Inspiration & Story Behind the Project

Our project is created to focus on creating a disruption in the retail technology industry, specifically on mobile devices, to bridge the gap between the physical and digital retail stores.

In North America, it is predicted that more than half of all shopping will be done via mobile phones by 2020. A report by App Annie found mobile app use is expected to rise more than 30 percent in the coming year as consumers use their phones, not just as a research companion, but as a “full-fledged shopping platform.” Usage is expected to grow as retailers integrate their mobile apps to an in-store experience.

Physical retailers can leverage the trend by implementing technology that encompasses characteristics of an mPOS (mobile point of sale), that offer the ability to find in-store items, identify aisle locations, use their cameras to scan codes, learn more about products, and offer quick, contact-less, cashless payments.

With retailers like Amazon spearheading retail technology with stores like Amazon Go, which builds on the ultimate contactless in-store experience - it allows the customers to walk in stores, pick up anything they like, and walk out with a tap of their mobile devices without having to physically spend time "paying."

What is SFP?

The SFP mobile app will allow users to scan product barcodes - updates on prices, stock, detailed information regarding the item will be updated immediately through the app and will allow users to compare and make informed decisions on their purchases.

The app will also be location sensitive, to mimic a GPS enabled shopping cart. The user may search or scan an item and the mobile app will provide directions to aisle locations that will guide them to their desired item. Customers may then pay for these items in their cart, eliminating the need to stand in line for check out. As a security feature, the app also generates a secure "holographic" QR code for a receipt of payment.

Technologies

We started with mind maps and wireframes to brainstorm how we could create technology that would disrupt the way that people shopped in stores.

The key element to our app is the scanner, which could scan and identify barcodes, and offer more information about the item to the customer - which was built using ZXING for barcode scanning. For the receipt of purchases, one of Google's APIs was used for QR code generation. Finally, the entire app was brought together with Android Studio.

For the interaction design aspects, we started off wireframing with Whimsical, ported the wireframes to Sketch, created a style guide, created an InVision prototype, and finally created our production mockup.

Challenges We Ran Into

  • Implementing the UI with the backend
  • First time using Android Studio
  • First time using barcode scanner (ZXING)
  • First time using QR code generator
  • Technical difficulties
  • Lack of sleep
  • Missing a team member

Accomplishments That We're Proud Of

  • A prototype design that is streamlined and user focused
  • First time using Android Studio
  • First time using barcode scanner (ZXING)
  • First time using QR code generator

What We Learned

  • How to use Android Studio
  • How to implement barcode scanner (ZXING) and QR code generator APIs

What's Next for SFP - Smart Fashion Platform

  • Completely implementing the backend with the UI to make a complete working app
  • Integrating the GPS function to guide user to in-store aisle locations

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