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Concept Store Delivers Product Content via NFC, RFID
McKinsey and Mall of America have teamed up to offer a store where shoppers can explore content about products using hot spots, touch screens and magic mirrors, along with UHF RFID-based inventory management.
Dec 30, 2019—
Mall of America's shoppers are browsing through products at a new high-tech concept store known as the Modern Retail Collective, which serves as a bridge between digital and physical shopping. The concept store, provided by management consulting company McKinsey, and Mall of America, enables a series of retailers to promote and sell their products for limited times. With touch screens, a magic mirror and mobile "hot spots," the store also serves as a laboratory for new technologies.
Near Field Communication (NFC) tags provide a link between digital shopping and the physical store, by delivering content to shoppers on site as they browse through goods. The NFC RFID tags serve as the store's hot spots, where customers can tap tags to learn more about a product, thereby making the shopping experience more interactive. The system leverages Smartrac NFC 13.56 MHz tags compliant with the ISO 14443 standard.
The first installment of the concept store allows Mall of America's shoppers to interact with and purchase products from Elevé Cosmetics, Kendra Scott, ThirdLove and type:A Deodorant. This first installment of the store is focused on products for women, from brands founded by women. That theme, Hough says, is something of which the company is quite proud. "We're also excited to bring some digitally native brands to physical stores," she states, "so that customers can interact with them in a new way."
In addition to NFC-enabled hot spots, the store features digital screens throughout the sales floor on which content can be viewed, while magic mirrors allow shoppers to view the products they try on with other accessories. With the use of hot spots, the store is designed to enable patrons to browse through content about specific products. McKinsey applied NFC-enabled labels throughout the store to uniquely identify each product. The goal was to allow shoppers to access the types of data on their smartphones that they could typically find online, and without the need for an app.
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