Inside IT
IT Changes Our Consumer Culture: University Reporters Visit KShop 2014

There are kinds of technology that have become deeply engrained in our lives. Using Wi-Fi at a coffee shop and sharing files through a cloud service are examples of these. As we see daily, IT is changing our lives rapidly to become a crucial part of everyone’s day. One of the most outstanding changes we can witness is in retail shops where we can see people’s consumption patterns. These retail shops have to figure out quickly what the consumers need and find the right items to sell and IT is used to satisfy every single consumer.

There was a retail marketing fair called KShop 2014 at Ilsan Kintex in South Korea from September 25th to 27th and KShop is the only retail related fair. As many kinds of IT that satisfy customer needs and turn retail shops into better places for consumer culture were introduced, Chan-Min Kim and Ji-In Jeong decided to pay a visit on behalf of the university reporters for LG CNS. Let’s take a look at how our consumer culture is changing through their eyes.

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KShop 2014 Retail Fair

Chan-Min Kim: IT Changes the Place of Consumption

The most interesting thing to me at KShop 2014 was how IT brings about changes in consumption. I’d like to share some of the cases I saw.

Digital Signage Meets Space

Imagine you’re walking into a coffee shop. Since the first thing that will catch your eyes will be the menu, it can be considered the face of a retail shop. Because most coffee shops have their own seasonal menus, changing them can be a lot of work. Electronic menu display systems and digital signage technology were developed to take care of this inconvenience and provide more consumer-friendly marketing strategies.

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Smart ESL (Electronic Shelf Label) from CEST

Digital Signage is the service that shows various kinds of information including text and video through a digital display at a public or commercial space. The most interesting part was how digital signage could enable very comfortable communication with customers. The terminal displays diverse types of information through the real-time management system. The system can also be connected to SNS so the shop can have a special real-time event with customers and customers can share thoughts with other people in the shop.

Pop-up Alarm Marketing with Beacon Technology

Another thing that caught my eye was beacon technology and push alarm marketing using Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. Beacon is the technology that enables us to send information to people at a certain location through a location system. Applying this technology, one can get a product’s discount information over the phone when a good product is found in a department store. Beacon technology can also provide an automatic information provision service for exhibitions. Beacon technology recognizes the location by using sound recognition tech as well as a distance calculation method. This is called SoundTAG. It helps you market better to consumers by sending promotional or discount information to specific people at certain locations. Beacon technology is becoming a new marketing method that can provide entertaining information creating a new type of UX (User Experience)

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RECO and SoundTAG, beacon technology from Purples

How is IT being utilized to read consumers’ needs, though? The answer lies in data accumulation and analysis. The security camera next to a shop’s door recognizes the customer’s age and gender, and then figures out his or her consumption pattern changing according to environmental factors, such as weather, season, and time. It then interprets the collected data through ‘Client Data Analysis Cloud Service’ technology, which is in fact already in use in many large retail shops. There was an occasion where a father made a complaint to a supermarket for providing a pamphlet full of goods for pregnant women to his daughter, only to find out his daughter actually was pregnant. We can see how close such an analysis service using IT is to our lives.

Ji-In Jung: IT Changes the Payment System

Chan-Min just described how IT is changing our consumer environment. It was very impressive how retailers can apply IT to their business for a marketing strategy that provides new experiences. IT, however, is not only changing the marketing system, but also the payment system which is one of the most crucial parts of a retail business. Let’s take a look at some of the ‘easy pay’ services that turned into a big issue recently.

KakaoPay in the Center of the Easy Pay Solution

It was KakaoPay that attracted the biggest crowd at KShop 2014 with their creative events and trial booth. KakaoPay which upgraded itself by combining Kakao Talk, which is used by 97% of all smart phone users in Korea and LG CNS’s easy pay system. We could see it earned its crucial place in the easy payment market through its convenience and security.

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KakaoPay promotional booth (Source: LG CNS website)

The technology that LG CNS provided for KakaoPay is called MPay solution. MPay is the safest system that can process payments with only a password, and it doesn’t require your card information, certificate, or plug-in installation. LG CNS’s MPay is being recognized in the field as a tech that can replace the certificate system by achieving the highest security level that the Financial Supervisory Service suggested. It has a patent for easy pay security validation in Korea and abroad, and is considered a great payment service that offers a higher level of security compared to other systems around the globe.

It is designed to divide the encrypted card information and personal information between the user’s cell phone and LG CNS data center, so the payment can’t be completed by having only one half of the required information. It also changed its validation into a one-time type using an OTP algorithm in order to strengthen its security features.

The Place for Communication: SNS Events and KakaoPay

As the introductory event for KakaoPay began, Kakao Characters such as Apeach, Muji, and Neo came on to say hello. The trial booth held an event where visitors could take photos with these cute characters and upload them onto the SNS account with the status line “The fastest mobile payment, KakaoPay” and then get a gift.

U can make a purchase using KakaoPay on Korean online malls including Aladin, Kyobo Book Center, Yogiyo, and Baetaltong. These companies also joined the booth to promote their services.

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KakaoPay trial booth and people participating in the event

KakaoPay, a Wallet in the Phone

KakaoPay is working their way to attract more affiliates. Though it is only available on Android devices, soon the service for iPhones will be provided as well. They’re also pedaling the discussion with other big retailers such as HomePlus, We Make Price to adopt KakaoPay. Since KakaoPay emerged by combining Kakao Talk, the biggest mobile messenger in Korea, and LG CNS’s MPay, known for its convenience and security in the easy pay service field, I expect to see the market change dramatically.

Today, we introduced some of the very exciting news from KShop 2014. It was such a meaningful time to see all the hottest trends in retail businesses and experience their services.

Written by Chan-min Kim & Ji-In Jung, University Reporters for LG CNS

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