Adobe, which has been pushing to succeed in the retail analytics market, is selling customers on a prototype “Store of the Future” that features RFID chip-enabled shopping bags that allow users to purchase items just by putting their bags on a checkout counter.
Today, Adobe opens a prototype store in Las Vegas that is intended to showcase numerous trends in retail that brick-and-mortar stores are borrowing from online retailers: analytics of in-store customers, real-time metrics on inventory, and RFID tags on clothing that allow items to be tracked throughout the store.
Produced by a startup named Twyst, which markets them as “Smart Internet Connected Bags,” the bags automatically inventory any items put in them, and then charge a customer’s credit card when they exit the store.
The version that I saw consisted of a large shopping bag with a second bag contained within it.
Adobe’s director of retail industry strategy, was careful to emphasize that customers can remain anonymous, those whom he described as “Known shoppers” can interact with touch screens in the store, get custom discounts, order items not in stock to be shipped to them, and browse look books.
Beacons in the store help the retailer identify the customer, which is where Adobe and their competitors‘ backend analytics kick in.
Many of the technologies on display at the demonstration were also seen at recent trade shows such as the NRF Retail Big Show, and exemplify how brick-and-mortar retailers have been forced to adapt after almost two decades of losing market share to data-driven digital rivals like Amazon and eBay.