3 Things Happening Now In Retail

Photo credit: Aaron Muszalski on Flickr.

In this post, we showcase three exciting things that need to be on your retail radar.

-Theme parks with virtual reality

Hoping to break the mould for fairground entertainment, Neurosis is the three-year-old brainchild behind the joint efforts of Middlesex and Nottingham universities. Harnessing the power of the Oculus Rift headset, it fuses virtual reality with a few tilts and spins of a chair – though the ride will never actually go anywhere. Submerged in VR, and hooked up to an encephalograph, the user has their neurological data processed – dubbed ‘mind-reading’ – in order for the ride to adapt to them and ultimately, be controlled by them.

-Furniture with integrated charge points

Ikea’s announced a range of furniture, named Home Spot, that’s able to charge devices wirelessly with Qi technology – including desks, tables and lamps. It’s expected to go on sale in early April in Europe and the US, and there are plans to extend this worldwide.

-Watches are the new mobile payment

While cash still accounts for the majority of total transactions, paying via mobile is certainly taking off; between 2013 and 2014, mobile payments grew by 36% – and that’s just state-side. And from the mobile wallet, to in-app purchases and ecommerce, there’s plenty of ways to pay. So what happens when the smartwatch becomes more mainstream? There’s thoughts the technology could replace smartphones – though, as the watches often rely on bluetoothing to apps on another device, this may still be out of reach.