Walmart is leveraging the popularity of buy online, pick up in store, providing the convenience of online ordering while eliminating the wait time and cost associated with shipping. The retailer also offers free pickup at any FedEx Office location, mobile check-in to have orders ready when a customer arrives and, at many locations, grocery pickup and loading.
Pokemon Go creator Niantic and chipmaker Qualcomm are partnering on a reference design for augmented reality glasses that will integrate software, hardware and cloud capabilities. The project will benefit location-based and AR apps.
Zenia has released a mobile app that taps artificial intelligence to help yogis by assessing their poses, providing feedback and tracking progression of yoga practices. The app's developers hope the technology can be expanded to other fitness endeavors, including running, weightlifting and tennis.
ALDI is fast approaching its goal of opening 2,500 stores in the US by 2022, which would make it the third-largest grocer in America. The retailer has remodeled stores to expand its produce and fresh food sections, boosting shopper traffic by 30% to 40%, according to ALDI's Scott Patton.
Kraft Heinz is debuting a white cheddar flavor for Planters Cheez Balls, while Butterball is adding Premium Snacks in three varieties featuring turkey slices and dried fruit to its on-the-go category. Other launches include General Mills joining with Mars for a Starburst line of Yoplait yogurt, Sara Lee's three frozen desserts for the holidays and a new flavor of PepsiCo's Naked Juice: Tropical Guava.
Hestan's new, 10-piece CopperBond collection of pots and pans offers a modern take on traditional copper cookware by including a magnetic, wrap-around stainless steel base for better induction, cleaning and durability. The set retails for about $2,000.
Pet supplement company RestoraPet sells a blend of flavored antioxidants that improves age-related quality of life for older dogs, cats and horses. Founder and CEO Brian Larsen knows the pain of losing a pet and leads his business with a mission to help pet owners, backed by financing from fellow dog lover Morton Meyerson.
National Guardsman Dan Brissey met his feline friend Sully during his fourth tour in Afghanistan and he has raised more than $10,000 to bring the orange cat home to Seaford, Del., next month. Brissey is working with Nowzad, an animal rescue group in Afghanistan that has helped around 1,000 soldiers take pets home since 2007.
Nearly half of chefs and restaurateurs surveyed recently see vegan desserts as a hot growth area for 2020 and plant-based sweet treats from food makers are on the rise. Tofurky has expanded into vegan cheesecake, Oatly is building on the popularity of plant-based ice cream and Simple VGN offers vegan baking mixes.
A diverse group of about 21 million live-streaming influencers fueled more than $4 billion in online sales in China last year. Influencers, called key opinion leaders, make spots that hark back to the infomercials that used to be popular in the US, and they work to help get consumers over their lack of trust, Mark Tanner of marketing-research firm China Skinny said.
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