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Uk.businessinsider. Amazon’s New Bookstore Flips The Script. Amazon’s new bookstore in Seattle has been getting a lot of questions and criticism — but only from people who think there’s still a distinction between online and physical retail. Analysts who try to set up a life-or-death dynamic between e-commerce and brick-and-mortar are missing the point entirely. The real story right now in the $4.5 trillion U.S. retail industry is a broad, systemic shift from a product-based economy toward a new focus on consumer relationships. The 20th century product economy was based on discrete, anonymous transactions. Companies sold things to strangers. Retail was about inventory, shelving and cost-plus pricing. The sign by the cash register summed it up: “All Sales Final.” Sears, Roebuck and Co. and Macy’s had minimal insight into who was actually buying their products, or how they were using them. Walmart is a good example of this model.

Digitally native retailers, on the other hand, are maniacally customer-focused. Target Rolls Out New Pilot Program To Track Customers In Stores. Philips turns LEDs into an indoor GPS for supermarkets. 2015: The Year Of The Mobile Beacon (Part One) Apple Got it Right in 2013: Why 2015 Will Be the Year Of The Mobile Beacon (Part Two) Disney's $1 Billion Bet on a Magical Wristband. If you want to imagine how the world will look in just a few years, once our cell phones become the keepers of both our money and identity, skip Silicon Valley and book a ticket to Orlando.

Go to Disney World. Then, reserve a meal at a restaurant called Be Our Guest, using the Disney World app to order your food in advance. The restaurant lies beyond a gate of huge fiberglass boulders, painstakingly airbrushed to look like crumbling remnants of the past. Crossing a cartoon-like drawbridge, you see the parapets of a castle rising beyond a snow-dusted ridge, both rendered in miniature to appear far away. If you’re wearing your Disney MagicBand and you’ve made a reservation, a host will greet you at the drawbridge and already know your name—Welcome Mr.

“It’s like magic!” We tend to acclimate quickly if technology delivers what we want before we want it. How do they find our table? And it all worked seamlessly, like magic. A Friction-Free World Click to Open Overlay Gallery Go Back to Top. Microsoft hints at 'Minority Report'-style customer recognition for retailers.

Imagine a store that knows about the outfit you just bought, and can tell you exactly which shoes will go with it. Microsoft has teased the ability for retailers to employ its Kinect technology to identify customers through facial recognition, bringing the world one step closer to the weirdly prescient future displayed in the 2002 film Minority Report, which was based on a 1956 short story by Philip K. Dick. The introduction of such personalized retail has been viewed not only as a way to provide better service, but also as a dangerous entry into the personal lives of shoppers.

Business Insider first noticed the nugget, which was included in a blog post from Microsoft entitled "2015: The Year of On-demand, Personalized Shopping. " Providing retailers with a way to quickly identify customers in order tailor shopping experiences to their tendencies is seen as the next step in creating better experience. There has been some pushback about the use of data. Have something to add to this story? Apple and retail partners prepare for launch of Apple Pay. It's almost time to start paying for things with your iPhone 6 instead of plastic.

Last month, Apple said its Apple Pay mobile payments service would launch in October, and new information suggests that the anticipated debut is fast approaching. 9to5Mac reports that Apple is preparing its retail staff ahead of Apple Pay's arrival with mandatory one-hour training sessions. Leaked training materials reveal some new details on just how Apple Pay will work; Apple Pay is bundled in with the Passbook app — which we already knew — and you'll be able to store up to 8 credit cards with Apple.

You can use any card Apple already has on file for your iTunes account, or scan in new payment methods using the iPhone's camera. Since Apple Pay and mobile payments in general will mark unfamiliar territory for many consumers, the company is making it extremely simple to review recent transactions made with an iPhone over NFC. How iBeacons Can Turn Your In-Store Staff into Mind-Readers. iBeacon technology is hot stuff right now. I’ve heard people frame iBeacons as a potential savior for the brick-and-mortar retail experience. I’ve heard testimonials about all of the incremental revenue that might be generated at, say, a basketball game, through iBeacons.

And I’ve heard how an iBeacon might be responsible for the most effortlessly luxurious hotel experience I will ever have. There are good reasons why people are talking about iBeacon technology in this way, but what is clear is that the current product must continue to evolve to live up to the hype, and that Salesforce will be a key player in this process. To understand why, you need to understand what an iBeacon ecosystem is and how it works.

The iBeacon The iBeacon itself is like a lighthouse, radiating a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) signal which allows any nearby mobile device to understand its position (even indoors, where GPS is not viable). The App The iBeacon App, which facilitates people's interaction with iBeacons. Tablets Are Making Waiters Obsolete. iBeacon is set to change the way Londoners shop. Here's why. How can you leverage mobile to increase profitability for your company? Find out at MobileBeat, VentureBeat's 7th annual event on the future of mobile, on July 8-9 in San Francisco. Register now and save $200! iBeacon is about to change the way Londoners shop. Stores in London’s huge Brixton neighborhood will begin using iBeacons in conjunction with the so-called Brixton Pound, a cryptocurrency created to encourage locals to spend their cash at stores within the community.

The ambitious project will launch mid-July. Originally a paper currency, the Brixton Pound became a mobile pay-by-text service in 2011. “When you walk into a store, and your Bluetooth is turned on, the iBeacon will send a notification to your app so that the two are synched. Above: Dingo CTO Martin Wenisch and developer Jura Ibl Ibl said the new mobile app provides a simple interface for using the Brixton Pound. “We have the right mixture,” Ibl said. “iBeacons are really helpful for payments. Powered by VBProfiles. What Does The Future Of Retail Look Like? Four Young Companies Provide A Glimpse. Toys R Us drives holiday sales via multichannel mobile effort. Toys R Us is redefining the way mobile consumers shop this holiday season with a multichannel campaign that incorporates redesigned mobile applications and optimized sites, as well as new QR code scanning capabilities.

Additionally, the retailer has added mobile bar code scanning capabilities, as well as a new tablet-optimized site to further solidify its position in the space. As part of the enhancements to the company’s mobile capabilities, customers can now take advantage of some of the its popular omnichannel services, including “Buy Online, Pick Up In Store” and “Ship to Store,” through their smartphones and tablets. “Mobile is our fastest growing channel of consumer engagement at Toys R Us,” said Meghan Kennedy, a spokeswoman for Toys R Us, Wayne, NJ. “It is an integral part of our omnichannel strategy. Holiday shopping Toys R Us is taking a mobile-first approach this holiday season.

Additionally, Toys R Us is also making its weekly ads and deals more accessible to consumers. GE joins Phillips in introducing LEDs that fast-blink coupons to your phone | VentureBeat | Marketing | by Barry Levine. Get ready to shop in a store where the store lighting is telling your smartphone about coupons, specials, and product placement. Next week at the big Lightfair show in Las Vegas, GE will show a new generation of LED lighting fixtures that communicate through visible light to your smartphone’s camera. “Anything that lets you personalize the shopping experience, particularly if you can do it in real time, is almost the Holy Grail,” Steven Kirn told VentureBeat.

He’s executive director of the Miller Center for Retailing Education and Research at the University of Florida. He noted that a variety of other approaches have been attempted to personalize shopping info, ranging from motion-sensing coupon printers and pricey RFID technology to implementations of Apple’s iBeacons. “But if you can incorporate it into a lighting system you’re going to put up anyway,” Kirn told us, “it becomes pretty attractive.” The lights employ Bytelight technology. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. Powered by VBProfiles.