Ford has announced plans to bring its self-driving delivery cars to the streets of Miami, Amazon is strengthening its smart home lineup with the acquisition of a smart doorbell startup, and the 2018 Canadian Federal Budget has its fair share of tech-related initiatives.

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From LinkedIn – Ford is making a big bet on the city of Miami, announcing this week that it is currently testing its autonomous cars for a future ride-hailing and delivery business in the city. Ford’s plan for the time being centers around two types of autonomous cars, its blue and white research vehicles created by a self-driving startup backed by Ford called Argo, and self-driving delivery cars that Ford most recently deployed in Ann Arbor, Michigan in partnership with Dominos Pizzas. Currently the research vehicles are already out on the streets of Miami in autonomous mode collecting mapping data. The delivery vehicles are doing the same, but are still operated by a human driver. This is just the beginning of Ford’s long term plans for Miami. It is also building a service center for its autonomous vehicles that will serve as a home base, and Miami will be the testbed for its upcoming Transportation Mobility Cloud, an open-sourced platform for cities and transit partners like Lyft and Postmates.

From Google Trends – Amazon continues to show that it is serious about smart doorbell technology, announcing that it has acquired a startup called Ring Inc. for about 1 billion dollars. This acquisition will add to Amazon’s array of smart home devices centered around its smart-assistant Alexa. Last year, Amazon revealed Amazon Key, a new service that incorporates a smart lock so that Amazon delivery drivers can open your front door and deposit packages directly in your home in an effort to decrease package thefts from doorsteps. That initiative was met with a ton of skepticism, but with Ring’s smart doorbell and security cameras that connect via your smartphone or computer on board, the Amazon Key idea should be more palatable.

And from Twitter – The 2018 Federal Budget was unveiled this week, and as expected, it contained quite a few tech-related initiatives. This big reveal is Canada’s $750 million investment into cyber security, which includes a new Canadian Centre for Cyber Security that accomplishes things like bringing all federal operational cyber expertise across the government under one roof and provide Canadian citizens and businesses with a clear and trusted place for cyber security information. Other tech-related initiatives include a two billion dollar investment for Shared Services Canada, more than 400 million to fix the Phoenix payroll systems and another 16 million to find alternatives, plus funding for a big data strategy and to fixing both the IT skills gap and gender disparity.

That’s what’s trending today. Hashtag Trending is produced by IT World Canada. Today’s episode is sponsored by Cogeco Peer 1, the company that enables businesses to unlock their IT potential. Learn more at

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