Groupon and sign partnership with mobile shopping app Ibotta (GRPN)

Groupon Workers OfficeScott Olson/Getty Images

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Groupon and have signed on to partner with mobile shopping app Ibotta, reports Internet Retailer.

Ibotta is a cashback platform that rewards shoppers when they make purchases in partnered retailers’ brick-and-mortar stores. This new partnership extends its reach to the e-commerce sphere by allowing Groupon and to post products on Ibotta’s platform. The agreement should heighten visibility for both companies, while pushing Ibotta into e-commerce as a mobile retail app referral channel.

Ibotta’s massive user base could help drive more traffic to Groupon’s and’s mobile apps. Ibotta boasts nearly 12 million monthly active users (MAU) on its popular mobile app. This will place products from Groupon and in front of a massive audience that already trusts the Ibotta platform. Additionally, an incentive to receive 5% cash back from these companies via Ibotta could more easily convert users. In fact, in initial beta testing of this new app-to-app connection feature, the Ibotta partnership resulted in a 21% conversion rate, on average.

A partnership with Ibotta comes at a time when both Groupon and are going through significant changes. Most notably, was acquired just a few weeks ago by Walmart for $3 billion, in the largest e-commerce acquisition to date. Meanwhile, Groupon has been dealing with international closures and multiple rounds of employee layoffs. Both companies are facing steep competition in their respective arenas, resulting in low engagement and retention. Leveraging Ibotta’s millions of users could help drive much-needed brand awareness and sales. We expect Ibotta to become a bigger resource for online retailers looking to drive up digital engagement.

Ibotta can provide further value to e-tailers by introducing new tools. Moving past simple app-to-app connection, one way for Ibotta to help retailers even further would be to incorporate other digital tools like mobile coupons and personalized deal recommendations to ensure future engagement, and encourage more retailers to sign on to its platform.

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Rival video platforms threw shade at the #YouTubeIsOverParty drama


LOS ANGELES — Digital video platforms Vimeo and Vidme are throwing some timely  shade at YouTube.

On Friday — one day after many outraged creators declared their disdain for YouTube’s not-so-new “advertiser-friendly guidelines — Vidme and Vimeo made public efforts to underscore just how different they are from the competitor and Google-owned giant.

Vimeo, a division of IAC which launched in 2004, posted a blog dedicated to “the best of advertiser-unfriendly videos.”

In it, Vimeo’s head of content distribution Peter Gerard put together some of the best Staff Picks available on the platform. Read more…

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Facebook is testing a new feature to encourage conversations


Facebook really, really wants you to talk to your friends.

The company is testing a new feature — “What friends are talking about” — in some News FeedsMashable spotted it Friday in the Android version of Facebook’s mobile app, though it’s possible other users on different platforms may have seen it earlier.

The feature collects posts from your friends in a special section of your News Feed, just a little bit down from the top, and highlights how many comments the content received from other people. It’s roughly the size of one image post in your News Feed, meaning you get a little more bang for your buck.  Read more…

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This is how Taco Bell, Starbucks, and other fast-food chains are using mobile to boost order values

BII Mobile Order Ahead ForecastBI Intelligence

Mobile has gained legitimacy as a commerce channel. Millions of retail locations in the US now accept mobile in-store payments and are also developing e-commerce businesses that support mobile payment options in apps and on mobile websites.

However, quick-service restaurants (QSRs) — also known as fast-casual restaurants — have been turning to mobile order-ahead apps to extract higher sales, intensify customer loyalty, and heighten foot traffic.

Mobile order-ahead refers to a consumer-facing mobile payment platform that allows customers to order food remotely, pay for the items on their phone, and pick up their order at a specific restaurant location.

Leading QSRs in the US are beginning to adopt these platforms at an accelerated pace and are benefiting from them. Taco Bell sees 30% higher average order values on mobile compared to in-store, and Starbucks’ Mobile Order & Pay already represents 10% of total transactions at high-volume stores, directly contributing to increased company sales.

Mobile order-ahead is still in its early days, but will be a $38 billion industry by 2020, accounting for 10.7% of total QSR industry sales. This will be driven by full adoption among the top QSRs in the US, the growth of mobile commerce, QSR adoption through aggregators like Grubhub, loyalty programs, higher average order values, and new buy buttons.

In BI Intelligence’s 2016 Mobile Order-Ahead Report, we profile the companies that have proved the mobile order-ahead concept and analyze the trends contributing to this new industry’s growth.

