eBay pushes mobile commerce with WHERE purchase

Summary:Buying local deals using mobile devices is the ever-popular craze these days, and eBay isn't letting this opportunity slip by. The online auction and shopping site has acquired WHERE, a Boston-based location media and ad network company.

Buying local deals using mobile devices is the ever-popular craze these days, and eBay isn't letting this opportunity slip by. The online auction and shopping site has acquired WHERE, a Boston-based location media and ad network company.

Right now, the WHERE app serves as a tool to find and save local business listings with "personalized recommendations" in 100 U.S. cities. Additionally, WHERE is promising "exclusive" daily deals (similar to GroupOn, Living Social and ScoutMob) coming soon, thanks to an acquisition of its own after WHERE bought LocalGinger.

Although the deal won't close until later this quarter and terms haven't been revealed, there are a few details already in place. Specifically, eBay will integrate PayPal into the location-based WHERE app, which re-emphasizes eBay's determination to boost awareness of local merchants. Amanda Pires, PayPal’s senior director of global communications, brand and experiential marketing, stated in a blog post:

As John Donahoe said at analyst day, eBay Inc. is at the forefront of a new retail landscape, which is more convenient, more accessible, more local and – and more relevant to more consumers than ever before...

Since we don’t compete with our merchants, we are in a unique position to partner with retailers of all sizes and help people shop and pay anytime, anywhere and in any way they want.

This news comes on the heels of Wal-Mart's purchase of Kosmix, which will likely fill the void of a mobile e-commerce app for that mega-retailer. Mobile platforms are definitely where the e-commerce market is heading at a rapid speed with the proliferation and popularity of smartphone and tablet apps.

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Topics: Mobility, E-Commerce, Wi-Fi

About

Rachel King is a staff writer for CBS Interactive based in San Francisco, covering business and enterprise technology for ZDNet, CNET and SmartPlanet. She has previously worked for The Business Insider, FastCompany.com, CNN's San Francisco bureau and the U.S. Department of State. Rachel has also written for MainStreet.com, Irish Americ... Full Bio

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