Thanks to my friend Perry over at A Little Geeky for drawing my attention to this article in the Telegraph last week announcing that the supermarket chain Sainsbury’s are trialling some new supermarket trolleys that include an iPad dock.
When I first read the headline I was really excited. What a great plan I thought! I would be able to have my iPad in front of me displaying my shopping list, and enabling me to easily tick things off as I picked them up. But as I read more and more of the article I found myself getting crosser and crosser. Rather than selling the vast range of advantages of having an iPad mounted in your shopping trolley, they’re pitching it at a narrow Market segment…
Apparently these shopping trolleys was actually developed by a certain satellite television company. Sainsbury’s seem to believe they are trying to encourage more men into supermarkets by allowing them to watch TV whilst they go around! And get this – they’ve even fitted sensors to the front of the trolley that will beep if you get too close to another object. So the whole campaign seems to be to drag unwilling men into the supermarket and then have then drive around in a semi comatose state watching the sport! So who’s supposed to be doing the actual shopping? The wife? How would I like to be doing the shopping with the geekdaddy just trailing behind me lost in the iPad? No thank you. Or are the men supposed to do the shopping and watch sports at the same time? Come on, we all know how good men are at multitasking don’t we?! I can see the conversation now – “sorry dear, I forgot the milk – but Arsenal scored just as I got to the dairy aisle!”
So please allow me to make some suggestions as to how I think an iPad mounted in the shopping trolley could really benefit all shoppers.
- easily view and update your shopping list using a variety of apps (I use SplashShopper, but there are loads of others out there!)
- an interactive store plan which knows which store you are in and can help you locate any item you’re looking for
- even better – an app which knows your shopping list and the store you’re in and can sort the items you need to buy by aisle to minimise the number of times you have to walk around the store!
- how about a self scanning accessory for your iPad so that when you add anything to your shopping trolley it automatically knocks it off your shopping list AND alerts you to any relevant special offers
- and finally, turn it around to face the kids sitting in the trolley and have them able to watch their favourite TV shows whilst you’re going around
And that’s just in about 5 minutes thinking about it – I bet there’s loads of other good ideas out there!
So Sainsbury’s, please let go of the age-old stereotypes. I’m glad you’re embracing new technology, but open your minds and find some really innovative new ways of selling the concept to shoppers!
What about you? Do you like the idea of mounting your iPad in your shopping trolley? How would you like to use that kind of system?
Disclosure: This post contains an iTunes affiliate link