Intel Intros DO For Fashion Retail

Intel has unveiled a new digital out-of-home product for the retail environment, the Retail Interactive Fashion Experience, which allows shoppers to scroll through a particular store's inventory of clothing and accessories. The product is part of Intel's "Connected Store" concept, combining place-based digital displays with email and social functionality.

The in-store interactive displays allow users to filter inventory with criteria like price, style, material, and size. Shoppers can flag items that look promising and save them for further review in a "favorites" area, then combine these on virtual mannequins -- and even send a picture of an outfit to friends to get their opinion.

On the retailer side, giving shoppers access to the full store inventory yields data that can help make stocking and warehousing more efficient. Of course, an in-store DO display with a comprehensive listing of items in inventory also allows users (who are so inclined) to circumvent salespeople who may not be entirely helpful.

Intel has been working on DO platforms in consultation with the MIT Media Lab as well as brands like Adidas, Best Buy, Kraft Foods, and Procter & Gamble, and first previewed the Retail Interactive Fashion Experience displays at the Digital Signage Expo in Las Vegas and the National Retail Federation Convention and Expo in New York City earlier this year.

While adverse economic conditions are obviously a concern for fashion retail, the category has proved resilient over the last couple years, with total apparel sales edging up from $190.6 billion (for the twelve-month period ending April 2010) to $193.2 billion (for the twelve-month period ending April 2011).

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