At NRF this year, tablets were everywhere

If you're a regular attendee of the NRF "Big Show," held in New York in January each year, you see trends come and go. Next-big-thing candidates ripple across the exhibit floor from year to year, and this one was clearly the year of the tablet.

There were many, many companies this year looking to entice retailers into outfitting stores with their tablet-based solution, most of them more alike than different. Video highlights of a few of them are below, from Microsoft, ShopKeep and Zebra, respectively.

What will be interesting to watch in the coming months, as retailers move to a store design scheme that incorporates tablets, will be the evolution of the software feature sets. How important will wish lists be? In the cloud, or not in the cloud? And given our editorial focus, we have to ask the question that we haven't heard asked yet: Do customers want more technology in stores?

There's a lot of competition in this space — and a whole lot of room for innovation.

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