SK Telecom, Lotte smarten up shopping with Smart Department Store

sk telecom lotte smart department store

SK Telecom has partnered with Lotte Department Store to create a “Smart Department Store”, a package of smart shopping solutions designed to enable a smart shopping environment and revolutionize people’s shopping experience.

Deployed at the Lotte Department Store Bundang Branch, the Smart Department Store solution comprises:

  • Smart Shopper, an omni-channel platform that enables cartless shopping
  • Smart Table, a table built with a multi-touch screen that offers diverse shopping information
  • Smart Locker, a storage cabinet that can be used via a mobile phone.

Smart Shopper is an omni-channel platform built with advanced ICT – i.e. barcode scanning, Near Field Communication (NFC) and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technologies – to enhance customers’ shopping experience at large retail stores. To begin shopping, customers pick up a Shopper Scanner (a designated barcode scanning device) instead of a bulky shopping cart at the rental kiosk located at the entrance. With the 16-centimeter bar-type device, users can read barcodes on items to add them to their own virtual shopping carts.

Also while shopping, they can check and edit items in their shopping carts at large touch screen devices called Order Viewers installed in several spots within the store.

In the fourth quarter of 2016, SK Telecom and Lotte Department Store plan to add more advanced features to these devices so that they can provide detailed information on fresh products being sold at the store – e.g. place of origin, production traceability, stock availability, etc – to increase product reliability and serve as a virtual display stand for bulky, hard-to-display items.

Once they are done shopping, customers can walk up to a self-checkout kiosk named Smart Checkout, instead of the existing POS checkout counters, and place their device on the NFC-enabled “Smart Dongle” to confirm selected items, the total amount and make payment. They no longer have to wait in a long line at the checkout counter, and the items they have purchased will then be delivered to their homes at the desired date and time, thus eliminating the cumbersome process of packing and carrying groceries.

Apart from the benefits to shoppers, Smart Shopper also allows retailers to use their space in a more efficient manner, SK Telecom says. Instead of displaying a large amount of stock for each and every product, stores can place only a small stock of goods on their shelves, and can even sell non-displayed products virtually via barcodes. By analyzing customers’ shopping behavior using big data on their in-store movements and shopping history, retailers can launch customized marketing and offer real-time promotions to boost sales.

Going forward, by utilizing the BLE, speaker, and geo-fencing functionalities of Smart Scanner, retailers will be able to conduct on-site promotions, notifying customers with a voice or vibration notification when they are located in close vicinity of certain products.

Meanwhile, SK Telecom and Lotte Department Store installed ‘Smart Table’ and ‘Smart Locker’ this past July.

Developed by SK Telecom, Smart Table, built with large multi-touch screen monitor on its surface, is a next-generation computing device that allows multiple users to simultaneously perform diverse tasks – e.g. multimedia, search, work, etc. Smart Table not only offers UX optimized for intuitive UI developed by SK Telecom, but also boasts an advanced multi-user platform.

Installed on the first floor of the Bundang branch of Lotte Department Store, the multi-touch smart table provides a wide variety of services, including store guide, shopping-related news, cultural center information and entertainment, to enhance shoppers’ pleasure and convenience.

Smart Locker is a storage cabinet that can be used with a mobile phone. After choosing a locker they want to use on the touchscreen display, users are to enter their mobile phone number to receive a password with which they can open the locker. Smart Lockers installed in the Bundang branch are built as refrigerated cabinets to keep customer’s groceries fresh while they spend time in the department store. Going forward, the companies are planning to add new features to these lockers so that they can be booked and managed through a smartphone application.

After verifying the effectiveness of Smart Department Store currently running in the Bundang branch, SK Telecom and Lotte Department Store plan to expand its application to all 34 branches of Lotte Department Store across South Korea.

In addition, the two companies will continue to design the future of Smart Department Store by adding more features including Smart Signage, Smart Closet and video-based business intelligence system T-View.

Smart Signage refers to LED displays that can be installed on outer walls of department stores to promote products and events. Smart Closet is an interactive touchscreen display attached to empty spaces like walls or columns within the department store building to display items that are not physically placed at the store. Also, once tagged by a user’s smartphone, Smart Closet becomes synchronized with the shopping cart of the user’s account, thus enabling the user to review shopping cart and purchase history; search for items; and make new purchases.

“By combining ICT and shopping, we have successfully transformed the conventional department store into a smart shopping venue that offers new and unprecedented value and experience for customers,” said Kim Young-joo, Senior Vice President and Head of Enterprise Business Office of SK Telecom. “SK Telecom will continue to work closely with Lotte Department Store to lead a new shopping paradigm through innovative smart shopping solutions.”

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