Sunday, October 29, 2006
Friday, October 27, 2006
Now in their defense, there was a lot of uncertainty surrounding their business model at first (renting DVDs at McDonald's and other fast food places for $1/night), so their initial efforts were probably more aligned towards proving the model than working on remote management tools, but given the plethora of software options out there, it still seems amazing that they could have placed so many units before it became apparent that remote control would be useful.
The company eventually selected Kaseya's Enterprise mangement software, "which costs about $1,000 to start, [and] uses a combination of server software hosted on servers at redbox's data center and distributed agents on each managed kiosk. Kaseya provides software updates and support for its software to redbox, which the customer received by connecting to Kaseya's data center. There is also a server-based application that allows redbox IT staff to perform Web-based management and administration tasks on all the kiosks."
Past articles on Redbox include:
Redbox DVD kiosks are now installed and operating in 27 Smith's locations
McDonald's DVD kiosks drive sales
McDonalds expands use of DVD kiosks
DVD kiosks coming to a grocer near you
More on McDonald's in-store DVD rental kiosks
Tags: RedBox, Kaseya, kiosks, DVD rental kiosks, interactive kiosks
Here's the original posting that also contains a rendered illustration.
Tags: PS3, Playstation 3, kiosk, interactive kiosk, demo kiosk, playable demo
Wednesday, October 25, 2006
I can't imagine that a 50% increase is really sustainable (there must be some novelty factor involved), but then again, I know that I've personally gone into Barnes & Noble, looked for a book, asked for help, was continually unable to find what I was looking for, and left empty handed (usually to go home and buy what I was looking for at Amazon). The retailer says they plan to add additional features to the kiosk later, but for now the focus is entirely on the RFID systems.
Kiosks have been designed for the retailer that track books by section and shelf location as well as the ability to order. Customers using the kiosk have increased their purchases by 50 percent compared to what they were buying prior to the technology tool being placed in stores.
Selexyz' RFID system allows the retailer to track books on an individual basis from the point where a sku leaves the distribution center to the point it is purchased. The system can even identify when a book has been placed in the wrong section of the store.
According to the bookstore chain, it has achieved an almost 100 percent accuracy rate. Errors have resulted when tags were placed in the wrong area on an item or because they fell off.
I also blogged briefly on Using RFID to improve the customer experience over at In-Store & Retail Media News.
Tags: RFID, kiosks, in-store media, merchandising, self-service, product locator
[M]ore than half (59%) of the consumers surveyed (13-19 year-olds) said they want little or no staff involvement in their shopping experience. Of this group, 66% would like to self-scan their purchases rather than wait in line to pay a checkout assistant. However, of those who still want human interaction, 57% want staff to pack their bags for them.The most frequently cited reason for wanting self-service checkout solutions was, not surprisingly, speed. Still, the need for information plays a strong role as well. 26% of respondants said they'd be interested in "smart" shopping carts, and 22% wanted to see information kiosks placed throughout the store.
But, despite a strong acceptance of self-scanning, 40% still want human interaction while shopping - but they want staff to be deployed differently. The research found that, of those opting for continued staff involvement, improved customer service is required:
- 45% of teenagers want staff to take shopping to their cars;
- 41% want staff to get products they have forgotten while they are in line at the cash register
Past articles on self-checkout systems include:
Storefront Backtalk: Reports differ on self-checkout value
Self-checkout impacting impulse purchases?
Consumers expected to spend $475 Billion at self-service kiosks
Thieves steal using Tesco self-checkout systems
Self-service picking up in the UK
Tags: self-service, self-checkout, retail kiosks, kiosks
Friday, October 20, 2006
[T]he moment it detects a pedestrian it springs into life. The monolith-like installation first swivels either right or left to ensure that the creative message is directly in front of the consumer. It then snaps a photograph of the person and displays it on a screen.What would be really clever is if the device could somehow interact with the user's current cellphone -- perhaps by sending an SMS or a Bluetooth message -- but there's no word on what the display actually does, aside from follow you around.
Unrelated (though from the same article), we now have a new front-runner for dumbest advertising-related statement: "The technology inside mobile phones is now so complex that it deserves an advertising medium that reflects that processing power." Yes, AdAge, that's it. What people have been crying out for is a way to better harness the power of their cellphones so they can be advertised to.
Tags: Nokia, interactive furniture, kiosk, digital signage, airport signage, airport advertising
Thursday, October 19, 2006
So it looks like the first incarnation of this system won't be networked, but there's certainly room for that upgrade later on. Considering how much flexibility and improved availability remote monitoring and content management provides, I'd expect to see this come in sooner rather than later, provided of course that the systems actually provide some benefit in-store.
