It’s a well-hidden fact that I’m a huge Games Workshop (GW) nerd. After being distracted from the hobby for the better part of the last decade, I was pleased to see that my favorite hobby store was (slowly) embracing digital technologies in their retail locations.
As large part of the hobby revolves around ‘conversion’ of existing models into your own creations, involving an incredible amount of unique plastic bits available for purchase, GW always struggled with presenting available options to their in-store customers. Previously the stores used a stack of tattered catalogues to showcase additional bits and obscure models available for mail-order or sent the customer to do their own research online.
A new initiative, seen here in one of the Toronto stores, uses an in-store networked terminal to allow the staff guide the customer and order the product on the spot via their corporate website.
The ‘kiosk’ uses a wall-mounted monitor wrapped in an attractive branded foam-board frame with a standard keyboard and mouse for the input interface. An HP thin client, hidden behind the monitor, runs a full-screen browser to display web content. I was told the internet access is locked-down to the GW Corporate website and does not permit idle browsing.
When not in use, the kiosk defaults to an attractive screen-saver loop promoting latest model releases. Content is updated with each major launch.
I would estimate that this set-up could run as low as $1500 installed per store, and although imperfect (a better input interface, such as a touch screen, would be nice) it fits well with the décor, while significantly increasing access to product information and enabling on-site ordering for mail-order items.