The Download: India’s supply apps, and covid vaccines for younger kids

From 7 a.m. till effectively previous nightfall, seven days every week, N. Sudhakar sits behind the counter of his hole-in-the wall grocery retailer within the south Indian metropolis of Bangalore. Packed flooring to ceiling with all the pieces from 20-kilogram sacks of rice to one-rupee ($.01) shampoo sachets, this one-stop store provides a lot of the each day wants for a lot of within the neighborhood. It’s a carbon copy of the roughly 12 million family-run “kiranas” discovered on virtually each avenue nook in India.

The store is on a busy avenue within the Whitefield district, previously a quiet suburb however now a significant hub for town’s booming IT business. Apartment blocks loom behind his store, housing lots of of staff employed within the tech parks that dominate the encircling space.

These days, the identical know-how business that helped Sudhakar’s enterprise thrive is presenting shops like his with a brand new problem. Across the highway, a gentle stream of supply drivers line as much as seize groceries from a “darkish retailer”—a mini-warehouse situated within the coronary heart of town and constructed to allow ultra-fast deliveries run by Dunzo, a Bangalore-based startup.

In India’s megacities, years of aggressive advertising and marketing, steep reductions from e-commerce gamers like Amazon and home-grown Flipkart, and a heavy dose of covid lockdowns have gotten the city center class hooked on on-line purchasing. These buyers make up a fraction of the inhabitants, however their spending energy is appreciable, and in additional prosperous pockets of massive cities, the battle for India’s avenue nook is effectively underway. Read the full story.

—Edd Gent

The must-reads

I’ve combed the web to search out you immediately’s most enjoyable/necessary/scary/fascinating tales about know-how.

1 US kids below 5 are eligible for covid vaccines from immediately
Meaning virtually all Americans may have entry to immunization. (NYT $)
+ Here’s a few of the potential delicate uncomfortable side effects they could expertise. (CNN)
+ Why toddlers who’ve already had covid nonetheless want vaccines. (Time)

2 Canada is banning single-use plastics
Starting in six months’ time. (The Guardian)
+ Similarly, Wales is contemplating banning single-use provider baggage and moist wipes. (BBC)
+ A sprig-on plant coating could possibly be a substitute for plastic wraps. (Engadget)
+ A French firm is utilizing enzymes to recycle one of the vital widespread single-use plastics. (MIT Technology Review)

3 China is gathering much more private knowledge than we thought
Including ‘voice prints’ from the general public, to strengthen its authorities’s authoritarian rule. (NYT $)

4 Google Search isn’t what it was once
Wading via advertisements and fewer blogs make it really feel extra sterile and fewer human. (The Atlantic $)
+ An entire lot of persons are Googling ‘Bitcoin lifeless’ in the intervening time. (Cointelegraph)

5 We should be smarter about how we use AI to handle local weather change
Renewable vitality is one space that might profit from less complicated programs. (Spectrum IEEE)
+ Renewable Energy Certificates could also be overstating company environmental efforts. (NBC)
+ Renewables are set to soar. (MIT Technology Review)

6 Meta’s digital actuality headsets are fairly uninspiring
But the corporate is hellbent on making a viable headset a actuality. (The Verge)
+ The metaverse is trying pretty impractical proper now. (WP $)
+ It has a groping drawback already, too. (MIT Technology Review)
+ Here’s why it’s necessary all of us use the identical phrases when speaking about it. (Fast Company $)

7 To decolonize AI, we’ve got to unpick its very cloth
And set up continuous monitoring from oversight boards. (Neo.Life)
+ AI is creating a brand new colonial world order. (MIT Technology Review)

8 We nonetheless don’t know why the ocean glows a milky inexperienced
But going into area might shed some gentle on the thriller. (Hakai Magazine)

9 Internet Explorer is gone, however not forgotten
Some elements of the net are nonetheless reliant on it. (Wired $)

10 Here’s what tech staff do with their swag from failed startups
Top tip: don’t get a tattoo of your organization’s brand. (The Information $)

Quote of the day

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