Here are some key takeaways from the report:

  • Mobile order-ahead apps — platforms that enable consumers to remotely purchase menu items for in-store restaurant pickup — are on the rise among quick-service restaurants (QSRs). We expect sales on these platforms to reach $38 billion by 2020, representing a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 57%.
  • Mobile order-ahead will ultimately have an additive effect on the QSR industry. Mobile ordering platforms have been proven to intensify customer loyalty, increase purchase frequency, and lift average ticket sizes through order customization and easier checkout options. This means that mobile ordering is not a simple substitution for in-store purchasing, but a channel that can enhance the lifetime value of QSR customers. This makes mobile order-ahead a critical channel contributing to the growth of the QSR industry.
  • Alternative commerce solutions will help propel mobile ordering. Aggregators like Grubhub will onboard smaller fast-casual restaurants into the mobile ecosystem by offering them an existing app to integrate into, lowering the upfront costs of creating a mobile channel of their own. And in-store self-service kiosks will help popularize remote ordering and accustom users to less traditional forms of payment that don’t require a cash register. 

In full, the report: 

  • Forecasts the growth of the mobile order-ahead industry in the US from 2015 to 2020, including its share of total QSR sales.
  • Profiles brands that are leading the migration to mobile ordering. 
  • Examines the alternative commerce solutions that could help popularize mobile order-ahead.
  • Explains the risks and drawbacks to launching a mobile commerce platform.
  • Assesses the ways both large and small brands can create a mobile order-ahead platform.
  • Determines which types of fast-casual chains are in the best position to benefit from mobile order-ahead.

Companies mentioned in the report include: Taco Bell, Starbucks, Dunkin’ Donuts, Panera Bread, Heartland Payment Systems, Domino’s, Chipotle, McDonald’s, California Pizza Kitchen, Panda Express, Papa John’s, Subway, PayPal, Klarna, Apple

Interested in getting the full report? Here are two ways to access it:

  1. Subscribe to an All-Access pass to BI Intelligence and gain immediate access to this report and over 100 other expertly researched reports. As an added bonus, you’ll also gain access to all future reports and daily newsletters to ensure you stay ahead of the curve and benefit personally and professionally. >> Learn More Now
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Apple activates Twitter account days before iPhone 7 event


Apple and Twitter are up to something. 

On Friday, the iPhone maker brought its Twitter account back to life. The @Apple account, which has been registered since 2011, now has an Apple logo instead of the generic egg avatar. It also features a blue checkmark, meaning it’s really Apple. 

This isn’t Apple’s first verified account on Twitter. In 2009, the company ran five popular iTunes accounts. In 2011, Apple launched @AppStore as a way to promote new apps. Now, Apple also runs @AppleSupport, @AppleMusic and @AppleNews. 

Even though Apple did not create @AppleSupport until March, Apple has long supported its product users on Twitter.  Read more…

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Samsung will replace more than 2.5 million Galaxy Note7 devices


With at least 35 cases of Samsung’s new Galaxy Note7 catching fire while charging, Samsung has halted further shipments of its devices. 

The South Korean company will replace the phones that have already been sold, were at retailers and were in transit, Samsung said Friday. Future shipments are delayed.  

How much will the ordeal cost the conglomerate? 

It’s difficult to peg given the global scale, and the greater cost may come from damage to its reputation. Indeed, while other companies, like Apple, have issued their own recalls, Samsung has not faced such burdens, especially one that is so life-threatening.  Read more…

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Samsung’s Galaxy Note7 debacle is a gift to Apple


Samsung’s glorious Galaxy Note7 mission has just imploded, almost as spectacularly as SpaceX’s Facebook satellite-carrying rocket did on the launch pad just hours before.

SpaceX will mop up and launch again. Samsung’s Galaxy Note7 might not be so lucky.

The 5.7-inch Galaxy Note7 is one of the best-reviewed products and, perhaps, one of the top smartphones of the past year, but all that may be for naught. After dozens of reports of Galaxy Note7’s exploding while charging, Samsung on Friday made the dramatic decision to push pause on all sales of the Galaxy Note7. They have yet to issue a full recall, but are working on a replacement policy for the U.S. market, which Samsung plans to announce sometime on Friday. Read more…

More about Samsung, Galaxy Note7, Galaxy Note 7, Tech, and Gadgets


‘Overwatch’ season 2 is live for all players with new map and hero changes


UPDATE: Sept. 2, 2016, 1:27 p.m. EDT Patch 1.3 is also live on PS4. It was previously only live on PC and Xbox One.

Overwatch launched into its second competitive season Thursday night with patch 1.3, bringing with it the new map Eichenwalde and updates to a handful of heroes. 

New features

The new hybrid map Eichenwalde is set in a German village and castle, tasking attacking players with capturing a point and escorting a payload up into the castle while defenders try to stop them. The map was first revealed at Gamescom in August and has been available to play on the public test realm for a week and a half. Read more…

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How much does the iPhone’s headphone jack matter to you?


