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Asda Trials IoT Sensor Technology

Asda Trials IoT Sensor Technology
08 December 2021

Asda has launched an innovative project at its Stevenage tech store as part of a series of trials in partnership with Hark and SeeChange.

The project includes the use of 207 in-store sensors, allowing the supermarket to quickly detect things like spillages, out of stock products, or the need to open more checkouts to manage queues. 

Asda will also use this technology to understand how it can make the in-store experience more convenient for colleagues and customers, with the potential to include other applications if there is demand for this. 


Stock Control, Spillages and Queue Management


Leeds-based Internet of Things (IoT) software provider, Hark, and Manchester-based AI software provider, SeeChange are helping Asda to access real-time data and analytics that will give feedback on everything from on-shelf stock availability to pinch points in the store. 

Hark’s platform will help to analyse in-store behaviours and use the data to suggest ways to improve customer flow, understand how shoppers interact with items and make improvements to the overall customer experience. 

In time, the aim is to integrate Hark’s platform with other devices and systems in-store, such as self-checkouts, to further optimise the customer and colleague experience. 

Charlotte Gidney, Asda’s Innovation Project Manager, said: “We want to create a frictionless in-store experience for customers, from the moment that they step into the store to the moment they leave, which is why we’re working with Hark and SeeChange to harness the power of their retail expertise that will help us understand the best way to connect every element of the in-store journey. 

“Initially the project will look at how customers are shopping in-store, taking these learnings and working on key projects that will make the experience of shopping with Asda even more convenient. 

“As we move to phase two of this exciting journey, we’ll look to evolve the technology and integrate this with our wider ecosystem, so we can understand how the insight gained will benefit colleagues and customers.”


What is Asda’s Tech Store?


Launched in August 2019, Asda’s Stevenage store is hailed as a project to help us to understand the future of retail.

The store has tested over twenty different technologies since phase one of the project was launched. The concept is about testing and learning from the latest technology available to retailers. The store is one of the first in the UK to test out 3D holograms which are projected in the air to showcase products and provide customer information.

Another one of the tests was in the laundry aisle using new Electronic Shelf Labels rather than the traditional paper-based price labels customers normally see on the shelves.

Michael Rose, who is part of the project team based in-store said: "We’ve tested labels from four different suppliers. They are about the size of a post-it note and run on batteries which last up to five years. In the future they’ll be fully integrated into our system so any price changes can be loaded up immediately. We can have 3,000 price changes in a week so could save our colleagues a lot of time and our customers seem to love the idea too."

Picture: a photograph showing the exterior of an Asda store, showing store signage. Image Credit: Asda

Article written by Ella Tansley | Published 08 December 2021


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