In a letter to shareholders in October 2017, Jack Ma – the billionaire founder of Chinese online giant Alibaba – coined the phrase “New Retail” to describe the melding together of real world and digital shopping experiences. This wasn’t just blue-sky thinking. Alibaba plans to open 1,000 smart supermarkets in China in the next five years. Amazon is also launching its first forays into real-world retail. The company is rolling out AI-powered, checkout-free convenience stores. At 72 Spring Street in New York, online reviews decide what goes on the shelves of Amazon’s new store. Until September 2018, the site in lower Manhattan was home to a pop-up lingerie store. Now it hosts Amazon 4-Star, stocking products with a four-star rating or higher, alongside a selection of new and trending items. The shelves have digital displays that update to match online prices, and printed cards feature excerpts from glowing online reviews. Read more at Wired.