More Retailers Tracking Shoppers with Sensor Technologies

Sensor devices used to track shoppers are becoming more commonplace in shopping malls this holiday season. The devices, often scattered through malls to identify shoppers’ movements, help retailers track how long people are waiting in line and pinpoint where they’re shopping. Some even use heat maps to show where within a store most people are gravitating. The Future of Privacy Forum estimates that approximately 1,000 retailers are using sensors. Continue reading More Retailers Tracking Shoppers with Sensor Technologies

IBM’s Watson Tech Behind Three New Apps Coming in 2014

IBM’s Watson technology, known for beating out human competitors on the game show “Jeopardy!,” is playing a big role in a number of apps coming out next year. The first three known apps will come from IBM business partners Fluid, MD Buyline and Welltok. Each respective app uses Watson’s access to Big Data to provide users with information that will allow them to make informed decisions about their purchases and even their health needs. Continue reading IBM’s Watson Tech Behind Three New Apps Coming in 2014

The Return of Cast Commercials: TV Stars Pitching Products

Recalling the golden age of radio and the early years of television, advertisers are once again embracing cast commercials — or advertisements featuring actors in-character promoting products and companies. NBCUniversal is lending its actors to promote the 2014 Jeep Cherokee. Likewise, ABC has done the same in the past year for Target commercials. The “editorial-styled” approach is thought to be a softer, more enjoyable sell for viewers. Continue reading The Return of Cast Commercials: TV Stars Pitching Products

Thanksgiving and Black Friday Experience Record Mobile Sales

Yesterday we reported that tablets were the most popular CE device during the holiday weekend shopping surge and Apple’s iPad led the charge at retailers such as Target and Walmart. According to Adobe’s Digital Index 2013 report, new records were set for Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday. More than 24 percent of online sales occurred via smartphones and tablets, a year-over-year increase of 118 percent. In addition, iOS devices drove more than $543 million in online sales. Continue reading Thanksgiving and Black Friday Experience Record Mobile Sales

Jeff Bezos Reveals Amazon’s Plans for Drone Delivery Service

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos revealed some significant plans for the company on “60 Minutes” this week. In the not-too-distant future, Amazon plans to offer drone delivery service for its smaller packages headed for customers close to its distribution centers. Bezos expects packages weighing less than five pounds to be deliverable to addresses within a 10-mile radius by small helicopter-like devices. Amazon is calling the service “Prime Air.” Continue reading Jeff Bezos Reveals Amazon’s Plans for Drone Delivery Service

New Sensor Technologies Have Untapped Potential in Retail

Embedded sensor technology has proven to be useful in a number of markets, but some are saying it can revolutionize the retail experience for both companies and consumers if used to its full potential. Though online retail is booming in popularity, many transactions still take place inside physical stores, often with the aid of a mobile device. By linking up those factors, shoppers’ experiences will be more productive, and companies will benefit with greater profits. Continue reading New Sensor Technologies Have Untapped Potential in Retail

Black Friday: Apple iPad a Big Winner at Target and Walmart

Forbes reports that Apple was a big winner on Black Friday. The article notes that InfoScout reviewed more than 90,000 shopping receipts in the U.S. and learned that Apple products accounted for 22 percent of Target’s sales on Black Friday. The iPad Air 16GB, iPad mini 16GB and iPad Air 32GB models were the number one, two and three sellers, respectively. Additionally, the iPad mini 16GB model was the number one seller at Walmart. Continue reading Black Friday: Apple iPad a Big Winner at Target and Walmart

Amazon Opens Pop-Up Stores to Market Tablets and E-Readers

Seattle-based Amazon is promoting Kindle tablets and e-readers in a pop-up shop in a San Francisco mall, providing a glimpse at what the online retailer could look like in a physical space. Amazon is also offering devices, branded covers and power adapters via vending machines. While Amazon has been expected by some to follow Apple and Microsoft in opening brick-and-mortar storefronts, the company said it has no immediate plans to do so. Continue reading Amazon Opens Pop-Up Stores to Market Tablets and E-Readers

Holiday Shopping Takes a Mobile Turn, Companies Respond

Cyber Monday, one of the busiest online commerce days of the year, is now extending to the rest of the holiday season. Consumers are no longer waiting until the Monday after Thanksgiving to surf the Web for deals. Rather, utilizing their tablets and smartphones, consumers are shopping online for a longer stretch. This is forcing companies like Amazon and eBay to compete with retailers to attract online buyers both before and after Cyber Monday. Continue reading Holiday Shopping Takes a Mobile Turn, Companies Respond

Microsoft Sells One Million Xbox One Consoles on First Day

We recently reported that Sony’s PlayStation 4 sold more than one million units in its first 24 hours of availability. Now, Microsoft has made the same claim with the launch of its Xbox One console on November 22. While the sales figures set a new record for Microsoft, easily defeating first day sales of its Xbox 360, the Xbox One launched in 11 more countries than the PS4. Both companies are expected to sell 3 million units by the end of the year. Continue reading Microsoft Sells One Million Xbox One Consoles on First Day

Polyvore Drives More Social Traffic Than Pinterest and Twitter

“Discover, shop, and express your style” is the slogan for Polyvore, an online global community that has created over 80 million collage-like “sets,” designed to give everyone a voice in shaping trends and influencing purchases. While it may not be a household name yet, the social network drives disproportionate amounts of social revenue. At 20 percent, it drives more social traffic than Pinterest (15 percent) and four times that of Twitter (5 percent). Continue reading Polyvore Drives More Social Traffic Than Pinterest and Twitter

Macy’s is First Major Retailer to Use Apple’s iBeacon Tech

When Apple released iOS 7 in June, the company incorporated a proximity-based service called iBeacon that is now being used in retail stores. Mobile retail app developer Shopkick recently announced a service called ShopBeacon that uses iBeacon technology to track customers when they enter and move around the store, and allows the business itself to interact with the customers as they shop. ShopBeacon’s first official trial partner is Macy’s. Continue reading Macy’s is First Major Retailer to Use Apple’s iBeacon Tech

Google Unveils New Prepaid Debit Card Using Google Wallet

Google is now offering a prepaid debit card that can be used in stores and at ATMs. Using Google Wallet, consumers will be able to access funds just like they would with a regular debit card. The Wallet Card will be accepted wherever MasterCard is accepted, and is free without any monthly fees. The card will also provide Google with consumer information like what was purchased and for how much — even the name and address of the consumer would be recorded. Continue reading Google Unveils New Prepaid Debit Card Using Google Wallet

Wonderlabs: Google Promotes Devices in Pop-Up Showrooms

Google is opening temporary showrooms in six U.S. cities to display and promote its latest gadgets. Consumers can visit the holiday-themed pop-up stores, dubbed “Winter Wonderlabs,” to check out devices such as the Nexus 7 tablet, Google’s Chromebook laptops and the digital TV receiver Chromecast. The Winter Wonderlab in Canoga Park opened over the weekend. Additional locations include Chicago, New York City, Sacramento, Washington DC, and Paramus, NJ. Continue reading Wonderlabs: Google Promotes Devices in Pop-Up Showrooms

Sony Sells One Million PlayStation 4 Consoles on First Day

Sony sold more than one million units of the new PlayStation 4 on the first day of the highly anticipated video game console’s availability. Fans lined up outside retailers such as GameStop Friday evening, while Best Buy and Amazon reported on their websites that initial inventory had sold out. Some stores had only enough supplies to fill pre-orders, which left a number of consumers empty-handed. Sony projects it will sell five million units by March. Continue reading Sony Sells One Million PlayStation 4 Consoles on First Day

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