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When we look at most retail industries across the retail and hospitality sectors and beyond, one of the driving forces for change and development is technology and the rise in digitalisation. It is a mark of how much the industry has grown in the last few decades that now, more than ever, technology and electronics devices are now owned by more individuals than ever before; operating and expanding on a global scale, with retailers all over the world providing affordable solutions which rely on everything from personalisation to various vouchers and deals in order to expand the consumer and target customer base and create a growing demand.
This shows the scale of technology’s reach and demonstrates simply how transformational it has been – but what happens when you remove the influences of other sectors and industries and just look at technology on its own?
To make something electrical is to take the innovation of technology and present it in such a way that the product or service becomes supported by an automated and/or digital display. For the most part, electric and technology influences are driven by demand and the idea that utilising them can elevate a product or service beyond its baseline capability – with more and more industries and products taking the enhanced experience of using technology and creating more consumer demand by making products affordable, attainable, and enticing. It all comes down to working out how the experience can be elevated through the use of electrical and technological advancement, and how technology can be tailored to a specific brand or company in order to mimic its values.
When we look back at the history and the rise of technology, it becomes abundantly clear that technology is linked closely with innovation – and that innovation is what has driven humanity and other species forward for the best part of our entire existence. From fire, to sailing boats, hunting weapons and irrigation systems, all of these concepts were drawn from ideas which individuals developed and honed into usable tools and industries. Modern technology boasts a similar beginning to all of these things – with very specific individuals and big industry names responsible for various areas of growth through the years.
The first signs of electrics in society meanwhile, came from the electrical light bulb – all thanks to Thomas Edison who found a way to create a light which could burn long after everything else has burned out. In 1882, Edison’s first power plant was opened, and the rest is truly history – leading to the development of the radio, television, automobiles and more.
Did you know that the first personal computer was created and launched in the same year as the internet – and that the year of launch wasn’t as long ago as we might think, stood firm in 1974? Of course, once these technology leaders has been invented, the stage was set for innovation and development – and that has never really stopped! Today, every new product and service which is launched boasts new and improved areas which are built from that original invention: a smaller product body; a thinner screen; a faster download time; a wider selection of options; more personalisation and tailored features; the list goes on.
One of the most modern concepts in the electric and technology industry is the rise in Artificial Intelligence; something which is only now starting to come to light as a potential solution to some of the world’s problems, but which still has a long way to go in terms of development. Common examples of AI in use right now include gaming experiences, household assistants like Alexa and the Amazon Echo, and Capitan which anticipates what you will need to add to your grocery shopping list before you even check the fridge by learning your habits and providing support in helping you ensure you get everything you need. In short, both electric and technology advances in the last century have been designed to make everyday life easier – whether that be the invention of a car, a lightbulb, or a smart shopping assistant.
With that said, how do other industries use electrical and technology influences, and are there areas of innovation and development which serve both private users and commercial companies and sectors?
We have become so used to technology and electrics that we largely forget they are even there – taking for granted the ease with which we can contact our friends and family, check the latest train times before we travel, and even quickly browse and order a meal for takeaway within the next hour. All over the world, users both private and commercial are becoming ever more demanding in the face of technology development – striving to find new ways of reaching others and communicating in various ways.
In a company or retail setting, this means creating harmony between the technical and the physical touchpoints of the business. Whether you are a bank, a fashion retailer or a restaurant, technology means that you can present a high quality experience in store or in your specific branch, backed up by complimentary technology experiences which provide new and improved ways of engaging with the company or brand. This could be in advertising, in browsing, in reviewing or in purchasing – whatever it is, it’s built around convenience.
Technology has also changed the way in which businesses operate. It has allowed individuals to work remotely. It has allowed companies to expand globally and retain important communications. It has led to the rise of social media and digital platforms, and it has changed the way we approach design and customer marketing.
Pull this all together and you can clearly see a pattern in the way that the consumer currently uses technology; providing clear indication of how those same consumers want technology and electronics to continue to grow. We want to consistently say that technology makes our lives easier and gives us access to more.
