NRF 2019 Recap: Scandit Mobile Computer Vision and the Future of Retail

With the biggest retail conference on the planet now in the rear-view mirror, we’d like to take this opportunity to recap the three very busy days we spent showcasing mobile computer vision technology that transforms retailers’ relationships with consumers and empowers their employees.

In addition to the demos, the new edition of the point-of-view paper ‘Think Like Amazon’ drew lots of attention. The paper illustrates how you can create an Amazon Go ‘just walk out’ style of consumer experience but at a fraction of the cost, starting with exactly what you have already including existing infrastructure, barcodes and smartphones. ‚Think Like Amazon‘ and the associated demos really contextualized what we mean when we say that Scandit technology is revolutionizing the way retailers and consumers interact with everyday objects to deliver superior experiences.

Here’s what visitors experienced at our four demonstration stations in the Scandit booth:

Inspect shelves and carry out tasks like label correction or inventory spot checks by pointing a smartphone camera at a shelf and seeing their tasks in the phone’s viewfinder, superimposed with augmented reality

Shelf management just got a whole lot faster

At our first demonstration station, we showed visitors how a store associate can inspect shelves and carry out tasks like markdown, label correction or inventory spot checks upwards of 40% faster by simply pointing a smartphone camera at a shelf and seeing their tasks in the phone’s viewfinder, superimposed over the products with augmented reality.

This demo highlighted how the ubiquity of smartphones places reliable scanners in every employee’s hand with a familiar user interface so there’s limited need for training, plus managers have full visibility of completed tasks.

We also previewed our latest innovation in barcode scanning and spatial mapping capabilities. This sneak peek into what’s coming highlights the way we are leveraging augmented reality to create virtual layouts of a store, so customers and store associates can go beyond the local shelf section and find items anywhere on a retail aisle. By ‘looking’ at its surroundings, the device understands where it is and can point the user in the right direction. Using the “product maps”, we are no longer limited to the barcode scan range of the device to superimpose virtual information on shelf labels and products. It means shelf management tasks and consumer in-store interactions can happen at greater distances. We can also point to products that are not currently in the viewfinder, since the device understands where it is in the space.

Point device camera at shelf and easily discover personalized deals, recommendations or best sellers all with augmented reality

In-store shopping just got amazingly more personal

Visitors to our booth also saw how Scandit is redefining the consumer’s shopping experience and enabling store associates to carry out tasks much more effectively.

Our second demonstration station showed how, when browsing in store, customers can make informed buying decisions in seconds by watching product videos and reviews displayed using augmented reality overlays on their mobile scanning app. It’s taking the online shopping experience directly in-store and literally gives them a virtual personal shopper.

Shoppers were able to point their device’s camera at a shelf and easily discover personalized deals, recommendations, best sellers, or view their shopping list with augmented reality – delivering a more personalized shopping and gamification experience for consumers.

Likewise, store associates can quickly find the right product for the convenience of their customers, spend more time with them and less time on tasks like shelf management, markdown, and inventory management.

Retail consumers to explore product information quickly

Product reviews in store just got instantly available

In 2017, Bazaarvoice research revealed that online product reviews can boost in-store sales by up to 75%. At our third demo station, we showed how, by using augmented reality, you can easily implement a way for retail consumers to explore product information quickly. They can browse through visual information of multiple products in a matter of seconds using their own phones.

Click & Collect just got lightning fast

At the fourth demonstration station, our team explained how smartphones can empower back-of-house employees to reshape the way they carry out tasks like Click & Collect.

We showed how a store associate can quickly scan a barcode, presented by a customer, for order pickup and then easily find the right order by pointing their smartphone at a rack of products to locate the matching order immediately. We also demonstrated how we are taking the heat out of inventory tasks by scanning multiple items simultaneously by using smartphones and Scandit’s MatrixScan technology.

„Eye-catching“ technology

It didn’t take long for industry observers at NRF to notice what we have been doing to help retailers leverage mobile computer vision technology.  In their article „5 eye-catching tech innovations from NRF“ Grocery Dive explained the critical role Scandit’s augmented reality technology is playing for retailers trying to optimize their customers’ in-store shopping experiences.

In Cheddar’s review of the major innovations showcased at NRF 2019, Scandit was cited as a driver in the effort to digitize the physical store. Cheddar noted that major retailers are currently leveraging mobile computer vision by pre-loading Scandit technology onto its associates‘ smart devices across its brick-and-mortar locations.

Join us in the retail revolution

Scandit’s technology is already being used by leading retailers such as Sephora, Louis Vuitton and Levi Strauss & Co. Join them and us in setting new trends in consumer and employee experience. The technology is ready for deployment today, so now is the time to make it happen. 

To learn more, contact us.

Special announcement

On February 12 at 11AM CET or 11AM EST join a webinar with Scandit CEO Samuel Mueller and Forrester VP George Lawrie to see how and why savvy retailers are using mobile computer vision to digitize the in-store shopping experience and reduce costs by speeding up store operations workflows. Learn how to do it simply and affordably for your enterprise.