Retailers use new tech to track you in stores - and in dressing roomsSmart shelves know what products you touch, shopping carts come loaded with tablets, and dressing room mirrors track what you try on and ask for your phone number. The National Retail Federation's annual trade show reveals how tech changes the way we...
Dressing rooms are getting a high tech makeover. I'm Bridget Carey and this is your CNET update. [MUSIC] As consumers we're always on the hunt for new gadgets and sensors to keep us connected or make our lives easier. But retailers are also hungry for new tech, and how it can be used to track us in stores and get us to spend more. I stopped by the National Retail Federation Expo in New York City to see how technology is changing the way we shop. Microsoft showed how the Kinect's camera can be programmed to sense when a customer picks up something from a shelf. In this demo when you pick up a video game, the nearby TV instantly plays the trailer for the game you touched. The connect is tracking the location of what you touched, so a store has to put a product in the right pre-programmed spot for this to work. Future shopping carts could come with tablets. Microsoft also hosted a demo of the Media Cart, it lets you scan items as you shop, so they keep a running tally of your bill. And of course, ads will pop up on the screen as you go through the store. And knows your exact location, so you may see a Kleenex ad when you walk down the tissue aisle. Intel showcased the Memory Mirror. It's now being used at a Neiman Marcus store in Walnut Creek, California. This mirror is really just a giant video screen and camera. It records you giving a spin. So, you can see what you look like from the back or you can show two outfits to try it on side by side. And, you can see instantly what a sweater looks like in a different color as it overlays a new color on you in real time. If you're freaking out about the camera, keep in mind this isn't behind a closed door dressing room. This would be just outside the changing area. Ebay demonstrated a different type of smart changing room mirror it created for Rebecca Minkoff boutiques. There's no camera here, but RFID sensors know exactly which items you brought into the dressing room. And the items show up on the mirror screen. If you need another size or color just select it on the mirror and ask for someone on the floor to bring it to you. The mirror also lets you change the color of the room lighting and it saves data about your session so the store can give you more personalized service. Every store wants your phone number these days and even the mirror asks for your digits. Intel's booth also showed off ways to keep track of products in real time, instead of tracking customers, a business will use RFID tags to track where products move throughout a store. It knows how often a shirt was carried in and out of a dressing room. Your local bar can know exactly how much beer is left in a keg, using connected scales. And if there are already enough screens in your life Martin drink coolers display translucent advertising that can change in real time to promote your local team's game. And of course it tracks how many times you open it. At least it doesn't want you phone number. Yet. For CNET I'm Bridget Carey.