THE INTERNET OF THINGS AND VIRTUALIZATION OF RETAIL
Retail trends will focus on the impact of the convergence and acceleration of technology, and the maturing mobile consumer on overall Retail discussing this pertinent aspect were few of the game-changers of the retail sector.
nfolding the session, Manish Nadir, Retail Capability Lead, Accenture and one of the co-chair of the session, addressed the delegates about the changes that have been witnessed as technology advanced in giant steps in the last few years. “The fashion industry is going to move fast forward from now on,” he said. “This is the era of retail virtualization.
Like Pulkit Trivedi of Facebook showed us today, smart phones are real and it has defi nitely been a disruptive phenomenon hitherto unseen by the Indian retail
Uindustry. Now, where we are heading to is towards living services, which is nothing but virtualization, and the time for the Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence,” he added.
Expectations of today’s consumers are changing. To put it simply, the consumer itself is changing and players and businesses have lifted up their technological interventions to stay relevant to the consumer. “So to meet these liquid expectations, retailers will have to think of ways to bring physical to digital, which in Accenture, we call living services,” explained Sandeep Rai Sharma, Managing Director, Accenture and the second co-chair of the session. “Living services are tailored around consumer preferences that are always changing. These services are not only highly customised to suit suit preferences, but are constantly evolving, just like the human race. Living services are going to constantly evolve, learn and adapt to the changing needs, weather, intents, references, and they are going to be dynamic unlike age old static experiences. And they are going to be all pervasive, highly proximate in our lives, day in and day out. And that’s where things like wear-ables are going to impact our lives everyday,” he added.
Talking about the relevance of living services to contemporary retailers and fashion businesses, Sharma pointed out, “We have seen unmatched technological advancements in the last 20 years, the world adapting to digital from physical, etc., but what we are going to experience over the next 5-10 years will dwarf what we have previously experienced.” True! The growth of connected devices, Internet of Things, beacons, sensors, proximity devices, cloud computing, big data, etc., are set to give the fashion retail fraternity much more insights not just of consumer segments at a large level but also very personal insights about each and every single shopper. “AI (artificial intelligence) is the new UI (user interface), added Sandeep Rai Sharma.
Senior Vice President, Information
Technology, Landmark Group
–Sandeep Rai Sharma Managing Director,
–Prashant Gupta President & CEO,