Creepy or useful: When retail employees start recognizing you with Google Glass


Welcome to our store! (Angel Navarrete/Bloomberg)

Hybris Software has its eye on the future of commerce. The video below shows you how it envisions the brick-and-mortar shopping experience changing. With a combination of iBeacons, apps, Google Glass and shoppers opting in, this is all possible. Is it enough of an upgrade for you to partake?

For those who may not want to play a video at work, here’s the process:

1. See a QR code on a magazine ad for a product you’re interested in. Scan the QR code on your smartphone.

2. Request customer service in an app for the next time you’re in a store.

3. You walk in the store, and an employee receives an alert via Google Glass that you’re in the store and want help buying that product.

4. The salesperson identifies and greets you, thanks to a photo from your Facebook profile.

5. The salesperson guides you to the product you’re interested in.

6. As you check out, the salesperson is alerted to another product you’re interested in, and he or she offers you a promotion.

7. You buy that other product, motivated by the deal.

There are a few question marks for me. QR codes have yet to catch on, and print magazines aren’t exactly growing. An alternative to the steps above would be skipping the QR code and app sign-up and just walking into a store and telling a nearby employee: “These are the skis I want.” It’s a simpler route to the same result. Or you could even find the skis on your own and bring them to a cash register.

If a shopper is comfortable doing that, why opt into to everything else Hybris envisions? The one loss would be potentially missing out on a coupon for a related product.

What do you think?

Matt McFarland is the editor of Innovations. He's always looking for the next big thing. You can find him on Twitter and Facebook.
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Matt McFarland · March 20