hopes its futuristic food will take the Far East by storm. And after they make the perfect scramble? JUST says clean meat is next.
Ahead of this week’s high-profile World Economic Forum in Davos, more than 140 global business leaders converged in Versailles for a summit hosted by French President Emmanuel Macron. The event was marked by the announcement of some $3 billion in investments in the country, including from Facebook and Toyota. Google, meanwhile, said it was opening a new AI research center in Paris. It’s all part of Macron’s “Choose France” initiative, which aims to right the country’s sinking economy by attracting major foreign investment.
The rapid rise of cryptocurrency has dominated financial news headlines around the world, and now a US company is taking it even more mainstream by teaming up with one of the biggest names in the beautiful game. English Premier League club Arsenal this week announced it had reached an agreement to promote a new cryptocurrency being launched by US gaming company CashBet. The deal includes exposure on Arsenal’s social media platforms, as well as original brand content involving players. CashBet CEO Mike Reaves said he was “delighted” to be joining forces “with one of world football’s true giants in Arsenal, enabling us to build our brand and engage this audience in a meaningful way.”
The business of verifying who is who online is growing increasingly complicated. That is all the more true for a social media giant like Facebook, which can allow a single account to connect with an enormous audience. In an effort to tighten its security measures, the company this week announced it was acquiring American ID-verification outfit Confirm. The move will not only help Facebook make sure it knows who is creating an account, it could also help users add an extra level of security for themselves. “This is the culmination of three years of hard work building technology that will keep people safe and secure online,” Confirm said in a statement.