The Future of Shopping: Some Retail Stores will probably look like this:

August 10, 2011

The success of Tesco’s new retail store in Korea is something to behold:

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Why? Because there is no physical store and no physical product. However the experience of the store has been fully recreated two dimensionally as a backlit poster with the products and ordering fulfilled using mobile and QR codes. It’s a neat idea and solves a number of issues:

1. The familiar supermarket experience. Tick!
2. Impulse shopping. Tick!
3. Cheap rent. Tick!
4. Open a new store in high traffic areas in one day. Tick!
5. No internal fit out costs. Tick!
6. No need to stock shelves Tick!
7. No Staff wages. Tick!
8. Open 24hrs. Tick!
The list goes on.

Personally I’d like to see NFC integration as well as QR codes. I think we can also expect to see these walls become screens rather than printed products in the very near future.

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Microsoft Tag reinvents the QR Code/Data Matrix

January 12, 2009

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Microsoft has released its answer to QR Codes and Data Matrixes with the appropriately named Microsoft Tag.

Using colours and shape-orientation, the tags are designed to display more information in a smaller place, as well as work when out of focus, which works a lot better with mobile devices where the focal distance is fixed.

Readers for many mobile phones (including the iPhone!) have been released and can be downloaded by browsing to http://gettag.mobi on your mobile device.

You can read more, and make your own tags at http://www.microsoft.com/tag/

I was very impressed with how well it worked on my iPhone. I’ve tried lots of QR/Data Matrix readers out but the poor quality of the camera in the iPhone has always let me down. The Tag worked without a hitch.

They’re still in beta, so no word on if there will eventually be a cost to use these.