Connected economy: Uber is getting closer to the super app
Today, in the connected economy, Uber is taking another step towards becoming a super app by allowing people to book flights, train tickets, rental cars and hotel rooms. Additionally, Google is letting travelers use Maps to find the cheapest toll routes, IBM is launching real-time artificial intelligence (AI) for transaction processing, and FIS is working with Circle to help businesses accept USD Coin.
Uber adds booking for flights, trains and hotels
Uber is offering new travel booking options for customers in the UK as part of a strategic push to become a national and international travel super app. The US mobility giant has started adding the ability to book flights, train tickets, hotel rooms and car rentals, with the UK serving as a pilot for a larger rollout. CEO Dara Khosrowshahi began hinting at the decision to make Uber a super app when he took over the tech giant in 2018, although the pandemic put those plans on hold.
Google Maps gets a toll update
Google has made Google Maps easier to use with a series of feature updates, including details on toll prices. Drivers who want to take a toll-free ride can still use Maps to find these routes. Users simply tap the three dots in the upper right corner of the directions in Maps to see their route options and choose “Avoid Tolls”.
IBM launches real-time AI for transaction processing
IBM launched what it called the next-generation system that uses a built-in AI accelerator to detect and prevent fraud. Dubbed IBM z16, the feature was created to allow customers to analyze credit card, health and financial transactions in real time, while protecting against threats that could break encryption technologies.
FIS and Circle Partner to Offer USDC Acceptance
FinTech FIS said its Worldpay business will be the first merchant acquirer in the world to give merchants the ability to receive USD Coin (USDC) settlements. This is done through a partnership with Circle, a FinTech that is the sole issuer of USDC. FIS said this partnership will help native and traditional cryptocurrency businesses build settlement and cash strategies that blend with their preferred currency for doing business.
i2c and PingPong team up for cross-border e-commerce
Digital payment and banking company i2c is collaborating with Chinese FinTech unicorn PingPong to offer cross-border e-commerce payment solutions to business owners. The partnership will involve PingPong using i2c’s Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform to bring its trade credit services to new regions, particularly Europe and Hong Kong SAR. The two companies said it would give merchants access to instant payments and lower transaction fees.
LocoNav and Locus Partner to Automate Supply Chains
Two Indian companies – fleet technology company LocoNav and last-mile solutions provider Locus – have launched a partnership to automate supply chain operations. Locus uses machine learning, deep technology and proprietary algorithms to address complex last mile issues, such as traffic delays, accidents or theft, as well as excessive fuel consumption resulting from idling or excessive speed – all of which can have a negative effect on a delivery business.