How the Internet of Things is going to transform retail –

August 12, 2016 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Google+ Uncategorized

Man looking at his smartphone while shopping for clothes(Hero Images/Getty)“We are entering into an era of deep personalization where everything from our bodies to our homes are interconnected,” declares a recent report by MaRS Discovery District. The report—Canada’s Innovation Landscape: Consumer & Commerce—outlines some of the fastest growing industries in the country. One of the most-hyped but still poorly understood technologies the report covers is the “Internet Of Things.”On the Internet of Things, your body is the next thing to be networkedIoT technology has long garnered a certain degree of public mockery, of the “Why do I need my fridge connected to the Internet?” variety. But, the report argues, this is a simplification of an industry that will soon come to revolutionize commerce as we know it.“Obviously IoT is somewhat vague and nebulous to a lot people,” admits one of the report’s authors, Sue McGill. “When you actually look at the definition of IoT, simply put, it’s about connecting any device or object to the Internet. So that includes everything from your cellphone to your car engine—and it includes people.”In the report, McGill writes that IoT technology is “narrowing the gap between the physical and digital worlds” and that “retailers are leveraging the enormous amount of data being collected to connect with their consumers in real time, both inside and outside of stores.”Because of this, more and more Canadian startups are looking to capitalize on the Internet of Things. Pieter Boekhoff heads up Nobal Technologies, a company that’s developed an interactive mirrors it calls the “iMirror.” These reflective interactive screens are being installed around the world, such as in tourist destinations like the Mall of America. Boekhoff’s says the company has just launched a partnership with Tommy Hilfiger in Europe.