Can you live without a headphone jack? For millions of iPhone owners, they’re about to find out, assuming reports (and there are many) that the iPhone 7 will be the first smartphone from Apple to do away with the venerable audio port. Apple’s fall event is less than a week away, and it’s of course the topic of our weekly MashTalk podcast.

It all comes down to what Apple does. There’s still a chance it won’t kill the iPhone headphone jack, but assuming it does, what will be in the box? Wireless headphones? Lightning headphones? Regular headphones with a dongle? Just a dongle? We sort out the possibilities and more in this episode, where we’re joined by special guest Mashable Creative Producer Sam Sheffer. Read more…

More about Podcast, Mashtalk, Iphone 7, Iphone, and Apple


Apple writes love letter to ride-hailing apps and video calling


Watch out, developers. Apple is more aggressively calling out the good and the bad of the App Store.

On Thursday, Apple declared it will begin removing unused, non-functioning or outdated apps via a blog post titled “App Store Improvements.” The reckoning begins Sept. 7, the same day as its keynote event where the company is expected to announce the next-generation iPhone. 

Developers will be contacted before any app is removed, and they have 30 days to make any changes — unless the app crashes immediately. Apple advised that developers look at the latest version of its review guidelines.  Read more…

More about Video Calling, Ride Hailing Apps, Siri, Uber, and Apple


Business leaders explain why Florida is not what you think



Fueled by a highly-skilled workforce of 9.7+ million and one of the nation’s most business-friendly environments, Florida offers boundless opportunities to innovate and grow. Discover what a future in Florida means for your business.

Real talk: What comes to mind when someone suggests they’re thinking about starting a business in Florida?

Is it the gorgeous beaches, vibrant vacation spots and relaxed pace of life that you first picture when considering this southern state? That makes sense. Florida’s got those in spades. But what about a thriving tech industry, a competitive talent pool and global leaders in aerospace, manufacturing and cleantech? Bet you didn’t realize Florida has that too. Read more…

More about Careers, Small Business, Talent, Business, and Florida


White nationalist Twitter has exploded since 2014


White nationalists have become a dominant force on Twitter in the past two years, according to a new study published Thursday by George Washington University. 

White nationalist movements have grown their Twitter adherents by around 600 percent since 2012 and about 300 percent since 2014, swelling in size from 6,567 white nationalists in 2014 to 25,406 white nationalists as of the study’s publication.

White nationalism — often referred to under the umbrella of the alt-right movement — has become a dominant force in mainstream United States politics during the 2016 presidential election.  Read more…

More about Social Media, Immigration, Election 2016, President, and Gop


Here’s the jobs report number that could send markets into a frenzy (SPX, SPY, DJI, IXIC, TLT, TLO, USD, DXY, GLD)

traders busy frantic questionsScott Olson / Staff / Getty Images

The focus of Friday’s jobs report is on what it means for the Federal Reserve’s next move. 

Economists estimate that the Department of Labor will report the US economy added 180,000 jobs in August, according to Bloomberg. 

Following two solid months of job gains, a third strong month is believed by some to be sufficient to move the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates at its meeting later in September. 

On Thursday, Fed fund futures reflected a 32% chance of a rate hike in September, and a 59% chance in December, according to Bloomberg. 

Most things I’ve read say a 225k+ print locks in a hike and should move fed futures,” said Dave Lutz, head of ETFs at JonesTrading, in a note, with his emphasis.

He noted Goldman’s forecast for 165,000, which is lower than consensus. That matters, Lutz said, because “they have more peeps now working in DC than anyone else” and their economists should have an edge.

To be sure, and as Business Insider’s Myles Udland highlighted before, only a few people including the president and Treasury secretary can see the jobs report before it’s released.

Lutz expects that the electronic algo traders would sell treasuries and gold on a huge jobs-report beat. Stocks may sell off quickly and then recover, although their move is still a coin flip.

NOW WATCH: Goldman Sachs’ HR chief explains what she looks for in a cover letter


Join Mashable and Snaphappen for a Snapchat Meetup in London


Do you use Snapchat? Do you like cereal? Do you live in London? If you said yes to all three of those things, you’re in luck — keep reading.

We’re excited to announce that we’ve partnered with Snaphappen — the first (unofficial) Snapchat conference — which takes place on Thursday, Sept. 22 in the Magic Roundabout in London. Snaphappen is a day chock-full of Snapchat-centric panels and workshops. Tickets to the event can be purchased here.

Following Snaphappen is the Ghosties, the first (unofficial) Snapchat awards showMashable is presenting an award for best collaborative Snapchat Story, so be sure to enter by uploading your submission to YouTube and sending it to There’s a handful of other categories as well, like best Snapchat artist and best newcomer, and you should vote for your favorites right here. Read more…

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