Shopping centre giant Westfield is partnering with eBay this Christmas to offer the world a sneak peek at the mall of the future. A bunch of touchscreens.
Sony, Toms, and Rebecca Minkoff are all simulating the experience of shopping online by offering digital storefronts that amount to heavily branded kiosks where you can order stuff that will then be delivered to your house. After all, why shop online from the comfort of your own home, when you can simply drive to a shopping centre, fight for a parking spot, walk inside amongst the crowds of families and screaming children, wait in queue after queue, and then punch in your order on a touchscreen, before turning around and driving back home again?
Think of it this way, though: shopping centres will have to find some use for all that space when people forget how to buy things from other people. Turning into giant touchscreens is at least one attempt to save themselves.