Tags: Microsoft, Impart, Zune, merchandising, retail media, kiosks
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
In any event, the writeup is quite good, so you should go here to read about it.
Tags: Self-checkout, kiosks, retail kiosks, IHL self-checkout study, Aberdeen self-checkout study
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
"The whole concept is to get the purchase intent in the way of the consumer so they almost trip over it," said Paul Schlossberg, president of D/FW Consulting, a Goshen, N.Y.-based firm that specializes in the food and vending industries. "If you walk into McDonald's and you can rent a movie for a buck a night, that means you're going to come back."I've seen more and more DVD rental stations (both Redbox and other-branded) in my own shopping excursions recently, so it certainly seems like the industry is making some positive gains (either that, or a lot of people are going to lose money on it). The ultimate solution, of course, would be to make all of the machines compatible, so I can rent a movie from a Redbox kiosk at a McDonald's but then return it to somebody else's kiosk at another location.
Past articles about Redbox:
Redbox signs Smith's Food & Drug
McDonald's DVD kiosks drive sales
McDonalds expands use of DVD kiosks
Tags: Wallgreens, DVD rental kiosk, DVD kiosk, Redbox
The self-shipping kiosk – which combines the self-service experience of NCR with the mailstream expertise of Pitney Bowes – will be marketed globally to postal authorities, retailers, package delivery and express transportation firms and other businesses....This is a pretty cool application, and I could certainly see retailers picking them up to help harried customers find and ship that last-minute Christmas present or belated birthday gift.
With the self-shipping kiosk, consumers can readily complete shipping and mailing activities such as weighing packages or envelopes, selecting the class of service desired and printing postage or shipping labels.
Because the kiosk prints “on demand” variable denomination secure stamps, it helps eliminate the costly printing, distribution, accounting and ultimately destruction of unused stamps. The technology also helps ensure that dispensed postage is secure and trackable, assuring postal revenues.
Tags: NCR, Pitney Bowes, shipping kiosk, self-service shipping, kiosk
But wait, it get's better. As Techdirt notes (from a story on Avi Rubin's blog), apparently there has been at least one case where a Diebold kiosk hasn't recorded any votes, "despite the fact that fifty-five people were logged voting at that machine. There was no warning or error message on the machine that would have, you know, let anyone know that the machine shouldn't be used or their votes wouldn't be recorded. While in the end, they were able to recover the votes by looking at the additional on-board memory (not the memory card) on the machine, Rubin points out all of the problems with this method, including the fact that they're reliant on Diebold to recover these votes and provide an accurate tally."
Past links to Diebold articles:
Major flaws found in Diebold electronic voting kiosks
Diebold introduces self-service coin counting solution
Diebold Reports First Quarter Financial Results
Tags: Diebold, voting kiosks, interactive kiosks, self-service voting, voting terminals
Monday, October 09, 2006
The article notes:
InfoPods are free-standing information points providing a mall directory, news and centre information service whilst also delivering a platform for brand advertising. ScreenFX, created a bespoke design for the InfoPods at Drake Circus for architect Chapman Taylor to fully integrate the system into the retail environment.ScreenFX and Avanti Screenmedia both have a hybrid business model where they own and operate networks (in different capacities given the deal), and also provide software and services like management, content production and the like.
Positioned at key points on the malls, each InfoPod incorporates two 63in plasma screens mounted overhead and back to back, which will show live action advertising for local and national advertisers. Two 17in interactive touchscreens, at waist height will provide shoppers with a wayfinder directory to stores in the Centre. These touchscreens can also be 'bought into' by tenant retailers and advertisers to mount dynamic and highly engaging interactive promotions. The architects have also specified a fibreoptic network to service the network when it is installed.
Tags: ScreenFX, digital signage, mall kiosks, digital advertising
Friday, October 06, 2006
Tesco self-service tills suffer from an apparent "security loophole" making it easy for fraudsters to steal cash, consumer group Which? has said.Tesco notes that they will begin adding chip-and-PIN technology to their self-checkout lanes soon, which should significantly curtail the problem.
Tesco operates the check-outs at 320 stores, allowing shoppers to scan goods and pay with a debit or credit card.
But the tills do not take chip-and-pin card technology and Which? says this allows thieves to use stolen cards.
In response, Tesco said fraud levels at the tills were low and chip-and-pin technology would be in place soon.
By automating the sales process through a glorified vending machine interface, the Automat allows cooks to focus on cooking and keeping the kitchen clean, and little else. Users simply step up to the machine, insert come money, select an item or two, and the food is dispensed from a compartment. As empty compartments rotate to the back of the machine, the cooks in the kitchen simply refill them with more fresh food.