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DeptStoreMacy

Over the last several months I have had the pleasure of spending time with Asset Protection (AP) leaders at Macy's in New York. The visits were sparked by news articles and industry discussions on their advanced deployments of RFID and the smart integration of this Internet-of-Things (IoT) technology into the loss prevention function. 

The Retail Benefits of RFID

The primary driver for the deployment of RFID is to improve inventory accuracy. Generically, across the retail industry, "RFID enables cycle counts to be completed about 25 times faster than traditional manual bar code scanning. Frequent, accurate cycle counts improve inventory accuracy, typically by 20 to 30 percent, allowing a number of retailers to achieve 99 percent inventory accuracy. This enables replenishment alerts to be reliably generated, increasing on-floor availability, and decreasing out-of-stocks (OOS), typically by 15 to 30 percent. This in turn results in sales uplift in the range of 1 to 10 percent or more for those categories."

While inventory visibility is the number one benefit of RFID, in multiple industry studies, loss prevention is always near the top as a primary application. Here is an example from the 2018 Technology Outlook in the Apparel Market research.

 

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Each Saturday just prior to the January NRF Big Show, retailers, industry analysts and solutions providers gather in New York City for a unique IT conference. This fast-paced full day is a special blend of emotionally filled stories of the RetailROI (Retail Orphan Initiative) global charity work and the latest insights on the state of the retail industry.  

From this year's SuperSaturday edition, here is a summary of the altruistic work of RetailROI, the latest research on the 2019 essential retail technologies, and an inspirational close on the power of branding transformation. 

A RetailROI Difference

 

38,000+ Attendees, 16,000+ Retailers, 800+ Exhibitors, 100+ Sessions, 99 Countries

NRF2019V2

Let me open by sharing the video summary provided by the USA National Retail Federation (NRF) of this year's edition. 

This entire week, over all my social media platforms, I am publishing multiple other NRF 2019 summary reviews. Primarily from an Expo floor perspective where billions of innovation dollars are being invested, here are my impactful retail transformational takeaways.

IoT is not Just a Buzzword

NRF 2019 confirmed that the Internet-of-Things (IoT) is moving from a buzzword to solving industry problems. Solutions were visible all over the Expo floor.

 

NikeHouseofInnovation

The future of retail includes digitally supported leadership branding coupled with hyper-personalized immersive consumer experiences. Of all the stores that I have visited to date around the world, the Nike House of Innovation in New York City, is the closest example that meets this critical futurist success formula. 

Covering over 68,000 square feet (6,373 square meters), this new Nike flagship offers six floors of differentiated physical to digital experiences.  Each floor could be a store of its own. Combined, this location is designed to meet the ever changing needs of a digitally empowered consumer. 

Before taking a virtual tour of the store, let's remind ourselves of why shoppers buy in physical stores (IHL study):

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The Smartphone as the Portal to the Physical Store

 

Happy New Year

Welcome to an uncertain and conceivably risky 2019. Despite multiple global hints of slower growth, I remain optimistic by the potential of the New Year. 

On the horizon are multiple statistical landmarks that will "concentrate our minds". In 2019, half of the world will be online, India's GDP will overtake that of the UK, Nigeria's population will reach 200 million, and in USA millennials will outnumber baby-boomers to become the country's largest generation for the first time. 

Inspired by one my favorite annual Economist editions, "The World in 2019", this post summarizes important global economic forecasts and looks at a few emerging risks. Timely to the upcoming NRF 2019 in New York, we will also discuss expected technology disruption and the positive prospects for the global retail industry in the New Year. 

Economic Indicators Point to Continued Global Growth

 

Amazon4Star1aThis past week had the opportunity to visit the new Amazon Four-Star physical retail store in New York City. Located in the chic Soho neighborhood, collectively the items in this store have an average rating of 4.4 stars. 

Visually let's walk through the store, read some early reviews, and understand why this is a worthy customer experience experiment on the road to the future of retail. 

The Four-Star Reviews Are In

"It had $20 kitchen mittens resembling dog paws, $16 USB cables, a corn kernel stripper for $7.99, a $15 mug that reads “Believe in yourself.” Oh, and some Alexa stuff...sell quirky, random items - not low-price, everyday household goods - i.e. it isn't directly competing with Walmart or Target." - BuzzFeed

 

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Originally published as a four-part series, this is the long-read version consolidating the latest research of the global forward march of facial recognition technologies. From Apple normalizing its acceptance, to disruption in the retail / security / healthcare industries, to the emergence of China as the FaceID innovation laboratory, and the ever-growing new global applications, we stare into your auspicious Internet of Things (IoT) future. 

Your Face is The Next Computer Cookie

face id dystopia

In January 2018, in a D&D Daily "Live from NY" interview, we debated the impact of iPhoneX on FaceID technologies. This new Apple iPhoneX had just placed the disruptive future of facial recognition technology in our pockets.

Less than a year later, it is surprising to observe the continued advanced deployments of FaceID solutions, especially outside the United States. For 2018, the global facial recognition market is valued at $3.97 billion and is estimated to reach $10.15 billion by 2025 at a CAGR of 14.35% during the forecast period. 

Unlocking Smartphones with Your Face is Only the Beginning

 

The Surprising Global Forward March of Facial Recognition - Part 4

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In Part 1, we introduced your face as the next computer cookie and discussed USA/UK retail applications.

In Part 2, we faced the reality that more FaceID disruptions is coming to the security industry, introduced healthcare applications, and concluded with GAFAM (Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon, and Microsoft) investments.

In Part 3, we traveled to China, THE world's leading face recognition innovation laboratory. 

In this Part 4, we look at the growing list of emerging FaceID applications, introduce defeating technologies, discuss privacy, and close the series with insights on our digitally connected future. The genie on the potential disruption and business opportunities of face recognition solutions is out of the global bottle. 

The Face of an Increasingly Digital World

 

The Surprising Global Forward March of Facial Recognition - Part 3 

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China is now THE world FaceID innovation laboratory. Country is installing over 600 million CCTV cameras, see the fining of jaywalkers through video, the pace of Asia digital retail change, and face recognition being deployed in 11,000 7-Eleven stores in Thailand. 

These Cool Sunglasses Just FaceID You

 

FacialRecognition1

In Part 1 of this FaceID article series, we explored retail applications in USA / UK and were introduced to the face as the next computer cookie. Part 2 introduces us to GAFAM and face recognition in the security and health care industry sectors. 

Security has been a primary market for face recognition for some time. Threats of terrorism and violent crime have accelerated its adoption by governments and law enforcement worldwide.

STOP, I Can Digitally See You Now 

With a 25% CAGR, the security sector is leading facial recognition deployments worldwide. 

From London, Tokyo, Helsinki, Rome and now to Atlanta in USA, airports worldwide are adopting FaceID solutions. Delta Airlines will soon roll out ' curb to gate' facial recognition for travelers departing out of the International Terminal F in Atlanta, the first biometric terminal in the United States. Smile for the camera at self-service check-in including baggage, through security checkpoints, and boarding your flight. Using the technology is optional and will save travelers up to nine minutes per flight.