IBM comes to offline retailers’ rescue with smart mirror technology in India, says GlobalData

Following the news that tech giant IBM is working on ‘smart mirror’ technology to enhance the shopping experience of consumers and facilitate informed decision making for offline retailers,

Shagun Sachdeva, Consumer Insights Analyst at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers her view:

“The move comes at a time when offline retailers are facing the onslaught of key e-commerce operators such as Amazon, eBay and Walmart. As offline retailors try to match up with their online counterparts by embracing and experimenting with digital technologies, IBM plans to capitalize on the opportunity by collaborating with brick-and-mortar retailers and adding innovation to offline retail. To begin with, the company is launching the technology by collaborating with Vero Moda stores and intends to tie up with a broader ecosystem of offline retailers in the near future.

“The innovative technology, which is a digital interface that relies on artificial intelligence (AI), not only offers efficacy in supply chain by bridging the gap between the customer and merchandiser but also provides a distinct shopping experience to the customers by helping them to understand specific product attributes with high level of personalization and interactive fitting room.

“IBM aims to build AI-based fashion taxonomy platform to analyze on-going fashion trends in terms of various categories such as color, print and style by integrating data from multiple platforms such as social media, blogs, product catalogs and others, and predict future fashion trends. Simply put, the ‘smart mirror’ technology assists in aggregating and analyzing sales data such as why a particular product did not sell well and allows real-time decision making by the merchandisers, designers and retailers in line with the evolving consumer demand, especially from millennials.”

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