Author: Wang Yanhua
Walmart has developed a registration-based user interface using blockchain. It tracks the products customers buy and allows customers to resell items that they have purchased from Walmart.
Walmart aims to let customers who want to resell their items to have access to reliable and persuasive content regarding the items they seek to resell, thus saving themselves time while also knowing that the item is being accurately represented.
The patent noted that:
“Not all customers are necessarily interested in possessing a purchased item for the entire useful life of that item. For example, a customer may purchase a particular item that is required for a particular activity or chore and the customer does not expect to have subsequent need of the item following completion of the corresponding activity. In other cases, a customer who purchases an item can later develop a wish to resell the item for any of a variety of reasons.”
The latest patent is part of Walmart’s overarching plan to modernise as they face increasing competition from non-traditional shopping mechanisms, such as e-commerce.
The patent said, “It can be important for “bricks and mortar” retailers to focus on improving the overall customer experience and/or convenience.”
Walmart has been actively developing blockchain applications.
In April, Frank Yiannas, vice president of food safety and health, announced that the company was ready to use blockchain to improve contamination management and transparency. Yiannas said blockchain was able to cut the time it took to track produce to two seconds from six days.
In March, Walmart filed another patent for a “Smart Package” delivery system that uses a blockchain-based tool for tracking package contents, environmental conditions, and locations.