Korean commuters get virtual shops

Read time 1min 30sec

Korean commuters get virtual shops

UK company Tesco is using quick response (QR) codes, smartphones and virtual reality in South Korea to offer consumers a shopping alternative to physical store locations, says CBS News.

The retailer is making commuter-shopping possible by letting the store come to the people while they wait for the subway.

While retailers and the advertising industry seem to be latching onto QR codes, the possibilities for this technology, when accompanied with other innovations, are just now being explored and shared in other parts of the world.

Shoppers view photos of products in virtual stores. When they pick out something to buy, they scan the product's QR code with their smartphones, which adds the item to their virtual carts. After the purchase is made, the product is delivered to the consumer's physical address.

According to The Telegraph, for the technology to work in the UK, two vital pieces of infrastructure would be required - mobile connectivity on all forms of public transport, including the tube networks in London, Glasgow and other cities, and a fleet of delivery vans set up for fast reactions.

Most of the big supermarkets in the UK have mobile-optimised Web sites for online shopping and Ocado's iPhone app has won several awards, but Home Plus' subway poster shops pushed the idea of mobile shopping into the minds of people who could use it right where they are, right now.

Their sales increased 130% in three months, and their number of registered users went up by 76%.

They are now number one for online groceries and the gap between them and E-Mart has narrowed offline.

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