Unleashing cool retail technologies from a steamy summer

Life of the chain store Retail Statistics Blog

The summer of 2022 was marked by sweltering temperatures and retail innovations in robotic technology, cloud and freshness.

As always, summer came and went fast enough to give some of us the blues. But summer always leaves behind great memories, which this year include several notable applications of retail technology.

Here’s a look at how retailers are turning up the heat in the areas of robotics, cloud computing, and fresh produce automation during the summer of 2022.

New definition of bot store

Robotic technology isn’t a new trend per se, but the summer of 2022 saw one express service retailer take advantage of robotic automation in a very new way, Mezli, which is a completely autonomous system. robotic restaurant Resembling a large refrigerated container, it opened at San Francisco’s Spark Social Food Park in August. The restaurant’s founders described the high-tech restaurant as “the first of its kind in the world”.

While other automated restaurants have opened in San Francisco and other select locations, Mezli is the first to offer a customizable hot menu to customers — with no workers on site, according to its founders. (Staff will upload pre-made ingredients to the site once per day.)

The automated approach, which significantly reduces labor costs, will allow Mezli to offer a menu of Mediterranean grain dishes, sides and drinks at a much lower price than comparable fast-food restaurants, the company said. In addition to the off-the-shelf package offerings, touchscreen customers can assemble their own from available components, creating approximately 64,800 possible combinations.

Show backbone – in the cloud

In June, H&M Group started fast fashion retail Partnership with Google Cloud To leverage the data analytics capabilities of the global platform and organization in an effort to enhance customer experience and supply chain operations.

The cloud-based enterprise data backbone will include a core data platform, data products, and advanced artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) capabilities. H&M also plans to create a new data network to make all kinds of data and events more accessible from multiple sources, including in-store, online, and third-party brands and suppliers.

As the enterprise cloud partnership with Google evolves, the retailer hopes to improve its internal supply chains. The company also intends to gain the ability to deliver next-generation customer experiences via a variety of physical and data sales channels. In addition, H&M wants to enable further development of data science and AI capabilities across its global organization.

Freshness Above All (Internet of Things)

Grocers use an increasingly innovative variety of smart technologies to reduce food waste by improving store freshness. In July, Festival Foods, a regional grocer in Wisconsin, announced that it was ensuring food safety and reducing deflation using Internet of Things (IoT) technology.

The retailer uses SmartSense Bluetooth IoT sensors to automatically and continuously monitor the temperature of its coolant, refrigerator and refrigerated states in all of its stores. Festival Foods has placed SmartSense Bluetooth IoT sensors in all refrigerated and frozen product shelving units in all of its stores.

Bluetooth sensors continuously take temperature data, which is then transmitted to portals that collect the data and send it to a central SmartSense database. The gates operate using battery backup and cellular technology, so they can still collect and transmit data in real time even in the event of a power outage or network outage.

Joe Lowenberg, Senior Director of Asset Protection, Festival Foods, said in a statement: exclusive interview with Chain Store Life. “Before, we didn’t know there was a problem until the employee went out and checked the products, by which time they might have already been damaged. Our process was reactive; now it is proactive.”

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