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Virtual Store in Korea Lets You Shop with Your Smart Phone

Last year, Tesco Homeplus, a retail chain in Korea, started changing online shopping by putting up large billboards with pictures of their products, with a QR code associated with each product. You use your smartphone to scan the QR codes to fill up your cart. When you’re finished shopping, you checkout online and your groceries are delivered to your home.

Now, they have an entire store that is virtual. This is actually part of a subway station in Seoul, Korea. Homeplus has postered the pillars, walls, and doors of the subway station with images of their products. You can do your shopping while waiting for your train and have your ordered delivered to you after work. Using the Homeplus Android or iPhone app, you can save QR codes you  have scanned already, and refill your order from anywhere. The app works really well. You can search for products right in the app, but if you happen to be browsing their virtual store, you tap the bar code button at the top right and hold your smartphones camera up to the product’s QR code. The app auto-scans, and immediately takes you to the product in the app.

 

I think this is a terrific idea. We do a lot of our shopping online, in this day and age, and I like the idea of a kind of crossover between online shopping and actual shopping.. You still get a sense of the shape and size of what you’re purchasing, but you don’t have to push the cart around the store or carrying everything home yourself. Could you see something like this taking off in North America?

  • Londonfish

    I wonder what’s the delivery charge, any minimum purchase for free delivery and is it same day, etc. The shopping part is fine, just like shopping online just the delivery part I m not sure

  • Mark

    I think I fail to see the point here.  So I have to go out to the store and (virtually) pick out all my groceries, but can’t take them home?  Why not just have a website I can order them from??  If I’m simply scanning bar (or  QR) codes and having it all delivered why can’t I just sign into an online account and  shop from my computer?

    Of course since we buy mostly local meat, fruits and veggies, with little to none processed foods, this has little appeal.  

    This is a cool new concept but after the smoke clears, I think the novelty will wear off.  

  • Scrotumnosed

    you’re NOT going out to the store, these panels are located in high volume commuting areas – subways and such. and they DO have a website to order groceries from, since you can refill past orders via smartphone, but a push like this brings more awareness to it. also, your purchased products are delivered to your doorstep right after you complete your order… you’re not going out of your way. 
    this is a campaign to save resources on the supermarket’s side and provide an immensely convenient way for consumers (especially people that rely on public transportation and those without cars) to get groceries without having to worry about the hassle of porting them home themselves. order some groceries while waiting for your train home, and have it on your front porch when you reach home. sounds pretty convenient and groundbreaking to me.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_6ZX3PRJUI3IF7EOM3HZN3YQOH4 Ishan

    meanwhile in korea

  • gazman

    Why don’t you ever link to the sources of your articles?? 

  • Jin Hwang

    http://?koreajoongangdaily.joinsmsn?.com/news/article/?article.aspx?aid=2940729

    Original article. It was Aug. 2011.

    Neither there was no LCD screen nor it was not a real store.
    That was just a temporary installation in the small corner of a whole sale market. PR is the only purpose of this kind of useless stuff.

    We don’t look inside of that silly printings in the store. Rather than this, we just click carts in our home. I don’t understand why you guys are so fanatic about this concept, and please stop spreading this out. Or, at least you guys have to give correct information with references. 

  • Jin Hwang

    http://?koreajoongangdaily.joinsmsn?.com/news/article/?article.aspx?aid=2940729

    Original article. It was Aug. 2011.

    Neither there was no LCD screen nor it was not a real store.

    That was just a temporary installation in the small corner of a whole sale market. In addition, PR is the only purpose of this kind of useless stuff.
     

    Nobody wants to look inside of that silly printings in the store. Rather than this, we just click carts in our home. I don’t understand why you guys are so fanatic about this concept, and stop spreading this out. At least you guys have to give correct information with references. 

  • Mark

     Ahh.  I can definitely see the appeal for urbanites that only use public transportation.  When I was a kid, dad and I had to walk about 30-40 min to the grocery store and then carry everything back.  Took him a few months before he splurged on one of those carts. 

    Supermarkets as we know them will continue to exist even if this concept takes off, so you still have the environmental footprint in terms of delivering product to the store.  If anything for those that still walk to the store, you would actually be increasing it. 

    With decreased in sales at the store level comes a decrease in jobs also imo.  The warehousing infrastructure already exists so you wouldn’t really have to create too many jobs in that regard.  Courier companies would get a bump in sales and poss jobs but then big refrigerated trucks driving around town vs small car or someone on foot?? I’m not sure if you could accurately measure this.

    Like I said, I think it’s a cool concept, really cool.  And because of the cool factor I think it will take off.  Just not sure it will survive the long run.  I’m already concerned about where my food comes from, what’s in it, how’s it made, is it grain fed?  Organic?  Antibiotic free?  No way the cashier knows this (certainly not the self checkout – LoL), how about the stock person?  Nope, probably not even the Manager.  You’re even further removed from the source this way. 

    Somehow makes me think of some new app for the iPhone, cool and new. 
    Only a couple of months later you realize you haven’t used it since the
    week you downloaded it.