Tech Wrap Up: Samsung, Anyline, Aldi Lean on Tech; RangeMe and Zebra Technologies Unveil Shopper Insights

Liz Dominguez
Managing Editor
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Using mobile technology

Several companies including Samsung, Anyline, and Aldi are transforming the retail space, making significant tech investments to improve processes across workforce management and the supply chain. 

Additionally, two reports shed light on the current shopping trends across the U.S. and on a global scale, giving retailers a peek at how consumers are responding to ongoing challenges in the economy.

Frontline Workers Get Tech Upgrade With New Samsung Device

Samsung is empowering workers with a new Galaxy XCover6 Pro device, which will provide frontline workers with enterprise-grade smartphones they can leverage to improve data capture workflows. 

The company partnered with Scandit to optimize its tech, which should improve efficiency across inventory management, shipping, and receiving. This will be achievable by capturing barcodes or content across entire labels throughout last mile delivery, retail, logistics, and air travel. Frontline workers will be able to scan multiple items at once, tapping into augmented reality to more complex workflows like van loading, shelf price, and promotion label management. Additionally, the devices include the ability to accurately capture ID documents.  

Samsung and Scandit also took extenuating circumstances into consideration, such as low light conditions, difficult angles, and damaged barcodes. 

“Today’s workers have high expectations. They demand easy collaboration, peerless functionality in all conditions, and robust and effective productivity tools,” said KC Choi, EVP and head of global mobile B2B team, MX business at Samsung Electronics. “We created the Galaxy XCover Pro series to give companies a mobile device strong enough to withstand the rigors of business on the frontline.”

“Smart data capture powered by Scandit offers our customers powerful data capture tools that are not only built to meet the efficiency requirements of business, but also addresses the challenging situations many workers face while on the job,” Choi added.

Anyline Launches Tire Tread Scanner for Mobile Devices

Anyline, a mobile data capture and AI company, is also innovating within the mobile phone space, launching Tire Tread Scanner, which allows users to measure tire tread depth using any camera-enabled mobile device. 

The tech modernizes a process that typically requires dedicated analog or digital tools that technicians need to physically use to measure tire grooves. The mobile tech will expedite this manual process and decrease the chance for data-entry errors. 

By leveraging computer vision and artificial intelligence, the tech creates a 3D model of the tire tread, instantly storing digital measurements. This tech is able to be integrated into workforce or consumer-facing apps.

Anyline's Tire Tread Scanner
Anyline's Mobile Tire Tread Scanner

The solution was created in partnership with Discount Tire, an independent tire and wheel retailer.

“We are excited for what Anyline is working on next, as they continue to push the boundaries of what can be done with mobile data capture technology,” said Tom Williams, CXO, Discount Tire.

“Digitization has revolutionized automotive safety standards in the last decade, yet tire maintenance has stubbornly remained in the analog-age,” said Lukas Kinigadner, CEO and co-founder, Anyline. “The consequences are severe. According to the NHTSA, there were over 11,000 accidents on U.S. roads in the last year as a direct result of tire failures. At Anyline, we are replacing outdated manual measurements with digital data capture to make tire inspections easier, faster and safer for drivers.”

C&S Wholesale Grocers Strengthens Demand Forecasting and Replenishment

C&S Wholesale grocers, Inc., a supply chain solution and wholesale grocery supply in the U.S., is looking to strengthen its demand forecasting and automatic replenishment. 

The company is working with RELEX Solutions to streamline its tech processes and more accurately plan across the supply chain by implementing a new system. 

The new system will begin testing in early 2023. According to Sudhakar Lingineni, chief information officer, C&S Wholesale Grocers, Inc., the application of this new tech will help C&S advance its digital transformation strategy through a unified, adaptable, and scalable platform that leverages artificial intelligence and machine learning for forecasting, buying, and replenishment. 

“C&S is continuously innovating every aspect of our operations to enhance our customer’s experience. With RELEX we will be able to better predict and plan for their needs — today and in the future — with a flexible and agile technical solution that will grow with our company,” said Michael Papaleo, executive vice president and chief procurement officer, C&S Wholesale Grocers, Inc.

Frank Lord, CRO at RELEX Solutions, said C&S’ strengthened inventory management and forecast accuracy will help drive long-term growth.

Aldi Testing New Digital Commerce Platform

Aldi U.S. is testing a new digital commerce platform with a select group of U.S. customers, with plans to launch nationally in a phased approach. 

The company is working with Spryker Systems on the new shopping experience, which Spryker said offers the flexibility and scalability needed to adjust to a constantly changing market. The companies are looking to accelerate digital growth and transformation and provide customers with a simpler, seamless shopping experience. 

[More: Walmart Enhances Site Experience Ahead of Busy Holiday Season]

”Our partnership with Spryker will allow our shoppers another way to access the incredible value they expect from ALDI”, said Scott Patton, Aldi's vice president of national buying, in a statement. 

Reports and Research: Shopping Trends Unveiled

Zebra Technologies Corporation recently looked at shopper behavior for its 15th Annual Global Shopper study. While consumers are returning to in-store shopping, returning to pre-pandemic levels, they have also embraced self-serve habits. 

Among the findings:

  • Nearly 75% of shoppers say inflation has caused them to delay purchases, but most (76%) want in and out as quickly as possible
  • 43% of shoppers prefer paying with a mobile device/smartphone (+23pp since 2019) and half prefer self-checkout (up +19pp since 2019)
  • Preference for a traditional check-out register staffed by a person declined (-20pp since 2019)
  • Most retailers (77%) believe staffed checkouts are becoming less necessary with automation technology, and nearly half are converting traditional check-out spaces to self-serve and contactless options
  • Most shoppers (75%) prefer the option to have items delivered and 64% opt for retailers who offer in-store or curbside pick-up
  • Eight-in-10 shoppers prioritize their spending with retailers that offer easy returns
  • supporting consumer fulfillment preferences
  • Mobile ordering continues to increase: More than eight-in-10 shoppers and nine-in-10 millennials are using it, and seven-in-10 shoppers want more retailers to offer it

“Shoppers don’t see channels, they see one shopping experience however they shop,” said Matthew Guiste, retail industry lead, Zebra Technologies. “The days of siloed, omnichannel operations are out of step with how people shop today. A unified commerce approach can help retailers meet shoppers how they shop—online, instore, social, mobile, or any combination—and improve their overall experience.”

RangeMe also released research highlighting shopping trends, focusing on the activity of U.S. and international buyers on its platform for its Retail Roundup: Q3 2022 report. Top of mind were supplier diversity, wellness, and product discovery as retailers look for new ways to attract consumers despite continued inflationary challenges. 

Among the findings:

  • Finding diverse-owned brands is a key point of interest among buyers. Certifications such as Certified Ethnic Minority Owned and Certified Women Business Enterprise among the top searched certifications. 
  • Buyers are seeking new product innovation per RangeMe’s traffic history, with “Trending on RangeMe” and “Startup Brands” garnering the most visits. rands and products in the consumer packaged goods market.
  • Self-care keywords are growing in popularity. Last quarter, the keyword, “fragrance” was trending among health and beauty care buyers around the world, along with “deodorant,” “bath salts,” “shower steamers,” and “candles.

“RangeMe’s Retail Roundup provides a snapshot of what’s been on buyers’ minds over the past quarter, and where they are headed with their category planning,” said Nicky Jackson, founder and CEO of RangeMe. “With increasing prices and supply challenges worldwide, it's clear that there is major interest in finding new and innovative products, particularly from diverse-owned and sustainability-focused brands.”

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