Morrisons, Verizon, Pinterest: Everything that matters this morning | Marketing Week

Government launches inquiry into online pricing

The government is launching an inquiry into online pricing that will look into how personal data can be used to set individual prices for items such as holidays, cars and household goods.

The research, conducted by the competition watchdog, will consider the use and prevalence of ‘dynamic pricing’ and how data such as location, marital status, age or travel history can be used to set prices. The concern is that technology, including artificial intelligence and bots, could be used to charge some shoppers more than others.

Online prices often fluctuate during the day depending on demand, Uber’s pricing is a clear example of this.

Andrea Coscelli, chief executive of the Competition and Markets Authority, says: “With more of us shopping online, it’s important we understand how advances in technology impact consumers … so we can understand how best to protect people from unfair practices where they exist. We will also use the results in our ongoing efforts to help vulnerable consumers.”

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Morrisons, Verizon, Pinterest: Everything that matters this morning.