5 things you need to know in Australian tech today

Airbnb Australian exec Shaun Stewart. Image: Supplied.

It’s Thursday. Here’s what you need to know.

1. The most senior Australian exec at Airbnb is working on solving one of the most painful parts of group travel: splitting bills. Shaun Stewart is head of vacation rentals at the $US25 billion accommodation platform and he’s got his work cut out for him. You can read the full story here.

2. Soon you’ll never need cash to shop in a Westfield mall again. The shopping giant is on a mission to cut cash-only transactions from its centres and it sees the food court as the final frontier. It’s part of a broader tech strategy which the traditional bricks and mortar landlord is pursuing to help tenants compete against the conveniences of online shopping. Full story is here.

3. Campaign Monitor is transforming into an automated email marketing platform. The Australian startup just made its first major product changes since it took on $US250 million in funding last year and appointed former Salesforce execs Alex Bard as CEO and Kraig Swensrud as CMO. The email marketing platform is expanding to add automated email options which mean companies can set up communication with users each time a password is reset or a transaction is made. Full story is here.

4. Facebook is taking on streaming apps Periscope and Meerkat with its own live video for celebrities. In Australia, the Madden brothers and Delta Goodrem will be the first to use the live video platform. More here.

5. Google Australia is expanding its program to teach kids computer science. Together with the University of Adelaide, the tech company has created several open online courses covering basic coding and digital literacy. Google has also flagged it’s considering more partnerships with universities. There’s more here.

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