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What are the most exciting technology innovations coming to disrupt the retail industry?
Technologies have been changing the retail landscape from a long time, but certainly, all do not stand out as disruptors. A truly disruptive technology not only changes the way people think, but also the way they operate. Here comes up a list of the top 6 game changing technologies disrupting retail in 2017.
#1 Machine Learning: The Real Revolution
Retailers track customer shopping behavior through social media, previous purchase history, consumer demand and market trends, and gain understanding on shopper’s buying trends leveraging big data technologies. Presently, Machine Learning amplifies the reach of big data analytics in determining available products or ordering just in time. The coalesce of Advanced Analytics and Machine Learning (deep learning) not only streamlines the shopping experience, but also automates it.
#2 Artificial Intelligence: The Ultimate Aphrodisiac
The retail workbook has a new chapter added to it, namely Artificial Intelligence (AI). A new feather to AI is Visual Listening where retailers explore and examine photos on social media (say, Instagram, Facebook) to understand and realize customer interests and needs. Conversational commerce trend, especially via messaging apps and chatbots, continues to grow with a pure AI core packed in NLP (Natural Language Processing) capability enabled layer.
#3 Virtual and Augmented Reality: The Interesting Illusion
Virtual Reality, together with its sister technology, Augmented Reality, can transform the end-to-end shopping journey. While virtual reality takes a buyer to a simulated world, augmented reality overrides the virtual elements in real world through smartphone or tablet. Practical implementations of virtual and augmented reality includes Topshop Kinect Dressing Rooms, Shisedio Makeup Mirrors, Sayduck Furniture Visualizer, Converse Shoe Sampler, etc. Although virtual reality is very exciting and interesting for generation Z, it is still under research due to high barriers. But, augmented reality is all set with its viral Pokemon-Go effect.
#4 Digital Twin: The Business Insider
Digital twin is a positive catalyst in the digital transformation journey that accelerates the change through innovation and integration. It virtually represents the retail process, and exploits Internet of Things (IoT) in pulling together and analyzing data, that in turn predict future business scenarios. To put it simple, it mines deep information through replication and comes up with even deeper insights.
#5 Blockchain: The Worlds Connector
Blockchain has stepped forward in retail industry with its safe and secure transactions via blockchain credit cards to retain the hard-earned, but easily lost consumer trust. Besides security, blockchain also covers transparency, usability, reliability and anti-counterfeiting under its feature umbrella. While blockchain based platform Provenance traces the origin and history of products for manufacturer, supplier, dealer and even end customer, Block Verify continues to certify genuine goods over plagued ones. Not only these, many more including Warranteer, Wave, etc. continue to revolutionize the global supply chain.
#6 Adaptive Security: The Preconditioned Freedom
Adaptive security platforms spot any suspicious or “out of the ordinary” patterned activities in retail transaction systems leveraging advanced analytics and embedded machine learning algorithms based on context, evidence, mechanism, implication, indicator and actionable advice on threat. It also ensures flexibility and scalability in terms of monitoring and counter-threat coverages. To process transactions in real time, adaptive security platforms require a lot of sharing and correlated functioning.
To sum up, the future of retail in 2017 would be propelling the practical implementation of experience-enhancing technologies like AI (Artificial Intelligence), ML (Machine Learning) and AR (Augmented Reality). So, it’s high time for every retailer to add this tech magic in their retail value chain and be the first in the industry, to gift an interactive world in the palm of the final stakeholder – THE CUSTOMER.
Step forward towards a detailed retail…