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Amazon Is Developing Hand-Scanning Technology…And Other Small Business Tech News

By January 30, 2020January 31st, 2020No Comments

(This post originally appeared on Forbes)

Here are five things in technology that happened this past week and how they affect your business. Did you miss them?

1 — Amazon is reportedly developing hand-scanning technology.

The Wall Street Journal reported this past week that Inc. is developing point of sale technology that would allow customers to have their hands scanned in order to make a payment. Using the hand-scanning technology, customers would no longer need to hand over an actual card in order to pay for their merchandise purchased at brick-and-mortar locations. With the developing technology, users would be able to link their handprint to a card prior to use. Amazon is collaborating with Visa Inc. as well as Mastercard Inc. regarding the terminals. (Source: Silicon Angle)

Why this is important for your business:

Finger prints, retina scans, embedded chips. Now hand scans. Biometrics are coming into the mainstream and the security advantages of these types of access methods are significantly greater than what’s been used in the past. My expectation is that your password will soon be as old fashioned as the telegram by the end of the decade, so be prepared to consider these new security changes in your business over the next few years.

2 — DoorDash and Grubhub were skewered by small restaurants for posting menus without permission.

Grubhub, Postmates, and DoorDash have come under fire for putting restaurants on their websites and apps without the permission of restaurant owners. In many cases, these third-party delivery services are taking orders from customers, then calling or going to the restaurant and ordering on the customer’s behalf. This process often creates problems when drivers arrive at a restaurant to pick up an order that was never communicated to the restaurant’s kitchen. Restaurants have also reported inconsistent prices listed on these websites as compared to the actual restaurant. (Source: Fox Business)

Why this is important for your business:

Online delivery firms have used mobile and cloud technologies to create a multi-billion dollar industry. Do you care that these firms are listing your restaurant without your permission? You don’t if you’re still selling products at your desired price. But if these services are creating productivity issues or disrupting your flow then you’ll need to take steps to resolve.

3 — AI startups raised $18.5 billion in 2019, setting a new funding record.

Data collected by the National Venture Capital Association showed that $18.457 billion was raised by 1,356 AI-focused companies in the U.S. during 2019, despite collective U.S. venture capital funding showing a decline during that time. According to the data, facial recognition, finance, drug research, and autonomous driving appeared to have some of the highest investments, while the amount of AI unicorn startups similarly went up. (Source: Venture Beat)

Why this is important for your business:

Follow the money, right? If almost $19 billion was invested in artificial intelligence in the past year, both businesses and consumers can expect to see a lot of this research and development turning into real life technologies in the coming year.

4 — Stasher, the luggage storage app for travelers, raised $2.5M additional funding.

Luggage storage app—Stasher—raised $2.5 million in additional funding. Stasher—which was launched in 2015—connects vacation rental guests, event attendees, and travelers with local hotels and shops that agree to store their luggage for either short-term or medium-term. Travelers can find locations—called StasherPoints—through Stasher’s app and marketplace. Each booking includes insurance, covering damage, loss, and theft. (Source: TechCrunch)

Why this is important for your business:

The idea behind Stasher is to help provide a solution to carrying around luggage between hotel check-in or check-out and sightseeing. It’s a great idea and one that’s likely to become commonplace in the next few years. If you’re a business traveler, having a resource to “stash” your luggage for a few days between appointments could be a big time saver.

5— Quantify joined forces with Shopify to guarantee e-commerce success for online entrepreneurs.

This past week, Qwantify, Inc. made the announcement that they have opened their Exclusive Partner Program. The new program is designed to provide support to entrepreneurs who operate online and guide them to success in a fast-growing e-commerce industry that is topping $500+ billion. (Source: AIThority)

Why this is important for your business:

According to the company, the partner program will allow entrepreneurs to find their start in the e-commerce world in an affordable way through guaranteed revenue of $10K per month at a minimum. Although Qwantify reported that they still have a waitlist of entrepreneurs, the goal is to allow more and more to come on board each month.

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