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AI plus AR equals happy customers

7 January, 2022


I remember the intense global debate about the retail apocalypse, the end of the physical store, and the rise of online sales. In the end, both statements were half-hearted because what has happened is that the frontier between the two "worlds" has blurred thanks to technology. Within the wide range of technologies that have contributed to this new scenario, we will highlight Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Augmented Reality (AR).

On the one hand we have AI and its enormous array of tools. We can finally recognize consumer buying patterns, but not statistically analyzed for one store or chain of stores, but by aggregating data from all establishments in the same sector in an anonymized way, and determining the behavior of those consumers in an automated way. Thanks to AI, and this evolving information as consumer models are refined through machine learning, personalized shopping experiences can be delivered no longer to a specific target audience, but in a hyper-personalized way. Let's take as an example a loyalty app where a customer has given their data, which shows each app using the best shopping recommendations, items, and content that enhance that user's experience within a physical store or any retail chain. It is not about privacy intrusion, it is about improving the customer experience by "automatically curating" for him the information that may really interest him.

On the other hand, we have augmented reality, which, reducing the concept to its minimum expression and simplifying it as much as possible, would be to browse a physical store as if it were an online platform. Pointing a smartphone at an aisle of an establishment and displaying navigation guides to a product of interest or showing animations, augmented information when viewing product labels, or showing multimedia elements superimposed on a real image, are just some examples of the applications that AR technology can offer retailers to provide a better customer experience. Physical and virtual space are united in the same interface.

In the end, the application of technology in retail should always be treated as a means and not as a goal. It goes without saying at this point that the focus should be on the customer, and their experience inside a physical store should be as excellent, comfortable, fluid, and frictionless as it is when browsing the retailer's e-commerce platform.

Entering a physical store or browsing an online store and using my smartphone to understand that the brand knows my tastes and offer me an augmented experience only with the same screen with which I do my banking or post my photos is a technological milestone that many brands are already using with agility and fluidity, but for others, the road ahead is still science fiction. We just have to be a little brave, learn and experiment.

Germán Talón R.

Photo by Michelangelo Buonarroti (Pexels)

About is a complete Communication Platform that is marketed as a Service (PCaaS) and, in a very friendly and intuitive way, allows brands and retailers to connect and interact with their audiences in physical spaces. stores, organizes, schedules and plays digital content in a measurable, centralized way and on any screen, integrating with total flexibility to scalable digitization projects through AI, Big Data and IoT to create differential experiences with customers and employees in any physical space. With headquarters in Barcelona and offices in Madrid, Valencia, Miami and Mexico City and certified partners in most countries in Europe, Latin America and the United States, manages more than 50 million digital assets in more than 20. 000 connected devices around more than 25 countries worldwide, and more than 2,000 users, 150 brands and retailers of reference from different sectors such as Ikea, Areas, Nespresso, Coca Cola Europacific Partners, Haribo, Unilever, Revlon, P&G, Domino's Pizza, Spar, Aldi, Electronic Arts and Cinépolis, among many others.




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