In January, retail visionaries from all over the world came together in New York City at NRF 2014 to collaborate around the rapid innovation happening in the industry. The focus for Intel at “Retail’s BIG Show” was the broad diversity of retail environments – in-store, online, and on mobile – where solutions are available today to help shoppers explore, dream, and connect with their favorite brands. It’s exciting to see the Internet of Things (IoT) is enabling retailers to deliver more entertaining, relevant, and personalized brand experiences by connecting devices with the cloud and tapping the power of big data and analytics. The potential applications in retail are limitless. But these new solutions will only succeed if shoppers know that their privacy is being protected as they engage with the technology.
When it comes to personalized technology in retail, it’s our job in the industry to explain exactly how personal data is being used, and importantly – not being used. While we provide the exciting new “wow” retail experiences, we also have to provide the “how.” For example, with Intel® AIM Suite, it’s important for retailers and shoppers to understand that user data is completely anonymous and never recorded. This technology works by recognizing the gender and approximate age of the consumer in front of a digital sign, allowing retailers to deliver more relevant advertisements. This is a “win-win” for both consumer and retailer.
With the proliferation of mobile devices, shopping can happen anywhere these days and brick-and-mortar stores should embrace mobility, not only to empower their sales force and untether them from the POS counter, but also to embrace the fact that shoppers use mobile devices in their stores. Solutions like the MemoryMirror* from MemoMi and technology from ACTV8.ME empower shoppers to compare outfits and collect coupons from digital signs to redeem at check-out. Beneficial solutions like these help motivate consumers to visit their favorite retail store locations. Technology Intel has developed to be integrated into a retailer’s app not only understands the general context of the user’s interests; it also lets the consumer control what information is released to the retailer. Data like name, phone number and address is never captured or shared.
We at Intel strongly believe that protecting consumer privacy is paramount. We also believe that it’s possible to develop new and valuable technologies while protecting privacy and securing user data. Communication is key to empowering consumers and retailers with the knowledge they need to navigate the wide world of retail technology solutions available today.