There has been a lot of noise recently about the Internet of Things (IoT). While this is very much aimed at consumers at present, there is also huge potential for corporates, SMBs and retailers, amongst others. One other trend has been the emerging use of digital signage and this also has a link to IoT.
We have seen an increased uptake of large format displays (LFDs) and dynamic signage. However, when talking to channel partners, it seems that the displays requested do not necessarily need to be particularly large, rather it is more important that they include interactive features.
These have been used by brands to promote their goods interactively in smaller kiosks. The displays are more appealing to the customer, and easier for the brand and kiosk owner to update and maintain. They are easy to roll out and with costs of these monitors dropping, they are also more affordable.
On a totally different scale, we had the pleasure of visiting the ‘supermarket of the future’ while at EXPO 2015 in Milan. This had a multitude of interactive displays in action. Customers may use a touch screen to find out more details about the product they are interested in, or view large screens that display standard product and pricing information until they pick up an item – the display then changes accordingly giving the buyer specific product information like place or region of origin, carbon footprint or nutritional values.
These examples show how the “future” is already much closer to today’s’ technologies, and this also highlights the benefits of smart retail experiences and smart fridges that can tell you what ingredients you still have available and are usually connected to the Internet of Things.
Last but certainly not least, the future would not be complete without the perfectly shaped pasta that you might want to order from your shop for a special occasion: freshly printed to your favourite design or whatever 3D-shape you may have in mind.