Back in flight: more passengers surprise airlines

The e-commerce wars get hairier, while Zoom meetings get furrier

May 21, 2020 | Current events
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"Actually, we would prefer the entire row, please."

The clouds may be parting for air travel

For the first time since the pandemic began, bookings are surpassing cancellations. For Southwest, initial capacity estimates of 10% were exceeded, with the airline reporting actual rates near 30%, while overall TSA traffic is up more than 200% from all-time lows in March. That said, no airline currently plans to run routes beyond half-capacity through at least July.

But Walmart cools its Jets

The retail giant is phasing out Jet.com after purchasing the online marketplace for $3 billion just four years ago. Despite a pandemic-fueled uptick in online shopping, the failed challenger to Amazon ultimately struggled to make headway, tallying a $2 billion loss in 2019.

While Facebook drops "Shops"

Where Jet.com faltered, Facebook hopes to succeed with "Shops," its latest challenger for the e-commerce crown. The platform goes beyond the company's Craigslist-like Marketplace tab by focusing on small businesses, allowing them to easily list their products for free, with eventual plans for shoppers to try on items from home via augmented reality.

"I have a 5pm call with a Labradoodle"

As stay-at-home orders spur demand for animal companionship, dog food brand Pedigree is supporting a contactless form of pet adoption by allowing prospective owners to meet and interact with their potential pets over Zoom. Each virtual meeting will feature a specific US shelter, and lucky locals who connect with a canine online will see Pedigree cover all adoption fees.