Morning Brief 10.1.19: Instagram ties push notifications to shopping, buy buttons

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Instagram is collaborating with about 20 brands to set up proactive notices about merchandise drops, and automatically launch in-app shopping.

Adidas, Huda Beauty and Chinatown Market are among the first brands, reports The Verge, adding the alerts will show up just before the merchandise launches. It's a more proactive method — users can set their own "alarms" on Instagram for merchandise announcements.

It's also part of Instagram's retail strategy to build personalized online malls, which includes new ways to pay for items without leaving the app.

Go the movies

Finding workable store formats for checkout-free technology is a challenge, and Amazon Go is scouting a wider range of locations.

The e-commerce giant is in talks to bring Go to Regal Cinemas and airports, reports Geekwire, adding Amazon is also approaching baseball stadiums.

The Boston Red Sox plan to test checkout-free technology from Standard Cognition at the franchise's new minor league ballpark in Worcester, Mass., with plans to expand to other facilities later.

Picking up retailers

Mizuho Bank has added 18,000 retail locations to its J-Coin digital currency platform through a collaboration with Japanese payments technology firm InComm.

J-Coin uses a QR-code app to support payments, transfers and other financial transactions, relying on a network of supporting banks and collaboration deals with Alipay and UnionPay to enable payments for Chinese travelers.

InComm will add a range of pharmacies, supermarkets and discount stores, reports Finextra.

Tax rules

France has released its 2020 finance bill, which includes a requirement that all businesses support electronic invoices.

French authorities want access to billing data in line with other EU countries, reports KPMG, adding it's part of an international trend to improve data management for value added taxes.

VATs are incremental taxes based on changes in the value of a good or service, and are becoming more complicated as e-commerce expands, since not all countries collect value added taxes, and some calculate the tax differently.

Pay at the window

A staffer at an Ohio Burger King was reportedly caught using a smartphone to take photos of debit cards in the drive-through window.

A consumer saw the employee snap photos of her payment card and notified the store manager after quarreling with the employee.

The store manager confiscated the phone and discovered numerous photos of other payment cards, reports Fox News. The restaurant notified law enforcement and turned the phone over to police.

From the web

Cryptocurrency Exchanges Including Coinbase Disclose Ratings of Digital Assets
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL | Mon September 30, 2019
The U.S.’s biggest cryptocurrency exchanges have developed a system to rate which digital assets are probably securities that can’t be traded on their venues—and which likely can. The system comes as the industry continues to face skepticism from regulators about how it protects investors and complies with federal laws, including anti-money-laundering provisions.

What Google’s ‘Quantum Supremacy’ Means for the Future of Cryptocurrency
COINDESK | Mon September 30, 2019
Tech giant Google claims to have achieved “quantum supremacy,” meaning it has built a quantum computer able to solve formerly impossible mathematical calculations. If proven true, this marks a major milestone in the development of quantum computers and possibly, the demise of blockchain technology as we know it today.

California BitLicense Exposes Fault Lines Among Cryptocurrency Advocates
FORBES | Mon September 30, 2019
There is a rift emerging in the crypto sector. California’s AB 1489 (the “CA Act”) which is modeled on the Uniform Law Commission’s (ULC’s) Uniform Regulation of Virtual Currency Businesses Act (the “Model Act”) seeks to regulate companies engaged in virtual currency business activity. Not everyone is on board.

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