In a warning sign for AWS that Amazon’s relentless expansion into new sectors – from groceries to satellite ground stations– may be causing concern among enterprises about hosting their data on its cloud, retail intelligence company Trax today said it had signed a deal with Google Cloud, in part following pressure from retail clients.
Trax, headquartered in Singapore, currently works with two-thirds of the world’s leading consumer package goods (CPG) companies. It uses a combination of cameras on shelves, computer vision and advanced analytics (as well as a smartphone app) to generate high-speed data about every stock keeping unit (SKU) on the shelf.
Trax Google Cloud Deal: More Processing at the Edge
Joel Bar-El, Trax’s CEO and co-founder said in a release: “About 90% of shopping worldwide is still done in physical stores. It’s our mission to provide ‘eyes in the store’ on every SKU. Working with Google Cloud, we can help retailers… improve on-shelf availability, forecasting, click-and-collect processes, and, ultimately, to modernise the shopping experience as online and offline converge.”
Yet the decision comes in part after the company – previously AWS-hosted – faced pressure from retail clients uncomfortable hosting their commercial data with AWS, Trax’s team admitted on a call with Computer Business Review.
Trax’s Mark Cook, VP of Retail said: “Our retail customers are not always comfortable with Amazon. They have been telling us its important to have a partner like who Google who is – they perceive Google as an impartial party.”
He added: “We’ve also been working with GCP to deliver data closer to the edge”.
Most stores will have one lightweight server in-house to handle data from the array of cameras Trax provides. An additional server is typically added to the store for those looking for edge-processing, which means data gets to users faster.
He added in a release: “Google Cloud provides the secure computing power to capture tens of thousands of SKUs across an entire store within milliseconds and produce real-time insights with our image recognition engines that can rapidly address any out-of-stocks or other shelf-execution gaps.”
Trax has around 80 global customers on the CPG side.
The majority of its manufacturer clients are with AWS, the company said.
AWS has been contacted for comment. The company has faced similar concerns before and says “we do not access or use your content for any purpose without your consent. We never use your content or derive information from it for marketing or advertising.”
“We offer customers strong encryption for your content in transit and at rest, and we provide you with the option to manage your own encryption keys” it adds.