Acuant has partnered with Aila to create a fast, secure, scalable ID verification solution, complete with sleek iPad enclosure, effortless scanning technology, and seamless verification and authentication services. Learn more about Aila through this Q&A with Ryan Salinger, Aila’s Product Manager.
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself and your company?
I’m Ryan, a product manager at Aila. I help develop new tools, capabilities, and solutions that our enterprise clients can use to provide more efficient processes and more engaging experiences for customers and associates.
Aila delivers seamless experiences for enterprise companies. Specifically, we offer a suite of fixed and mobile iOS-based products designed for end users, along with proprietary computer vision technology—mainly for barcode and ID scanning. Our products work in conjunction with iOS-based software to bridge the gap between digital and physical, enabling enterprises to deploy delight end users with powerful omnichannel experiences, generate actionable data from in-store shopping behavior, and empower associates with sleek, versatile tools.
2. Who are Aila’s typical customers? What problems do you solve for them?
Digital disruption has been particularly transformative in brick-and-mortar retail, and as a result, we’ve helped many leading retail brands improve their in-store capabilities and experiences. Those include American Eagle, Rent the Runway, Ulta Beauty, Staples, and Stop & Shop, among many others. We also work with leading healthcare and medical diagnostics providers, by enabling experiences such as faster, more secure registration and self check-in workflows.
We help our customers utilize technology to elevate end-user experiences throughout the brick and mortar environment. Current deployments cover a wide variety of use cases, from simple price checking and custom ordering to point of sale, self checkout, registration, appointment making, and much more.
3. What are some of the main challenges in this space?
Consumers have come to expect the same frictionless experiences in brick-and-mortar that they receive online. Unfortunately, traditional retail technology hasn’t always risen to the same bar. Many enterprises suffer from technology debt, having built out solutions using siloed, expensive custom-built hardware and software. The challenges with old IT infrastructure are numerous, but perhaps worst of all, it doesn’t usually have the flexibility needed to keep up with rapidly changing demands for customer experiences and modern, streamlined workflows. On an even broader sense, technology is advancing so quickly that the traditional enterprise technology deployment cycle, where it often takes multiple years to develop, test, pilot and roll out new solutions, is simply too slow. Enterprise companies need to be able to innovate quickly and nimbly. We help enable that through versatile systems, built on top of iOS hardware, that are enterprise-ready and easy to integrate, deploy, and use.
4. How have Aila’s products evolved over time?
Our products are continuously evolving as we find new ways to leverage digital tools and new technologies in the physical world. On a practical level, we’re unlocking the incredible power of today’s smartphones and tablets so they can be used in retail, healthcare, logistics, and other enterprise use cases. In the beginning , this started with simple device enclosures. However, this expanded greatly with the development of our proprietary TrueScan technology, which enables the cameras on iOS devices to be used for crisp, clean, fast image capture. This primarily means best-in-class barcode scanning for many customers, but it also enables more advanced computer vision use cases.
Going forward, we are excited to continue to expand our software offerings that augment and add new capabilities to our hardware products. For instance, SoftScan is a new software-based scanning product that enables effortless barcode capture on any iOS device and can be integrated into any iOS application.
5. What do you have planned for the future? Where do you see untapped opportunities in the market?
Aila will continue doing everything we can to elevate the conversation about how technology can be used in brick-and-mortar. Beyond the point solutions of the past, we want retailers to think about their technology stack as a platform for innovation—upon which they can test, learn and evolve. This will mean delivering more engaging experiences and streamlining operations for smarter, more seamless interactions—without getting locked into clunky, expensive hardware that can’t adapt to changing needs. We know that consumer expectations will continue to change, and we want to make sure retailers are ready to evolve and meet those needs.
6. Why is Acuant a good fit as a partner for you?
Acuant’s world-class solutions for ID verification, ID authentication, biometrics, and form completion perfectly complement Aila’s image capture, opening up exciting new opportunities to add even more value to our enterprise customers, increasing the functionality and capabilities of our technology platform.