Posted by Dale Buss on May 28, 2013 10:41 AM
Walmart is moving ahead with its future in e-commerce, but at the same time the chain is now having problems with one of the stalwart advantages of its glorious past: the stocking of its stores.
The chain has acquired two San Francisco Bay Area tech companies and plans to hire more than 150 engineers, technicians and developers for its growing @WalmartLabs tech lab. Walmart bought One Ops and Tasty Labs to help expand its cloud-computing technology and digital-shopping platforms to compete with e-commerce rival Amazon, the San Jose Mercury News reported.
The effort is part of the same overall push by Walmart that also includes expanded integration with social networks such as Pinterest, mobile check-outs and its test of adding the option for shoppers to have purchases delivered same-day to their homes or to a nearby storage locker.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 27, 2013 03:17 PM
Colgate-Palmolive has a significant stake in the world's oral hygiene market, with such toothpaste brands like Colgate, Elmex and Dentaguard, not to mention that the company accounts for one-third of the world's toothbrush sales.
That number should go up if a U.S. patent that it applied for back in October gets approved. The innovation, “a new toothbrush that releases chemicals straight into your mouth as you brush,” could net the company an additional $330 million—and that's only for one "flavor."
The special paste would allow consumers to have such things as caffeine come to them through their toothpaste in the morning rather than waiting a few more minutes to get through a cup of joe. The flavoring would come through the toothpaste via a patch attached to the back of a specially designed toothbrush.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 20, 2013 05:28 PM
Folks have plenty of options when it comes to streaming online movies and TV shows: Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime and Apple's iTunes come to mind, but Target apparently thinks the space has room for one more.
The retailer is reportedly testing a beta version of Target Ticket, a TV and movie-streaming service with access to 15,000 titles.
It will also provide “new releases, classic movies, and next-day TV,” the beta site claims. Right now, it’s just being tested on Target’s own employees, the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal reports. This joins another employee-only beta test currently underway that allows people to order products online and pick them up at the store.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on April 5, 2013 11:32 AM
Tide Pods seem to be very good for Procter & Gamble, but some observers believe they're killing the rest of the detergent industry.
Naturally, P&G seems quite happy with how the pre-measured Pods are gobbling up market share in the U.S. detergent business, with expected fiscal-year sales of $500 million this year meaning that Tide Pods are well on their way to becoming yet another of the dozens of $1-billion-plus brands in the CPG giant's portfolio.
Moreover, this is a segment that P&G invented, as AP has noted, taking "eight years, 450 product sketches, 6,000 consumer tests and hundreds of millions of dollars." Despite imitators, Tide essentially has the category all to itself so far, with a market share of about 75 percent of unit doses, drawing customers from rivals without the technology. No wonder P&G plans to take Pods to Europe in the coming months.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 4, 2013 11:38 AM
Spaniard Ferran Adria has been considered one of the world’s top chefs for decades, but it wasn’t clear what would happen with his famed gastronomic skills once his famed restaurant elBulli closed its doors in 2011.
Now all those hungry for such information have got the scoop: Adria has founded “the nonprofit elBulli Foundation, a culinary think tank and visitor center,” which is scheduled to open in 2015, according to Bloomberg.
"We want to promote innovation using food as our channel," said Adria—who's a consultant on food innovation to PepsiCo, which calls him "the world's greatest chef" and put his face on a limited-edition Pepsi can, below—to Bloomberg.
“We have two missions," he added. "One is to keep the elBulli legacy and the knowhow and the buildings. The second is to create the creators. I hope one or two of the 30 creative people we get each year will be the next generation of leaders of the culinary revolution.”Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 3, 2013 11:15 AM
Six European nations are challenging Google's privacy policies it emerged on Tuesday—just after the announcement that its privacy director was stepping down. Later this year, when Google Glass hits the market, privacy issues are already emerging as Google’s wearable tech, estimated retail price $1,500, brings seismic change to the scientific landscape and to what's possible with personal computing.
Google, on the defensive, argues that its already-filled "Glass Explorer" program of Google Glass public beta-testers "will give all of us the chance to be active participants in shaping the future of this technology, including its features and social norms."Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 1, 2013 11:01 AM
My Starbucks Idea is now five years-old and remains the gold standard of crowdsourced tip boxes that have actually worked for a brand and delivered ideas from customers (150,00 plus) with innovations (277) that have actually been implemented.
Customers today can order a “skinny” beverage and a cake pop, garner digital rewards for using their Starbucks Card and enjoy free Wi-Fi – all thanks to suggestions from fans.
“For five years, our passionate customers and partners have been sharing their ideas with us on My Starbucks Idea, and we have listened and acted upon many amazing innovations that we have received from this online community,” said Alex Wheeler, VP global digital marketing for Starbucks.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on March 20, 2013 06:16 PM
Nike introduced the FuelBand wristband in January 2012, and it has apparently sold well enough for the company to further invest in its growth as the device at the center of the connected universe it envisions. News on how Nike plans to boost its mobile/digital offering sets the stage for the company's quarterly earnings call on Thursday.
The athletic-wear giant's inaugural Nike Accelerator mobile development incubator, announced late last year, this week awarded $20,000 to 10 different startups that are building apps for its Nike+ products. The hope, CNET reports, is “to create a platform in much the same way that Apple has created a platform with iTunes and Microsoft with Windows.”
Hundreds of app ideas were proposed to Nike and its partner, TechStars, and the 10 that will receive funding as well as mentoring from Nike include “games that encourage users to exercise and a corporate wellness app that espouses healthy living habits,” CNET notes. The companies will work on their apps in Portland, Oregon, near Nike’s campus, and then pitch them to Nike bigwigs, venture capitalists and angel investors in June.Continue reading...