Innolux introduces smart shopping cart in collaboration with FamilyMart, eyes Japanese market in 2024

Siu Han, Taipei; Jerry Chen, DIGITIMES Asia 0

Taiwan-based display giant Innolux has teamed up with the renowned convenience store chain FamilyMart to introduce its groundbreaking "Smart Shopping Cart" at one of the FamiSuper stores.

Developed in-house by Innolux, the cart incorporates proprietary technology featuring automatic sensing and checkout capabilities, offering shoppers a seamless and efficient experience.

CEO James Yang revealed Innolux's intentions to validate the system in convenience stores and aspirations to penetrate the Japanese market by 2024, setting sights on a substantial share of the global retail checkout cart market.

The AI-powered smart supermarket by Innolux boasts four key features. Firstly, it enables customers to shop and checkout on the go, eliminating the need to wait in queues. Users can conveniently use FamilyMart's My FamiPay for self-checkout. Secondly, to address peak times at the deli counter, Innolux has introduced a dual-sided, slim, and integrated self-checkout machine called Kiosk. This innovation aims to alleviate staff workload during busy hours. Thirdly, the supermarket introduces a pioneering AI-driven transparent display for alcohol promotions, targeting the takeout market. Lastly, precise marketing is realized through facial recognition coupled with AM miniLED curved advertising displays.

The AI innovations in the retail sector

The current deployment of the smart shopping cart, self-checkout Kiosk, AI-driven transparent wine cabinet, and facial recognition advertising screens at FamilyMart's ETMall store are practical validations of these technologies. Hung-Wu Peng, General Manager of ETMall, expressed optimism about the cost-effective nature of self-checkout, especially for supermarket setups with food streets. With cost control and AI-assisted shopping guidance, the technology is expected to increase revenue by over 20%.

Guo-Xuan Chen, Head of the Industrial Development Administration, Ministry of Economic Affairs, highlighted the flourishing landscape of AI technologies in the retail sector. The focus on creating personalized shopping experiences through analysis, prediction, and generative AI technologies optimizes sales services. Innolux's AIoT supermarket solution is expected to play a significant role in the international smart retail industry.

According to Research & Markets, the global smart shopping cart market is projected to reach US$9.74 billion by 2030, with an anticipated compound annual growth rate of 27.48% from 2023 to 2030. Major international retail outlets are increasingly eyeing smart shopping carts to reduce labor costs and boost revenue.

Credit: Innolux

Credit: Innolux

Innolux tech revolutionizes retail efficiency

Innolux emphasized the cost-effectiveness of its smart shopping cart compared to competitors' unmanned stores, which often require substantial investment in camera equipment and store renovations. The AI-driven cart employs computer vision algorithms and sensor fusion technology, using AI-powered cameras to identify items in the cart. With a 10.1-inch interactive tablet screen, customers can use self-checkout, saving time by eliminating the need to wait in queues. Innolux anticipates further validation in convenience store settings, with plans to enter the Japanese market in the coming year and aggressively target the checkout cart market in Europe and North America.

In addition, the dual-sided self-checkout Kiosk was developed to tackle the high traffic in deli areas, a high revenue share area for FamilyMart. It is said to feature an exclusive 32-inch slim dual-sided backlight technology and a machine body thickness of only 22mm. It combines dual-sided display functionality for checkout and advertising, suitable for the limited space within convenience stores.

The P0.75 AM miniLED transparent display screen was developed by Innolux in collaboration with GIO Optoelectronics. This screen, featuring splicing capabilities and millisecond-level rapid dynamic dimming technology (with a brightness range from 1% to 60%), is the first to be introduced into chain convenience stores. The screen integrates generative AI advertising with transparent display interactive wine cabinets, aiming to significantly assist marketing personnel in saving at least 5 hours per week. This innovation not only alleviates creative fatigue but also enhances efficiency and effectiveness. Its application in promoting alcoholic beverages is expected to contribute towards increased revenue in the liquor category.

Finally, Innolux has implemented crowd monitoring and facial recognition features using its exclusive AM miniLED flexible technology. This creates a 29.6-inch dual-sided curved Mini LED advertising display that is "ultra-thin," "flexible," and "cleverly interactive," with a minimal distance of 1.2mm between each Mini LED. With a single-unit weight of only 300 grams, the display allows customized content for applications such as crowd guidance and advertising promotions based on specific venue requirements.