Nov 28, 2017

Why "Cyber Monday" no longer makes sense

Wilfredo Lee / AP

Inexplicably, Cyber Monday is still a thing. And bigger than ever.

Flashback: The invented holiday began in 2005 as a way to cater to online shoppers who used their work computers to order holiday presents.

Our thought bubble: That made some sense in the era where not everyone had a PC at home and many were on dial-up connections. The need for a separate shopping day in an era of ubiquitous smartphones and improved broadband access is far less clear.

That's all the more true in a world where online pioneers like Amazon have physical stores and traditional retailers have Cyber Monday promotions via their online operations.

The numbers: Nonetheless, this year's Cyber Monday was shaping up to be the biggest ever, according to Adobe. The company expects it to be the biggest sales day in history, with an estimated $6.6 billion in spending, up nearly 17% from last year. Of that, smartphones will have accounted for more than $1.6 billion, Adobe estimates.

But, according to Loup Ventures' Gene Munster, many big brands cut down on the discounts they offered.

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 11 a.m. ET: 684,652 — Total deaths: 32,113 — Total recoveries: 145,696.
  2. U.S.: Leads the world in cases. Total confirmed cases as of 11 a.m. ET: 125,313 — Total deaths: 2,191 — Total recoveries: 2,612.
  3. Federal government latest: Trump announces new travel advisories for New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, but rules out quarantine enforcement.
  4. Public health updates: Fauci says 100,000 to 200,000 Americans could die from virus.
  5. State updates: Louisiana governor says state is on track to exceed ventilator capacity by end of this week.
  6. World updates: In Spain, over 1,400 people were confirmed dead between Thursday to Saturday.
  7. What should I do? Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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Polowczyk speaks at a coronavirus at the White House March 23. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

The senior Navy officer now in charge of fixing America's coronavirus supply chain is trying to fill the most urgent needs: ventilators and personal protective gear. But barely a week into his role at the Federal Emergency Management Agency, he's still trying to establish what's in the pipeline and where it is.

Driving the news: "Today, I, as leader of FEMA's supply chain task force, am blind to where all the product is," Rear Admiral John Polowczyk tells Axios.

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Why it matters: Louisiana — and particularly New Orleans — is site of one of most intense coronavirus outbreaks in the U.S. Local and state government officials like Edwards have been sounding the alarm about the nationwide shortage of ventilators, which are crucial for treating patients who are unable to breathe for themselves.

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