Meanwhile, the electrics industry has very much taken a turn in the direction of enhanced experience – while technology deals with convenience and ease and is constantly evolving to makes life more streamlined and seamless, electrics are there to make entertainment more attainable and to make everyday items more reliable. A great example of the electrical industry in action is gaming and the way that electronic games have evolved over the last few decades to now utilise new areas of technology advancement including AI to provide experiences which are bigger, better and more immersive.
Another example of electronics in action can be seen through office spaces and working lives – creating computers, electric printers, accessories and add-ons which make the office a more productive space and essentially provide the pathways to increase technological reliance. The biggest sector in the electronics industry is B2B ecommerce – business to business – which sits above even the technology industry and mobile technology. What this means is that the largest area of the entire electric industry relies on business relations and the sales of products and services between companies which elevate and improve each other’s offerings and client services.
When we look at the electrical and technology industry as a whole, there are a number of standout names and brands which hold clear dominance over certain areas of the sector.
With regards to technology, the top brands are those which not only own and sell the most products, but which also offer the widest variety of services and innovative products, and which hold the largest following. Thus, while Apple sits in second position despite its huge variety of high end and luxury products which are used in some capacity by companies and individuals all over the world, it is in fact Google which sits in the top position as the number one brand name in the technology industry. This is because what Google offers is a multinational technology which focuses on various industries and areas: including advertising online, internet searching, hardware and storage – as well as its own range of products. Other Google services include web-based communication tools, advertising platforms, map-related tools, security and statistics tools, and desktop and mobile applications to name but a few.
Apple, in second position, was found in 1976 – just two short years after the launch of the internet – and has since gone from strength to strength with its variety of leading mobile and personal device products which offer an experience unlike any other. Innovation is at the heart of the Apple operation, with the company owning a huge selection of hardware products and online services; creating all the software which supports their own products for a completely streamlined Apple-led service which does not rely on any other industry names or suppliers to provide a great user experience.
Other big retail and brand names in the technology industry include:
When it comes to the big retail names in the Electrics industry, you have the manufacturer names like Microsoft and Samsung, and then you have the brand names of those stores and retailers which sell them. Amazon sits at the top of the list, not only serving as the biggest supplier of electronics all over the world, but also now owning their own line of products which are designed to take popular technologies and place them in a home setting for user ease and enjoyment. Amazon Prime is one such example which gives users access to the Amazon streaming network and also supports Amazon delivery – meanwhile the Amazon Echo is a physical accessory which essentially works as a home assistant and offers command over all the electrical products in the home. What Amazon does is create a seamless experience whereby the entire home is enhanced by the presence of electronics.
Another big name in the electronics industry is Euronics International, which stocks and sells a wide variety of electronics industry brands and names all over the world – offering expertise, a high level of service, a huge array of products across different areas and sectors, and affordable prices which benefit from sporadic deals and discounts.
In providing a great customer experience and to ensure that consumers are constantly looking to elevate their own personal devices and technology products, one of the main trends we see in the electric and technology industry is the use of demonstrations and testers in stores – giving consumers a chance to experience the innovation for themselves. Much of the electrics and technology industry as a whole relies on the concept that consumers do not know what they need until they see it – before the invention of television, nobody knew it was what they needed. Likewise, before AI and virtual reality was developed and used to elevate gaming experiences to become more immersive, users felt like what they had on their computer screens was enough.
The fact is that technology on the whole relies on innovation and development in order to stay relevant – and it is this that pushes technology into every corner of every industry, enhancing experiences and elevating end products. As the industry continues to grow and expand across different areas of life, one of the most important things that retailers and brands alike must focus on is ensuring that these products and services continue to make life easier and not more complex – and that they remain affordable to the mass market. There will always be consumers that want and covet the latest product – and there will always be those that wait for the hype around a new product to ease before they buy it at a lower price. And then there are those who look to use vouchers and deals – shopping around and exploring different retailers until they find the best product at the best price.
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