In today’s top news, Amazon is in talks to acquire self-driving startup Zoox, Walmart is partnering with ThredUp to sell pre-owned clothes and Google Assistant is piloting a new feature that will allow users to make payments using their voice.
Amazon is in talks to buy self-driving car startup Zoox, in a move that would advance the eCommerce giant’s reach in autonomous vehicle technology. In a 2018 funding round, Zoox was valued at $3.2 billion, but a sale now would likely reflect a decreased valuation.
Walmart is joining forces with resale startup ThredUp, after almost a year of negotiations. Shoppers on the Walmart website will be able to peruse thousands of pre-owned items for women and children and get free shipping from Walmart with a minimum order of $35 or more.
Users of the Google Assistant Voice Match feature will soon be able to make payments for goods and services using only their voice. The new feature is currently being tested as part of a pilot program and is intended to make purchases more secure when people use smart speakers and displays.
Facebook has a new app called CatchUp, which the company said it hopes will make audio-only phone calls easier. The idea, Facebook said, is to help address one of the main reasons people don’t make phone calls much anymore: they never know when someone else is available and don’t want to be intrusive. The new app will flag which users are currently available to chat.
Social distancing mandates are pushing consumers to embrace digital-first banking services, creating opportunity for fraudsters to bury their scams across multiple channels. In this month’s FI Fraud Decisioning Playbook, Uma Wilson, executive vice president and director of treasury management, at UMB Bank, discusses how behavioral analysis and real-time mobile alerts can help FIs build more comprehensive customer profiles to catch and prevent fraudulent activity.
Money makes the world go round, they say, and the way the money gets around is increasingly digital-first. Does that spell trouble for traditional banks, and will digital-mostly challengers eat their lunch? Maybe not, according to five top execs from NCR, KeyBank, Mastercard, HMBradley and Truist. As they told Karen Webster in a wide-ranging discussion on how banks and challengers are breaking out their digital-first best.
Will the U.S. government pay American companies to “near shore” supply chains, incentivizing a pivot away from China? That’s the question some are asking after comments chief White House Economic Advisor Larry Kudlow made on Fox Business on Tuesday, May 26.