. 24/7 Space News .
Retailers eye new tech, data to revive fortunes
By Rob Lever
Las Vegas (AFP) Jan 11, 2019

With robots, augmented reality displays and other advanced technologies, traditional retailers are taking a cue from the online world to find new ways to connect and keep customers.

The 2019 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas featured dozens of exhibitors showcasing how brick and mortar sellers can ramp up competition against the likes of Amazon and other online merchants -- and cope with what some call a retail apocalypse.

Chinese retail giants JD.com and Suning each had a large presence at the show in search of partners for their "retail as a service" strategy, to allow merchants to plug into new tech platforms.

"We believe the future of retail is not about online or offline, it's boundary-less," said JD communications manager Yuchuan Wang.

JD showed how retailers can use augmented reality screens that allow shoppers to use gesture control to virtually try on and buy clothing and beauty products.

With these systems, a retailer might not need to stock all apparel products in all sizes, enabling the consumer to simply click on an item in the store and have it delivered rapidly.

One of China's largest retailers, JD also showcased the use of delivery robots and drones which are being used in China, capable of reaching most Chinese consumers within a day or two.

- Skip the cashier -

Suning, which claims to be China's largest omni-channel retailer, also showed augmented reality retail try-ons as well as its cashier-free store similar to the Amazon Go model.

"I can pick up an apple and it tells me how much the price is," said Suning strategy director Watson Wat, who was showing CES attendees how its technology can be applied.

"And with my products I just walk out and it uses facial recognition to identify and charge me."

Suning announced it was seeking partnerships with retailers for its "brain of smart retail" that could enable stores to use its technology.

"I believe the technology is mature now, it's affordable," Wat said.

- Smart mirrors -

Elsewhere, Procter & Gamble's booth at CES showed how customers can use of augmented reality and facial recognition built into mirrors to get personalized recommendations for skin care and beauty products.

"We capture a unique identification for each person and deliver personalized results to them" on the basis of artificial intelligence, said P&G's Tina McCarthy.

SoftBank Robotics demonstrated how retailers can use two different kinds of robots -- one to interact with customers and another to monitor inventory and store shelves -- to help improve bottom lines.

SoftBank is partnering with Tally, made by Simbe Robotics, which scans store shelves to keep better track of what is available.

"There is a massive problem in the retail space between what the system says is on the shelf and what really is there," said Steve Carlin of SoftBank Robotics.

A more accurate system can help deal with merchandise which is overstocked or understocked, he added.

"We can start to push the right type of advertisements or incentives to shop the things that are over-inventoried," he said.

- Getting to know you -

SoftBank's humanoid robot Pepper is teaming up on the effort by interacting with customers, including using facial recognition to greet customers by name and guide them to products.

"For retailers, they know a lot about you online but don't really know you at all in the store," Carlin said.

Offering suggestions in the same manner as online retailers can make sense.

"Retailers are always trying to get one more item in the basket," Carlin said. "They can't get more foot traffic but they are hoping to get more items in the basket."

Maeve Duska of the consultancy USA Technologies, said many retailers are stepping up efforts to keep up with the Amazon Go concept where customers can walk out and pay automatically without waiting for checkout, a concept known as "unattended retail."

"Finally the brick and mortar retailer understands how much competition there is from online," said Duska, who spoke at a CES panel on high-tech retailing.

"They are trying to duplicate the online experience."

With facial recognition to identify the customer and fingerprint and retina scans which can be used for payment, retailers are discovering ways to speed up the retail experience, often without interacting with a human.

"We're very much a self-service society," she said.

For many younger shoppers, "they do not want to talk to people" in the store.

- Tempered expectations -

Analyst Brendan Witcher of Forrester Research, another CES panel participant, said some technologies like virtual and augmented reality can offer value for some goods that can help customers visualize clothing or other items.

But he cautioned against too much optimism about the use of data analytics and artificial intelligence to market in the manner of Amazon.

"Most retailers still can't get a personalized email out the door," he said.

"If that's the case it's not time to put a robot in the store.






Related Links
Space Tourism, Space Transport and Space Exploration News

Thanks for being there;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5+ Billed Monthly

paypal only
SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once

credit card or paypal

US gadget love forecast to grow despite trust issues
Las Vegas (AFP) Jan 7, 2019
The US tech industry is weathering a crisis of confidence over data protection and a difficult geopolitical situation, with record sales expected in 2019, organizers of the Consumer Electronics Show said Sunday. The Consumer Technology Association (CTA) predicted that US retail revenue in the sector would climb to a record high $398 billion this year. The forecast was unveiled ahead of the opening of the giant fair which from January 8-11 will showcase the newest tech in mobile computing, health ... read more

Comment using your Disqus, Facebook, Google or Twitter login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Star Trek style translators step closer to reality at gadget show

NASA fell victim to Trump-Congress Feud says Rogozin

Russian space chief says US shutdown delayed NASA visit

Blue Origin to start flying tourists on New Shepard suborbital vehicle in 2019

Navy test-fires low-cost, hypersonic-speed projectiles

The high cost of space missions

Small-satellite launch service revenues to pass $69B by 2030

Difficulties in Planned Soyuz Launches Preparation to Emerge in 2020 - Source

UK tests self driving robots for Mars

ExoMars mission has good odds of finding life on Mars if life exists.

Mars Express gets festive: A winter wonderland on Mars

Over Six Months Without Word From Opportunity

In space, the US sees a rival in China

China launches telecommunication technology test satellite

China's Chang'e-4 makes historic landing on moon's far side

China launches first Hongyun project satellite

The Satellite Applications Catapult partners with Infostellar to provide improved ground station access

Why I'm excited about Amazon entering the SatCom industry

Year of many new beginnings for Indian space sector

ESA astronaut Alexander Gerst returns to Earth for the second time

Holographic color printing for optical security

New technique offers rapid assessment of radiation exposure

A high-performance material at extremely low temperatures

Chemical catalysts turn tiny 2D sheets into 3D objects

TESS discovers its third new planet, with longest orbit yet

Astronomers find warped protoplanetary disk around distant star

Citizen scientists find unusual exoplanet among Kepler data

Young planets orbiting red dwarfs may lack ingredients for life

New Ultima Thule Discoveries from NASA's New Horizons

New Horizons unveils Ultima and Thule as a binary Kuiper

NASA says faraway world Ultima Thule shaped like 'snowman'

NASA succeeds in historic flyby of faraway world

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2024 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Statement Our advertisers use various cookies and the like to deliver the best ad banner available at one time. All network advertising suppliers have GDPR policies (Legitimate Interest) that conform with EU regulations for data collection. By using our websites you consent to cookie based advertising. If you do not agree with this then you must stop using the websites from May 25, 2018. Privacy Statement. Additional information can be found here at About Us.