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Ocado takes its virtual shop concept to Birmingham’s Bullring

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Ocado has set up virtual shop in Birmingham’s Bullring, where for the next month shoppers can order local specialities such as balti, HP sauce and pork faggots from a window display, using only their smartphone.

The foods are among a range of items on show in the Bullring until August 16, which shoppers can buy and arrange delivery simply by scanning the relevant barcode with their phones.

This is a return to a way of shopping that Ocado first tested out last summer, when it set up its first virtual shopping display in London’s One New Change shopping centre. Since then it’s gone on to run a similar event in Bristol’s Cabot Circus mall.

Mobile is a key channel for Ocado, which says that in June 2012 mobile devices were used in 24% of checkouts.

“We could not be more excited about bringing our virtual window shopping experience to the Bullring,” said Jason Gissing, co-founder of Ocado.

“Birmingham has long been Britain’s second city, and with so many of our dedicated customers living in the area it makes perfect sense to take our virtual store to their doorstep. The Bullring shopping centre is such an iconic location, and we can’t wait to see how much easier this will make the lives of both our existing fans and new customers alike, as they use our innovative service to take away the hassle of the weekly shop – no crowds, no long checkout queues, no heavy bags; this is the future of retail in the UK, and it’s here right now.”

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