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Renew's Trash Can Design Tracks Consumers Via Wi-Fi Usage

By: Laura McQuarrie - Published: • References: qz and gizmodo
Renew collaborated with Presence Orb to come up with a trash can design capable of tracking consumers through the smartphones they carry. Renew describes these trash cans like "a cookie for the physical world." This seems like an invasive measure but the trash cans only pick up a user's unique device number and it is not illegal in the UK for websites to notify users that a tracking cookie is being used on them.

The aim of these data-collecting trash cans is meant to give companies more insight about the behaviors of its customers and in turn, display ads that are relevant to them.

There are 12 of these trash cans that have been set up throughout central London and they have tracked nearly a million smartphones in a single day and about 4 million in a week.