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Serge Matta, president of GroundTruth, at an Axios event on 5G.

Serge Matta, President of global tech platform GroundTruth, said 5G is "very, very close" to impacting retail. Through the 5G network, stores in a mall could pinpoint customers' location, even while they are offline, through constant pinging in the network.

Why it matters: Matta predicts that 5G could push shoppers into stores by using their offline behaviors, which could help spark a rebound in retail.

Yes, but: As 5G strengthens, the tech world will need to confront privacy concerns. GroundTruth currently tracks 75 million people, and every single one had to "knowingly" give opt-in consent, Matta said.

"The consumer has to provide explicit consent we're tracking them"
— Matta

The big picture: Before 5G can help the retail industry get back on its feet, privacy concerns and regulations must be addressed within the network.

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Go deeper

2 mins ago - World

German election: Exit polls show close race to succeed Angela Merkel

SPD leader Olaf Scholz. Photo: Alex Kraus/Bloomberg via Getty Images

BERLIN — The first exit poll from Sunday's German elections shows the center-left Social Democrats (SPD) and the center-right Christian Democrats (CDU) in a dead heat at 25%, leaving the race to succeed Angela Merkel in the balance.

The state of play: A second exit poll showed the SPD narrowly ahead, and that's the one they displayed at SPD campaign headquarters, causing the room to erupt in cheers. Official results will roll in throughout the evening.

Abbott says he'll hire Border Patrol agents who whipped at migrants

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) on Sunday defended the actions of U.S. Border Patrol agents who charged at Haitian migrants on horseback, blaming the Biden administration for not preventing them from crossing the border.

Why it matters: Abbott's remark on "Fox News Sunday" comes amid increased backlash over the incident, with President Biden saying, "I promise... those people will pay,” and the Department of Homeland Security launching an investigation.

Everyone wants to be an influencer

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The number of people looking to become online influencers has exploded during the pandemic.

Why it matters: Almost anyone can find themselves in a position to become an influencer, and brands are throwing billions of dollars at online content creators.