Hashtag Trending – Ikea closes pick-up and order stores, Google and its cookies, new facial-recognition tech

In today’s episode, we talk about Ikea Canada closing its pick up and order stores, Google cutting web cookies, and the U.S. military’s plans to build long-range facial recognition technology.

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Citing “urbanisation, technology and digitalisation” Ikea Canada says its pick-up and order stores in Ontario are closing up shop. This is going to impact stores in Kitchener, London, Windsor, St. Catharines, and Whitby starting Jan. 29, along with 150 employees. The move comes five years after Ikea Canada launched the pick-up and order stores as part of a global pilot to learn about how customers respond to new retail formats. The company says it will work with affected employees to find them the “best option” elsewhere within the company.

Google says that within two years, it wants to block one of the most common ways business track people online in its Chrome browser. The tech giant says it’s restricting advertising software companies and other organizations from connecting their browser cookies to websites they do not operate. Apple made a similar move in 2017 in its Safari browser. Chrome, however, has a significantly larger global market share, 64 per cent greater to be exact, according to tracking company statcounter.

And lastly, a story about the U.S. military developing facial recognition tech that reads heat emitted by faces is gaining traction on Twitter. The tech would work in the dark and across long distances, according to contracts posted on a U.S. federal spending database. Traditional facial recognition tech often relies on images generated by standard cameras, such as those found in CCTV networks and your smartphone. The Department of Defence wants the tech to be incorporated into a device that is small enough to be carried by a single person.

That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now. Hashtag Trending is a part of the ITWC Podcast network. Add us to your Alexa Flash Briefing or your Google Home daily briefing.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada
Alex Coop
Alex Coophttp://www.itwc.ca
Former Editorial Director for IT World Canada and its sister publications.

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