Saïd Business School, University of Oxford to Map the Future of Retail in Intel-Sponsored Initiative
- Major new research project, by Saïd Businsss School at the University of Oxford, to be sponsored by Intel;
the future of the retail industry to be studied and modelled.
- Intel to showcase augmented reality, gesture recognition, digital signage and mobile web applications
at Retail Business Technology Expo, London.
- Kraft Foods, the LEGO Group and Uma, amongst customers revealing their latest technology innovations
for customer engagement.
RETAIL BUSINESS TECHNOLOGY EXPO, London, March 13-14, 2012 – Intel Corporation is working with industry partners and customers to help redefine retail business models, while a new research initiative with Saïd Business School, Oxford is set to help map out the future of the retail industry.
As technology increasingly influences the way consumers shop, and pricing information is more immediately available at the point of purchase, retailers are facing new challenges to remain competitive. Close cooperation between Intel and the retail ecosystem has allowed 2nd generation Intel® Core™ processor-based technologies to form the foundations of new, visually stunning shopping experiences. All of this means a more enjoyable, information-rich environment for consumers. Importantly it also helps businesses to respond to some of the most pressing challenges they face in this evolving market.
Amongst the technologies developed by Intel and adopted by its customer is the Intel® AIM Suite. When integrated into retail solutions, the Intel AIM Suite allows for rapidly generated content which is targeted to the needs of each unique consumer, helping deliver a more personalised shopping experience. Supporting the growing demand for measurable and highly targeted marketing and sales campaigns, the Intel AIM Suite can anonymously collect valuable shopper data to more accurately measure interactions and outcomes.
The Future of Retail Revealed
One example of the new retail vision has been delivered thanks to a collaboration between Intel and Kraft Foods. The goal was to develop an immersive customer experience that combines interactive visual merchandising, self-service sampling, and audience detection technology. ‘Diji-Taste’ has now been born – a Facebook-enabled solution that delivers an immersive and interactive vending solution. With social media integration, social gaming (while you wait for product to dispense), mobile device integration, product advertising – all supported by analytics capabilities and inventory tracking – it truly represents a new direction in retail.
Uma will be unveiling the second generation of their uma SKINTM semantic display product at the Intel booth. Based upon the Intel® Core® Platform and Intel® AIM Suite, uma SKINTM is an interactive multitouch wall which uses advanced displays. It enables customers to dive into more than 25,000 products from more than 500 brands and aggregates expert comments and social media feeds. Customers may select to compare products and copy those products to their mobile devices for order or checkout. Additionally, the integration of the Intel® Audience Impression Metrics Suite (Intel® AIM Suite) enables retailers to better understand characteristics of the wall’s users, including gender, age, interests, impressions, and other demographics.
Another highlight at the booth is the Metaio software based DIGITAL BOX kiosk, currently installed in all LEGO Brand Stores worldwide and recognized as one of the best examples of augmented reality (AR) in retail today. Combining the added value of more confident buying decisions with product fascination makes it a one of a kind in this domain. Customers can hold LEGO boxes up to the DIGITAL BOX and watch a 3D animation of the product – from all angles, in every detail – in their hands.
“The traditional retail business model is broken”
This is the hypothesis that the Oxford Institute of Retail Management, part of the Said Business School at the University of Oxford, will be examining as part of a comprehensive new study into the very future of the retail business. Sponsored by Intel, the project will explore that fact that technology is changing the way in which customers shop, a trend which demands that retailers reconsider their business models.
The research team will conduct interviews with industry leaders, experts and trend-setters in the process of testing various scenarios for the future of retailing. This will see them examine the growing need to bring physical and digital worlds closer together, considering the raft of challenges it brings. From keeping on track with advances in mobile technologies to the integration of new solutions with legacy systems, and with new security issues emerging as applications and data proliferate, the retail world is set to see a fundamental shift.
The importance of the study goes beyond the development of new technologies alone. Changes in the nature and scale of the retail industry have far wider socio-economic implications. From new and varied employment opportunities to the reshaping of the traditional town centre, which may occur as new digitally-enriched stores become a reality, the research is expected to chart a new era for the retail industry.
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