Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Retail Technology News: April update

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Jack in the Box is creating a digital “Store of the Future.”

Retailers in April focused technology efforts in areas including the metaverse, next-gen warehouse and store solutions, and AI.

Here are some of the most noteworthy and innovative technology stories as reported by Chain Store Age in April, starting with the most recent. 

Walmart makes Roblox history with ‘real-world’ sales Walmart is stepping up its metaverse commerce efforts with a groundbreaking initiative on the popular Roblox immersive gaming platform. The discount giant, which initially debuted in the metaverse by launching two new metaverse experiences on Roblox in September 2022, is now the first entity to sell select “real-world” items on Roblox.

Biden signs potential U.S. TikTok ban into law A provision of a Senate bill authorizing $95 billion in military aid to Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan which President Joe Biden signed into law on Wednesday, April 24, 2024 requires TikTok’s Chinese owner ByteDance to divest its U.S. TikTok operation in 270 days, or else U.S. app stores and Internet hosting services will not be allowed to support TikTok or any other ByteDance apps.  

comScore: Online retail sales break record with $1.3 trillion in 2023 U.S. consumers spent $1.3 trillion online in 2023 — or about  $1 trillion more than they did in 2013, when online spending totaled $235 billion, according to the comScore “State of Digital Commerce” study.

JLL debuts virtual spokesperson at 13 shopping centers Real estate management and investment firm JLL has developed and launched a virtual shopper named Cindy at 13 shopping centers across the country. An extension of the Imaginuity Pylot digital marketing platform, Cindy is designed to have multi-ethnic characteristics that customers can find relatable.

Best Buy offers virtual design app for Apple Vision Pro Best Buy Co. Inc. is enabling customers to visualize how products would look in their home with augmented reality (AR) technology. The retailer is releasing a new app called “Best Buy Envision” it developed exclusively for Apple Vision Pro, which is controlled by a user’s eyes and hands. 

EXCLUSIVE: First Look at Amazon’s new robotic fulfillment hub in Mass. Amazon is now operating a robotic fulfillment center in Massachusetts, streamlining the delivery of sortable items in the Northeast U.S.

JCPenney doubles rewards earnings rate in program revamp JCPenney is launching a new free loyalty offering that includes a credit card component. The JCPenney Rewards and Credit Program will also let members reach rewards up to two times faster.

Jack in the Box launches digital ‘store of the future’ initiative Jack in the Box Inc. is modernizing all of its Jack in the Box and Del Taco restaurants with cloud-based omnichannel capabilities. Theretailer is deploying the Qu cloud-based unified commerce platform to enable digital solutions and offerings in its stores.

Home Depot optimizes customer experience, operations with Google Cloud The Home Depot is expanding the reach of a partnership with Google Cloud that began in 2015. It is now utilizing Google Cloud’s artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities in the enterprise areas of customer experience and operations. 

eBay personalizes apparel shopping with generative AI eBay is rolling out “Shop the look,” a tool based on generative AI that provides an immersive carousel of suggested outfits, tailored to customers’ shopping history. It includes interactive hotspots that reveal similar new and pre-owned apparel and luxury items that can be combined into outfits.

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