News Feature | January 22, 2014

Retail IT News For VARs — January 22, 2014

By Anna Rose Welch, contributing writer

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD)

In the news are predictions that most mobile apps and BYOD programs will not succeed. Also, a study reveals customers are more willing to provide personal information if it is exchanged for a good deal, and a poll shows customers find POS prompts “intrusive.”

Gartner’s Mobility Predictions Include Disappointments

Gartner has released its list of mobility predictions for 2014. According to Gartner, less than 0.01 percent of mobile applications will be considered a financial success by developers. Regardless of the number of mobile apps available, these apps are not designed to bring in revenue and could be disappointing for app designers expecting profits. The report also focuses on BYOD programs, saying these programs will ultimately fail because of overly restrictive mobile device management measures. As mobile browsers become more sophisticated, Gartner predicts that mobile browsers will be used as an application delivery platform. HTML5, Gartner says, will be the most widely available and the best application delivery technology for developers looking to create a quality user experience. 

Customers Get Personal For A Good Deal

An IBM study reveals that consumers are more comfortable sharing personal information, including location, cell numbers, and social media handles with retailers in exchange for a good deal. IBM retail global industry leader urges retailers to enact Big Data and analytics strategies in order to use this information to provide customers with personalized and relevant deals. The study also determined the most valuable omni-channel capabilities consumers want a retailer to have. These include: price/product assortment consistency across channels, the ability to ship out of stock orders home, track an order’s status, and return online orders in the store.

Consumers Hesitant About “Intrusive” POS Prompts

Results from a website poll conducted by CompuCom show that 63 percent of consumers surveyed find POS prompts, (e.g. customized mobile discount alerts) “Big-Brother-ish and intrusive.” Thirty-seven percent of respondents found these discount prompts  “helpful and cool.” While this might seem disheartening in an age of increasing personalized notifications, CompuCom says it’s all about the retailer “striking a balance and not overburdening consumers.” Allowing customers to opt-in to these alerts is the best way to ensure that their preferences and privacy are respected.

Holiday Mobile Scans Hit 10 Million

Scanbuy released the results of its annual holiday trend report, which show that nearly 10.4 million mobile barcode and NFC scans were processed during the holiday shopping season. This is a 33 percent increase from last year. Application downloads, discounts, and sweepstakes were the most popular type of content accessed. Apple iOS users scanned more than Android users, while men — especially in the 35-44 age group — scanned with a mobile phone more often than women.

CIO’s Gear Up For 2014 Priorities

Information Week has released a list of the top 10 retail CIO priorities for 2014. They include building a single customer experience, continuing the search for a single transaction platform, embracing cloud services, and building mobile strategies.

Retail IT Talking Points

Thomas Husson and Julia Ask for Forrester have compiled a list of mobile trends for 2014. Big Data and analytics will be key to leveraging mobile and engaging with customers in their “exact moment of need.” Husson and Ask also expect that mobile’s ability to provide Big Data will impact other channels and that mobile advertising will mature as new mobile-centric ad formats emerge.

Christian Buckley for Wired discusses how the growth of mobile is contributing to the “consumerization of IT” and the BYOD movement. However, he argues that mobility is more than just devices; rather, it’s a “functional portability.” Rather than asking “What can I do with mobile,” he urges businesses to consider where problem areas lie and how to make employees more mobile-efficient.

For more news and insights, visit BSMinfo’s Retail IT Tech Center.

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