Hybris Labs in 2016 – The Year of IoT

Parallel to the SAP Hybris Digital Summit  2017 we want to take a look at the past year through the eyes of Hybris Labs. We decided to name our 2016 “The Year of IoT”. The very first Labs IoT prototype does of course date back to 2014 and came in the shape of the original Smart Wine Shelf. But what we like to refer to as the “mastery of IoT” involves achievements such as the replication and adaptation of our prototypes, enabled through YaaS, the distribution of our demos to events across the globe, and the very first Hybris Labs prototype with an SAP Hybris customer.


BASF & Hybris Wine Shelf

After showing Bullseye at the SAP Hybris Global Summit in Feb 2016 it was “HEINEKEN” who first approached us with a customisation request for an internal event. The result was the beer selector which we then later also showed at the Hybris Americas Customer Days in Fort Lauderdale.

“BASF”, a world leading chemistry company but also one of Germany’s largest wine distributors, decided to take the Bullseye prototype one step further. The BASF & Hybris Wine Shelf is the first pilot project Labs engaged in together with a customer and is currently in use in the BASF “Weinkeller” in Ludwigshafen.


Bottomless shopping carts and robots on trucks

There was more to the past year than just Bullseye. The close collaboration with the SAP Hybris customer “hansgrohe” allowed us to frequently present our Infinite Cart prototype in an eye-catching setup and produce a video that is equally stimulating to its viewers.

Without living up to the clichés that are commonly associated with this term, Hybris Labs are often referred to as rock stars. Reluctantly accepting those honours, we did manage to get one of our team members on a tour bus – the “Beyond CRM Truck”. His name… her… its name: Pepper.

Pepper was the only one of us tough enough to deal with life on the road. As an extension to Bullseye, Pepper handed out candy to truck-visitors all across Europe.


The golden age of computed artificiality

In the past our lay on the digitization of the physical retail space. In 2017 Hybris Labs will be exploring the potential of virtual reality, augmented reality, and artificial intelligence in the shape of voice controlled digital assistants and conversational commerce. We’re hoping to present the first results of this research in spring. With other words: New Hybris Labs prototypes are coming soon!

“What the computer in virtual reality enables us to do is to recalibrate ourselves so that we can start seeing those pieces of information that are invisible to us but have become important for us to understand.” – Douglas Adams

Perhaps we’ll even find the question to the answer “42”…

The Future is upon us 2

… Hopefully this won’t be a sequel that’s worse than the original.

So I showed you what AR is and how it works yesterday, and since the team is also working on some VR stuff (it’s still pretty early in development so don’t expect it any time soon) I decided today I’d discuss VR and its main use in Commerce

Now “what is VR?” you’re probably asking, if you’re not… well don’t worry I’ll just pretend you are. VR stands for virtual reality. This is different from AR in the sense that it doesn’t just add computer generated information to our physical world but instead goes a step further and completely immerses you in a virtual CGI world (Not a single trace of reality, you know unless it’s a gritty realistic FPS you’re simulating)

To put it in an extremely simple way VR is simply tracking the movements of your body and transferring that data into your character’s movements in a virtual world created by the headset (which part of the body it tracks may differ a bit depending on hardware but it’s mostly just head tracking, hence why we mainly have VR headsets). The headset is designed to give you a full first person experience (no screens in the way to break your immersion), so that you feel like you’re actually there in this virtual world.

For an in depth look into how a VR headset actually works check out this link: http://www.wareable.com/vr/how-does-vr-work-explained

VR unlike AR hasn’t been used much in commerce. While VR has its uses there hasn’t been any  real products made or any companies that are actually using it currently, although some big companies are making pushes towards a V(irtual)Commerce platform and they are likely making prototypes as we speak (yea, like what we do. Crazy huh?)

Despite VR’s lack of use in Commerce currently, it still has many potential uses that haven’t been put into practice just yet. The main one is creating a virtual store, where you can wander around the place looking at items as if you were there, except you’ve actually skipped the 40 tedious minutes spent trying to get to that store and then not finding what you want and having to walk to another store that’s on the other side of the shopping mall.

Right now VR shopping poses the potential to be the best of both online and traditional shopping (for example being able to buy from home, able to switch stores at will and able to wander around and find something cool that you weren’t originally looking for).

Well that rounds up this article on VR, I apologise for not going into how the headsets work more myself but honestly that’d make for one insanely long post. Well I hope you enjoyed this and all my other articles, as this is my last one.

Anyways thanks for taking your time to read these and thanks to the Hybris Labs team for taking care of me this past week.