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Today in Retail: Amazon, Walmart See Frozen Shares of Electronics Sales; Nextech to Make AR More Widely Available for Merchants

In today’s top retail news, Amazon and Walmart’s shares of electronics and appliance sales have remained relatively unchanged in the first six months of the year, and Nextech AR Solutions says it will begin offering augmented reality (AR) software to more merchants next month. Also, Allbirds and On Holding are trying to take on Nike as they prepare to go public, and in-store fulfillment is providing retailers with some new challenges.

No Pain, No Gain: Amazon and Walmart’s Fight for Electronics Share Stagnates

Amazon and Walmart have both seen their share of electronics and appliance sales remain relatively unchanged for the past two quarters, with Walmart struggling to make up any of the ground it lost in the past decade. Looking at PYMNTS’ proprietary data, Amazon holds nearly a quarter of consumers’ electronics and appliance purchases as of the second quarter, while Walmart has just one-fifth of that.

Nextech AR to Make SaaS Option Available in October

Nextech AR Solutions Corp. is making its eCommerce-focused AR offering available as a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solution in early October, bringing the burgeoning technology to a wider range of merchants. Nextech said its artificial intelligence (AI)-powered technology will allow the company to offer the AR technology to eCommerce site owners at an affordable price.

Sneaker Startup IPOs Take a Run at Nike

In the past two weeks, two different direct-to-consumer (D2C) sneaker brands have each filed for an initial public offering (IPO) with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), a sign of how competitive the footwear and apparel market has become. Last week, Allbirds said it planned to move forward with an IPO even though it’s lost money since its inception and will continue to be unprofitable. And earlier this week, On Holding, a shoemaker backed by tennis star Roger Federer, said it was aiming for a $6 billion valuation when it makes its public debut.

In-Store Fulfillment Creates ‘New and Unusual Workloads’ for Retailers

Suresh Menon, senior vice president and general manager for software solutions at Zebra Technologies, told PYMNTS that as consumers continue to gravitate toward in-store fulfillment options, retailers are having to adapt to new workloads that can increase costs of inventory and labor. According to PYMNTS research, nearly 44% of consumers say that BOPIS capabilities would encourage them to shop at physical stores, while 42% said the same for curbside pickup.

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