Five Cool Mobile Retail Apps

Mobile retail apps are nothing new, but retailers are constantly adding new features and functions that maximize their reach and value. Here’s a brief look at five cool mobile retail apps that have all been launched or piloted in the past few months:

Amazon.com Mobile Associates API
Amazon.com has introduced the Mobile Associates API for Kindle Fire and other Android devices, enabling developers and members of the Amazon Associates program (the API is technically an extension of the program) to sell physical and digital items from Amazon.com within their apps and games.

When using the new API, developers earn up to 6% on qualifying in-app customer purchases and can allow customers to buy and receive goods through Amazon’s 1-Click purchase mechanism and Amazon Prime shipping, where available. The API can be used in the Amazon Appstore and in Google Play.

Harris Teeter HT Express Pay
In a pilot at its Matthews, N.C. store, Harris Teeter is using Paydiant's white label mobile wallet solution as part of its Express Lane online shopping service. The deployment allows Express Lane customers to use the Harris Teeter mobile wallet called “HT Express Pay” for groceries ordered online.

Once the Harris Teeter mobile wallet app is downloaded to the customer’s iPhone or Android smartphone and payment cards are linked to the wallet, the customer scans a QR code on a Verifone handheld mobile POS device. From there, the customer uses the mobile wallet to choose a major credit card, taps the “pay” button, and automatically receives a mobile digital receipt.

McDonald’s Mobile Payment App
McDonald’s is currently testing an advance payment smartphone/tablet app in the Austin, Texas and Salt Lake City markets. The app allows customers to order and pay for food from a local store via mobile device and then pick it up at the counter or drive-thru window. The app also delivers promotions and loyalty rewards.

The advance payment functionality builds on top of capabilities in the existing McDonald’s mobile app, such as a store locator, nutritional information and job listings.

Staples Connect App
Staples is introducing Staples Connect, an offering that lets customers’ home or office technology interact and be controlled by a single free app. Staples Connect lets customers physically shut down their office while at the same time turning on their lights and heat at home.

Staples Connect consists of a multi-platform app and the Staples Connect Hub, powered by Linksys, which will be available online and in select Staples stores for $99 this November. Staples Connect uses a platform developed by Zonoff Inc.

Uniqlo USA App
Japanese apparel retailer Uniqlo has created the free Uniqlo USA app for Apple products. It will be available on Android devices later this year.

By using the app’s Virtual Cam on Uniqlo logos and icons, consumers will have access to behind-the-scenes videos, current employment opportunities, “weekly favorites” and a store locator. They will also receive advance notice of new arrivals, designer collaborations and special promotions.