NRF 2020: Retail technology trends and deals

Suppliers at the NRF 2020 — National Retail Federation’s annual Big Show and Expo in New York – have announced several retail technology deals, indicating that innovation is the key to improve customer experience.
NRF 2020

Total e-commerce revenue in 2020 will reach $3.52 trillion, an explosion that will force retailers to find faster and more convenient modes to reach the final mile and yard, according to tech market advisory firm, ABI Research.

There is increasing convergence of online and in-store businesses, with brick and mortar positioned as hubs closer to the customer, as well as e-commerce sites directing package delivery to retail outlets. Additive investment will grow in Buy Online Pay in Store (BOPIS) options.

Alibaba and JD.com have focus on growth through lower-tier cities, chasing fast growing, third place Pinduoduo’s rural playbook to reach the next 600 million people. Singles Day in China for 2020 will surpass not only all of the U.S. retail holidays (Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday), but 2019’s record-setting US$38.4 billion for Alibaba alone, at a 26 percent increase.

Retailers need to address their increasing costs and consumer expectations through new business models and optimized transportation and logistics methods. Amazon already felt the financial pressure in 2019, with North American margin compression, as it grew investments in its next-day Prime delivery, expected to impact Walmart as well.

Deals at NRF 2020

Johnson Controls announced its retail solutions portfolio, Sensormatic Solutions, and Intel will partner to deliver AI-powered solutions for retailers. Sensormatic Solutions will also leverage Intel Distribution of OpenVINO toolkit as well as Intel models for delivering its retail solutions.

JRNI, a software-as-a-service scheduling platform, and Radius8, a localization company, announced a partnership that enables retailers to offer location-based appointment scheduling for their customers.

Madix, a retail shelves manufacturer in North America, and Shekel Brainweigh, a supplier of weighing technology, announced the availability of ready-made Product Aware shelves and solutions for the retail industry. The companies will launch Soter, a new concept Smart Shelf and Smart Safe, which cuts labor costs and reduces shrinkage by electronically securing high-risk SKUs.

Position Imaging, a logistics fulfillment and asset tracking supplier, showcased its iPickup single zone solution in the NRF Innovation Lab. The solution uses computer vision and laser guidance to simplify and expedite item retrieval for customers who buy online and pick up in store (BOPIS).

Apex is introducing Axcess Click & Collect Solution, an automated smart locker solution, to provide configurable touchscreen monitor with dynamic graphic user interface (UI) while expanding the flexibility of compartment sizes and configurations for retailers.

OneView Commerce, a retail-as-a-service platform, announced collaboration with Microsoft to enable intelligent retail with Microsoft Azure.

New Generation Computing, a supplier of digital supply chain solutions, revealed that Jerry Leigh of California, a clothing manufacturer and brand management company, will upgrade to NGC’s Andromeda Cloud Platform.

McFadyen Digital, a supplier of eCommerce and online marketplace solutions, announced the creation of a popup autonomous retail-as-a-service (PARaaS) platform known as Cartable for retail, grocery, B2B and military verticals.

Zebra Technologies introduced SmartSight, an intelligent automation solution that improves front-of-store operations and enhances the shopper experience at mass merchants, grocers, and supermarkets/hypermarkets.

Inference Solutions, a supplier of Intelligent Virtual Agents (IVAs), announced that Stein Mart is using the Inference platform to enable its Buy Online, Pickup In Store (BOPIS) experience. The national retailer expects about 15 percent of its online orders to shift to in-store pickup.

Shekel Scales, a supplier of AI-powered advanced weighing solutions, introduced Shekel Visual Recognition (SVR), embedded with Edgify’s machine-learning training framework. The solution leverages EdgeX to provide retailers access to data for real-time analytics to significantly reduce loss at the point-of-sale (POS) and improve customers’ experiences at checkout.

Samsung Electronics America is featuring its retail innovations to help brick-and-mortar retailers reinvent the in-store experience for customers.

Samsung Electronics America is working with Microsoft and Verizon to bring the Samsung Galaxy XCover Pro to the U.S. market. The device will enable frontline workers to accelerate the adoption of mobile-first vertical solutions for enterprise and SMB customers.

Scandit, a technology platform for mobile computer vision and augmented reality (AR), said that its range of barcode scanning software products will receive an update specifically for the new Samsung Galaxy XCover Pro.

Adroit Worldwide Media, a vision technology company, has partnered with Microsoft to enable intelligent retail with their autonomous shopping solution, AWM Frictionless.

AWM Frictionless provides convenience to consumers by allowing them to shop as normal and then check out by simply walking out of the store.

Intel announced a collaboration with AREA15, one of the first purpose-built experiential retail and entertainment complexes.

ProGlove, a wearables supplier, has partnered with Samsung Electronics America, to launch a combined product solution to address the need for wearable scanners in industries ranging from retail, transportation, logistics, and manufacturing.

The solution consists of ProGlove’s MARK wearable barcode scanners and Samsung’s latest ruggedized smartphone for business — Galaxy XCover Pro — enabling consistent traceability and increased user comfort.

Shekel Brainweigh, a weighing technology supplier, and Hitachi unveiled Capsule, the world’s first framework for cost-effective autonomous micro-market solution based on Hitachi’s LiDAR sensors and Shekel’s Product Aware Shelves.

Stratham, NH based Position Imaging, a pioneer in logistics fulfillment and asset tracking, announced a partnership with Omaha, NE based Lozier, the leading manufacturer of retail store fixtures.

Medallia, an experience management company, announced retailers DICK’S Sporting Goods, AkzoNobel and Smashburger have selected Medallia Experience Cloud to turn shoppers into brand promoters and diners into loyalists.

Marks & Spencer, a leading retailer with more than 80,000 colleagues, has selected JDA and partner REPL to deploy JDA Workforce Management and Microsoft Teams to ensure that at each of its 700 stores it has the right colleague working the right shift at the right time.

Mercatus, a supplier of digital commerce solutions, announced that Brookshire Grocery and Weis Markets will be using the Mercatus AisleOne personalization intelligence engine to enhance the shopping experience for online grocery shoppers and boost engagement to improve customer satisfaction.

Ceridian, a human capital management (HCM) company, will exhibit Dayforce innovations that help retailers increase performance and profitability at National Retail Federation’s Big Show 2020 from January 12-14 in New York City.

Opterus, a provider of store communications and task management solutions, announced Southeastern Grocers, one of the largest conventional supermarket companies in the U.S. with operating banners including BI-LO, Fresco y Mas, Harveys Supermarkets, and Winn-Dixie stores, has chosen Opterus OpsCenter as its centralized communications solution.