eBay’s Innovation and New Ventures group focuses on the future of commerce in wearables

eBay is working at bringing commerce to all screens, particularly wearables. Part of eBay’s rise in the past 5 years

eBay is working at bringing commerce to all screens, particularly wearables.

Part of eBay’s rise in the past 5 years comes from the notion of offering online shopping through any smart device with a screen. Since the release of the first iPhone, eBay and its subsidiaries such as PayPal, have been working at making our personal computing devices shopping and payment friendly. This can be seen in new offerings with Samsung and its new secure fingerprint scanner, and Gear2 smartwatch.

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eBay has also constructed a group of developers and engineers to comprise its “Innovation and New Ventures group”, whose main goal is to focus on bringing eBay with its array of products like the marketplace, enterprise business, and PayPal across any and all capable and connected devices.

“We’re not focused on short-term revenue, we’re trying to see what the future looks like,” stated the head of the Innovation and New Ventures group Steve Yankovich.

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Yankovich, in an interview with TechCrunch, explained that he sees a future abundant with smart devices, beyond smartphones and tablets. Smart devices that use personalization, historical behavior, and sensors to create frictionless payments. Yankovich has coined such payment abilities as Zero Effort Commerce (ZEC). ZEC is a future of automatic and intelligent payments placed by smart devices with little to no effort from the customer.

“For example, a really smart digital personal assistant would take advantage of ZEC. I have a friend who has a personal assistant who keeps track of his needs. His personal assistant replaces ceiling fan light bulbs, replaces shirts that she noted show wear, constantly fills the fridge, changes the wiper blades in cars, and on and on. In this person’s world everything he needs and wants automatically happens. We can work towards building a virtual personal assistant that uses personalization, historical behavior and the coming sensors of the connected home and life around us to do much the same thing but for all of us,” added Yankovich.

While eBay and its subsidiaries have previously not been seen as strong innovators in the tech arena, the firm has begun making some daring decisions with acquisitions, expansion, and the setting up of the Innovation and New Ventures group. These moves show eBay and PayPal planning on being more than a marketplace and payment solution but on the forefront of innovation, like Google, Apple, and Amazon.


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