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Kroger, Microsoft Create Futuristic Grocery Store

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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella (left) and Kroger CEO RodneyMcMullen.

Kroger Co. and Microsoft Corp. are joining forces to bring online shopping to brick-and-mortar grocery stores.

Credit: Brian Smale

Microsoft and the Kroger supermarket chain are collaborating on online grocery shopping, with Kroger having reworked two stores as a testbed for "digital shelves" that display ads and change prices on the fly, and a sensor network to monitor products and expedite shopping.

Customers using Kroger's self-checkout app are directed through the stores to items on their shopping list, with the shelves showing personalized icons selected by shoppers below the relevant item.

The shelves also illuminate to help staff pick orders for Kroger's curbside grocery pickup service.

Artificial intelligence software from Microsoft can predict a customer's age and gender to help vendors customize ads.

Microsoft's incentive for the arrangement is expanding its hybrid cloud, which combines customers' corporate data centers with the company's own.

From Bloomberg
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