Ever come home from the grocery store and realize you’ve forgotten to buy the milk? Or maybe you missed out on some super deal. That could soon be history for some lucky shoppers in China.
SK Telecom is carrying out a pilot program in China’s Shanghai’s Lotus Supermarkets, testing the so called ‘SmartCart’, aiming at making shopping easier, faster, cheaper and more enjoyable.
The SmartCart is equipped with a tablet PC that can sync with your smartphone, providing tips, discounts, product info in real time, while you’re walking through the supermarket. Shoppers first have to download the company ‘SmartCart’ app and afterwards create their own shopping list. The tablet identifies shoppers’ location and alerts them when they approach a product that offers discounts, informs them about existing store coupons or leads the customers towards the products on their shopping list, by pointing which goods are on which aisles.
We expect that ‘smart cart’ will become a more personalized smart shopping service when combined with customer information– like shopping history and usage pattern– managed by existing retailers. Customers will shop conveniently through product recommendations based on analysis of user’s shopping history and location information; manufacturers will be able to carry out targeted marketing for customers located in the store; and retailers will secure a new marketing channel that enables integrated and seamless communication with customers.
When checking out, the tablet’s screen displays the purchased products, available coupons as well as membership points, if any.
The SmartCart is in a conceptual stage but it could soon be real and even successful, despite the high costs that would require putting a tablet on each cart. High-tech shopping to remind you to buy the milk.