Just a few years ago, retailers considered smartphones the enemy of the in-store experience they were trying to create. Customers often whipped out their device to compare prices online and then walked out of the store to buy the same product elsewhere. Today, stores are taking their cues from shoppers and now consider the smartphone their friend. They’re giving shoppers more control over the experience with smartphone app features that let customers do things like scan and pay, as well as download digital maps — and replicate the online experience. Nike created a buzz last month when it unveiled two new features on its mobile app during the opening of its latest high tech store in New York City. One feature lets shoppers see details of every item displayed on a mannequin by scanning the QR code next to it. Then with just a click, they can have the looks delivered to a fitting room or a designated pickup spot without ever talking to a store clerk. Another feature, instant checkout, lets customers who’ve stored their credit card information on their phone scan the barcode of an item, click the purchase button, then walk right out of the store. Read more at The Virginian-Pilot.