Retail Rundown

Manufacturing

Tech giant Samsung Electronics plans to sell refurbished versions of the Galaxy Note 7 smartphones, the company said late on Monday, signaling the return of the model pulled from markets last year because of fire-prone batteries. Samsung’s Note 7s were permanently scrapped in October after some phones self-combusted, prompting a global recall roughly two months after the launch of the near-$900 devices. A subsequent investigation found manufacturing problems in batteries supplied by two companies – Samsung SDI Co and Amperex Technology.

Analysis from Samsung and independent researchers found no other problems in the Note 7 devices except the batteries, raising speculation that Samsung will recoup some of its losses by selling refurbished Note 7s.

Samsung’s announcement that revamped Note 7s will go back on sale, however, surprised some with the timing – only days before it launches its new S8 smartphone on Wednesday in the United States, its first new premium phone since the debacle last year. Under pressure to turn its image around after the burning battery scandal, Samsung had previously not commented on its plans for recovered phones.

Samsung Plans to Sell Refurbished Galaxy Note7


Retail Technology

A growing number of women, like Parkes and Berzowska, are getting involved with wearable startups. They are bringing a new sense of possibility to the industry as a whole. “Yes, more women might be joining. But what you’re seeing is that wearable devices need differentiation,” Parkes says. “Tech does need fashion to make better products… they are trying to reach across the aisle more on both sides. It was kind of a wakeup when Fossil bought [fitness tracker brand] Misfit.”

The wearable tech industry is facing a sort of midlife crisis. Although there is growing market for wearables, stocks for industry leaders like Fitbit have taken a sharp downturn. Studies seem to disprove the idea that fitness devices consistently help people lose weight. However, there is a sector of the industry that is still attracting new pools of customers: wearables for women’s health.

These high-tech pendants do more than track physical activity and sleep like regular fitness devices. They can keep tabs on users’ mental health by monitoring physical symptoms of stress and track their menstrual cycles, too.For mental health concerns, the device goes the extra mile, connecting to a corresponding app with guided meditation exercises and data timelines that help users plan to proactively manage stress.

High-tech fashion could be a huge part of preventative treatment in the near future. “A lot of the indicators of disease are really about when do you notice a change,” Parkes adds. “The buildup of data is what allows us to make that comparison.”

Designers Are Hacking Women’s Health With Wearable Tech


Brick and Mortar

Amazon is continuing to change the game of retail. Amazon is testing out Amazon Fresh Pickup in the Seattle area allowing customers to order groceries online, then set a time for pickup as soon as 15 minutes after they place the order. At an AmazonFresh pickup location, employees will load the groceries into customers’ cars. Amazon says customers can order thousands of groceries including meat, dairy, and fresh produce.

Amazon’s Drive Up Grocery Service


Consumer Trends

Experts say it’s probably safe to assume grocery e-commerce won’t overtake in-store shopping, but it begs the question: Who is buying their milk, bread and produce online these days?

According to NPD Group, a market research firm, more than 40 percent of primary grocery shoppers are men, and 60 percent of them – those in the millennial and Gen Z group between the ages of 18-44 – have bought their groceries online.

Other trends that NPD noticed that men tend to make grocery shopping a “mission” and spend the least amount of in the physical store. Also the increase of people delaying marriage or other family formation to focus on a career are the majority of internet users. Therefore they’re more likely to be the online shopper retailers should focus on.
Why Millennial Men Are More Likely to Grocery Shop Online


I am currently a senior majoring in Retailing and Consumer Sciences while minoring in e-commerce. I hold the position of Social Media Manager for the Terry J. Lundgren Center For Retailing at the University of Arizona, where I am responsible for creating social media platforms that not only enhance our brand but also educate the world about retail trends. I am what you call a Retail Enthusiast, I am intrigued by the way the retail industry is evolving and what it has to offer. In my free time, I enjoy the outdoors, yoga, good music, and good company.