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How technology is changing the way we shop

More than half of all shopping in Europe is now done online. E-commerce has been the single biggest shake-up to hit retail, but technology is also set to change the way that we shop in a number of different ways. AI, augmented reality, robotics and other innovations are all either already in use or under development for use in various retail scenarios.

Walmart is trialing robotic shopping trolleys

In the US, for example, Walmart is testing a robotic shopping trolley system called Dash. No more struggling with wonky wheels! Customers can transfer a shopping list and the trolley will take the most efficient route to get each item on the list. The customer can also scan their shopping as they go and pay for it via the Dash trolley.

To create a more personalised shopping experience, data and AI are used. The “Nike by Melrose” store in Los Angeles features a geo-fenced area that uses GPS technology to send special offers to people’s phones as they enter. Israeli start-up Mystor-E, meanwhile, is aiming to bring the online targeted advertising model into brick-and-mortar stores. They use software that detects a customer’s age, gender and personal style from a video feed combined with external data such as weather conditions and current trends. Their displays will change depending on who is standing in front of them.

AI can deliver fashion tips

At Tommy Hilfiger’s Regent Street store in London, mirrors are equipped with radio frequency identification (RFID) technology. This recognizes the items that customers are trying on and suggest complementary items. Customers can also request alternatives and different sizes and have them brought in automatically.

Technology is even being used to create stores that can generate their own energy. Pavegen makes floor tiles that can generate small amounts of energy from the downward pressure caused when people walk on them. Not only that, but they can also be linked to interactive lighting displays and gather data on how people behave, including where in a shopping centre they go and how long they linger in front of certain stores or displays.

It will be fascinating to see what the future has in store, but technology is already changing the way that we all shop forever.

Original article published by Tech Data Newsflash, edited by TDConnect editors.

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