SK Telecom previews Smart Shopper

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SK Telecom previews Smart Shopper

SK Telecom will introduce a next-generation shopping platform that will break down the barrier between online and offline shopping routine and make possible purchasing goods without a cart at a market, at the upcoming Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on March 2.

Under the new platform called Smart Shopper, customers at a mall will be provided with bar code-based scanners at the entrance and scan products on the shelves to buy with the device on their own.

After checking out with their credit card on a self-payment machine - without having to queue in a long line - customers will be able to just walk out of the store without the purchased items in hand because they will be delivered.

That will eliminate the hassle of carrying home purchased goods.

Mall operators would be able to minimize the amount of space needed for stores because they only need to stock one or two items.

“Those homemakers who have to shop with their preschool children or double-income couples who commute on public transportation and shop after work will find the new platform especially useful,” said a spokesman for the country’s top mobile carrier.

The service differs from mobile or online shopping malls in that customers can physically check out the products they want to purchase.

Visitors to the Mobile World Congress will be given a chance to experience the highly futuristic shopping format at the SK Telecom booth.

Smart Shopper is expected to be adopted by local discount chains by the end of this year, according to the company, which did not specify which stores.

SK Telecom also will showcase a new credit card equipped with a liquid crystal keyboard and integrated circuit chip that can store information from multiple cards from different issuers.

Users may simply choose to use one of the cards without having to carry many different ones.

Another notable feature of the so-called Smart Credit Card is that it will be based on Bluetooth low energy wireless technology that can communicate with any mobile platform. That means when a user loses the card, a notification will be sent to the smartphone.

A mobile stamp platform dubbed Smart Stamp, also to be unveiled at the Barcelona show, is expected to replace paper loyalty cards at coffee shops and restaurants.

Users will only need to touch their smartphones with the platform on the store terminals without having to turn on the phone or launch a specific application.

BY SEO JI-EUN [spring@joongang.co.kr]

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