eBay, Inc. is set to debut its brand new developer business tomorrow, X.commerce and we have many of the details that the e-commerce giant will be announcing at its annual developer conference. As we’ve written in the past, eBay, PayPal, Magento and GSI will be the pillars of the X.commerce platform, which will feature a “fabric” that stitches the platform together with other partners to create new experiences for retailers and their customers.
PayPal’s director of communications Anuj Nayar tells me that this is the first time eBay has created a business focused on developers as the customers. Previously developers were part of each business, with separate developer experiences for eBay’s marketplace, PayPal and other businesses. Now, developers will get access to all of these technologies in one place, and according to Nayar, will be able to create new shopping and e-commerce experiences based on these interconnected suite of tools.
X.commerce will also be an open ecosystem, with outside partners also integrating their technologies for the developer community. Adobe, Facebook and Kenshoo have all created experiences and APIs for developers to integrate into their applications relating to online shopping, mobile, and local components.
Local product inventory and shopping site Milo, which eBay acquired last year for $75 million is going to be launching an API for developers to integrate local inventory into their own applications. This will be part of the X.commerce platform as well.
eBay-acquired barcode scanning app RedLaser will soon be launching a 3.0 version of its applications which have been integrated with both Milo and PayPal. So you can scan a barcode, and the app will tell you if its available in a local store or on eBay, and let you pay for it (either in the store or on eBay) in the app via PayPal.
eBay also acquired Magento earlier this year for over $180 million. Magento’s open source software basically enables merchants and brands to create online storefronts and have a decent amount of control over the look, content, SEO, digital marketing and functionality of their online storefronts. Tomorrow, eBay will announce that Magento, via the X.commerce platform, will be launching an app store for Magento extensions. Developers can create applications on top of Magento, and retailers can use this functionality in their online storefronts via the app store. It’s similar in theory to the Salesforce App Exchange, but for online retailers.
In my opinion, one of the biggest products that will be debuted tomorrow is a new collaboration between PayPal and X.commerce called PayPal Access. Basically, PayPal Access is a payments identity technology that would allow you to carry your payments identity to various retailers on the web. So instead of signing up with a specific retailer’s credential’s on a site, you would sign up with your PayPal account which would include all of your financial, shipping and billing information, as well as your purchase history. It’s sort of a cross between Amazon’s payments platform and Facebook Connect. We’re told PayPal is partnering with Gigya and Janrain for PayPal Access.
As Nayar explains, identity is just another piece of the puzzle for PayPal and X.commerce. For now, PayPal has yet to announce any major retailers using Access but I’m sure we can expect a few to jump on board soon.
There’s still much more PayPal, eBay and X.commerce will announce tomorrow, I am told. For example, we don’t know the exact details of the Facebook announcement. Facebook Platform Marketing Chief Katie Burke Mitic just joined eBay’s board.
And considering how bullish both PayPal and eBay are on mobile, we can probably expect more in that area as well. PayPal is also expected to debut a new payments platform for merchants as well as in-store integrations. Stay tuned.