Canada’s 500 fastest growing businesses, why it’s still too early to kill the headphone jack, and Amazon drivers are speaking out about harsh work conditions.

Hashtag Trending on Amazon Alexa Google Podcasts badge - 200 px wide

Trending on Twitter, Canadian Business released its list of Canada’s Fastest-Growing Companies for 2018. Number one on the list is furniture retailer Article. Over the past five years this firm has seen its sales grow 56,581 per cent over the last five years, to a revenue of more than $100 million in 2017. How has it done with? With Instagram ads, of course. Instead of going down the traditional path of working with retailers, this furniture maker sells directly to consumers. It markets using magazine-quality photos of its furniture on social media channels and its website. It encourages reviews from its customers. It’s all backed by a data engine and proprietary software that tracks click, shopping cart behaviour, and purchases. Make no mistake, this company – founded by four engineers – is a technology firm that just happens to sell furniture. Here’s the rest of the top five in order: Toronto-based EdenPark, Burlington, Ont.-based Prodigy GAme, Victoria, B.C.-based SendtoNews, and Toronto-based Maropost.

Trending on Reddit, bring back the headphone jack! In an appeal to smartphone makers that I can totally get behind, PC World asks for the return of the analog headphone jack until problems with USB-C headphones are solved. The problem is that currently there’s no agreed-upon standard for USB-C to analog adapters. So while one adapter might give you audio on Google’s Pixel 2 phone, it won’t work with Huawei’s P20 for example. This leaves consumers confused about what they need to buy when they lose the adapter that come sin the box. To make matters worse, Apple is not even including a dongle in its iPhone Ten-S boxes. Please, if you’re a smartphone maker, just include a normal headphone jack on your device. It’s worked well for the past decade. It will still work well for the next.

Trending on LinkedIn, Amazon delivery drivers describe a workplace of horrors in a new Business Insider report. To make good on Amazon’s promise of on-time deliveries and free shipping, many drivers say they felt pressured to drive dangerously fast, ignore stop signs, and pee into bottles instead of taking washroom breaks. Drivers also complain they’re often not paid for overtime, and sometimes not at all. Business Insider spoke to 31 current or recently employed drivers. Amazon responded saying that it doesn’t hire drivers directly, it hired third-party courier companies. Amazon said that you can’t characterize a network of thousands based on anecdotal evidence, but that small businesses sometimes need more support when scaling fast.

Share on LinkedIn Share with Google+