5G is All Set To Transform Retail CX

September 26, 2019 5 Minutes Read

Want to download a full length movie in seconds? Then get ready for 5G that’s being as touted as the next big evolution in mobile connectivity. 5G proponents are touting speed and latency or responsiveness as the buzzwords to get retailers and other industries to watch out for this next-gen connectivity technology.

Promising faster data transfer speed rates of up to 10 Gbps, 5G will bring a 10x to 100x increase than the current 4G LTE connectivity and even low latency of around 4-10 milliseconds.

So, when can I expect 5G?

Expect the technology to be fully rolled out by early 2020’s with contained testing underway for its implementations. Verizon, T-Mobile, AT&T and Sprint have already their 5G networks ready, but as usual there are hurdles before it’s even available for the regular consumer. Firstly, Samsung Galaxy S10 5G, LG V50 ThinQ 5G and Moto Z3 for Verizon are the only three 5G-compatible smartphones on the market. Secondly, the service is available only in limited cities with little overlap and finally, the huge price that consumers have to pay to obtain the handset, 5G mobile plans and the hidden charges that are part of setting up the 5G infrastructure.

That’s something the retail industry will have to cross in the future. Before that, they need a complete overhaul in their operations and marketing strategies to benefit from this new technology.

5G network is the next retail trend

Retailers must draw on the insights derived from the multitude of data sources that’s available to reshape what the customers expect when entering a store. What 5G means for retail is that marketers have a new plan to leverage, innovate, react and adapt to this new technology. This give them an opportunity to make personalization for both retailers and customers seamless, interactive and for improved customer experience.

Various aspects of the retail industry will be influenced as 5G network allows for an augmented reality (AR) experience at home or in-store, smart mirrors for virtual reality dressing rooms, personalized notifications and customized products.

Internet of Things (IoT): In an increasingly interconnected IoT world, real-time inputs takes precedence. 5G supports this connectivity and improve real-time responsiveness. It can support 1 million connected devices per square kilometer compared to 4G.

Edge Computing: Retailers have more data to collect and leverage as both employees and customers now prefer interaction with a mobile device. Crunching that data in a centralized system with customer analytics in place requires more computing power, speed and network capabilities than the current 4G network offers. Edge computing coupled with 5G allows cloud computing applications to operate at the edge of the network, significantly reducing latency.

AR/VR: Gartner recently reported around 100 million users will prefer AR shopping online or in-store by 2020. Various factors such as user mobility, interactive touch requirements, form factor, AR cloud computational power, image rendering, low latency and lossless data compression are needed for true AR/VR implementations.

Faster chipsets, edge computing and IoT allow for high resolution AR assets with massive file sizes and require high processing power. The tethered headsets and wired connections limit the AR/VR experiences. 5G can eliminate these constraints as the computing happens in the AR cloud or on the edge.

Intelligent video: High resolution video capture and transmission over the current wireless network is hindered by bandwidth, latency and data loss issues. With 5G, AR Cloud and edge computing, they can be transmitted with real-time metadata overlay. The video analytics is more accurate for identifying video and pattern recognition of shoppers.

Many retailers can help power new technologies by adding 5G technology to an existing network architecture such as:

→ Sensors and untethered cameras for in-store intelligence

→ Greater employee efficiency and service through thin, mobile AR/VR hardware.

→ 360-degree visibility for end-to-end supply chain intelligence

→ Enabling predictive analytics, improved delivery, and fulfillment

Next step for 5G adoption

5G is the future, whether retailers are prepared for it or not. Only those who can effectively leverage the data at their disposal stand to gain. Price and products are not the only retail differentiators. Customer experiences that holds their attention, personalization that satisfies their desire for connection, and convenience are the real indicators.

Ideating a 5G strategy is the roadmap for all retail brands. A long term vision requires awareness and planning to invest in the technology. The more powerful 5G cellular network will change the way shoppers interact both online, offline or on mobile. It will augment the existing AR/VR capabilities beyond their smartphones for a richer experience.

The high bandwidth and low latency will allow retailers to bridge the virtual and physical worlds for a comfortable next-generation experience. 5G is a value-add for every facet of retailing. Combined with IoT and AI, 5G network will finally unlock the underlying intelligence that exists across a retailer’s enterprise.

In today’s highly saturated retail environment, retail serving companies like Kloud9 helps them with these new technologies to create 360-degree, data-driven views of their customers to serve them better across all brand touch points. As experts in mobile technology, AI and data science, our focus is on deriving insights from the data patterns.

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Kloud9 gives you the insight into what your business needs and requires

Kloud9 gives you the insight into what your business needs and requires