Microsoft is aiming to create intelligent systems that transform one-off applications, databases and devices such as barcode scanners into an end-to-end solution.
This solution, according to John Boladian, group marketing manager, Microsoft, generates a richer level of data about nearly every facet of a retailer's business.
This data can provide very accurate sales forecasts, more effective pricing models and a better understanding of customer behaviour.
Boladian made this announcement at RetailTech Japan, one of the retail industry's largest annual events. He elaborated on Windows Embedded's vision for intelligent systems and highlighted the potential of intelligent systems specifically in the Asia Pacific region.
Microsoft notes that retailers in Japan and elsewhere in Asia use solutions powered by Windows Embedded and expects the global market for intelligent systems to double by 2015.
Predicting a rather bullish outlook for intelligent systems, Microsoft notes that a large portion of the global demand for intelligent systems will be for the retail industry.
This demand will result in a compound annual growth rate of 13 percent between now and 2015, according to IDS's 'Worldwide Intelligent Systems 2011-2015 Forecast: The Next Big Opportunity, September 2011'.
Microsoft has already announced many products designed to help deliver on some aspects of an intelligent system, including Windows Embedded Standard, Windows Embedded POSReady 7 and Windows Embedded Device Manager 2011.
NEC, Toshiba TEC and Fujitsu are each working with Windows Embedded to deliver intelligent systems for retail.
Fujitsu is working on intelligent systems and recently released the POS 7000, which is certified for Windows Embedded POS Ready 7.
"Because of the economic situation, retail customers are facing many difficulties recently, and because of that, use of data and information is becoming increasingly important," said Ryuji Kanno, senior vice president of Fujitsu's Retail Business Group. "So therefore, the one important keyword and basic principle of intelligent systems is the unified management of information."
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