Specialty Retail
Top stories summarized by our editors
9/19/2017

The new payment program designed to come as part of Apple's iMessage program will not be released with iOS 11, due to be rolled out today. The new operating system will include significant updates to the App Store with a redesigned platform that heavily features games.

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Reuters, TechCrunch
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Apple, operating system
9/19/2017

Sprint made a major subscriber power play by offering new and existing customers a new iPhone 8 with the trade-in of an iPhone 7, Samsung Galaxy S8 or Samsung Note8. Even customers with older iPhones or other competitor models can get half-off iPhone 8 price deals.

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Bloomberg
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Samsung, Sprint, iPhones, Galaxy
9/19/2017

August has rolled out updates to its smart lock for a new Pro version that supports Z-Wave Plus and offers Wi-Fi, HomeKit and Bluetooth support. The company has also announced another compatible product, the Doorbell Cam Pro, which allows users to monitor their front doors via webcam.

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TechCrunch
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Z-Wave, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
9/19/2017

Venture capital firm Shasta Ventures is offering a new fund designed to assist in the development of augmented reality. The fund will provide $100,000 to eligible companies in the AR development field.

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TechCrunch
9/19/2017

PlayerUnknown's "Battlegrounds" just overtook "Dota 2's" number of online players with 1,342,857 players online at the same time. The game tweeted the announcement Saturday.

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The Verge
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Twitter
9/18/2017

Walmart will build a modern new headquarters on 350 acres in its hometown of Bentonville, Ark., to replace more than 20 spread-out buildings that were added as the retailer expanded into a company with 1.5 million US employees, and to help position the retailer to better serve a "digitally native work force," the company said Friday. The announcement came on the heels of Seattle-based Amazon's news that it would seek a different city for a second North American headquarters.

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Walmart, Amazon, North American
9/18/2017

Amazon's purchase of Whole Foods Market will spur more of the grocer's shoppers to sign up for the online retail giant's Prime membership program, according to Morgan Stanley Analyst Brian Nowak. About 38% of Whole Foods' shoppers are not Amazon Prime members, but half of those 5 million households are expected to become Prime members by 2019, he said.

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CNBC
9/18/2017

The iPhone X could act as the centerpiece for Apple offerings, including smart home and artificial intelligence devices, such as Siri. This is especially true as Apple consumers tend to remain loyal to the brand despite higher prices, John Laposky writes.

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TWICE
9/18/2017

Samsung's Galaxy Note8 has hit retail shelves in stores in the US, UK and South Korea. The Note8 is available through Samsung, Target, Walmart and Best Buy for about $930.

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CNET
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Samsung, Best Buy, Walmart, Target
9/18/2017

German discount grocer Lidl has purchased land in the San Antonio, Texas, market that indicates the retailer will expand in an area where rival H-E-B has plans to open a new store in November, according to property records. Lidl's San Antonio expansion would add to its presence in the state, which also includes planned stores in Houston and Dallas-Fort Worth.

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Lidl, H-E-B