Retail shrinkage is a multi-billion-dollar sore fundamental problem in the retail industry. According to the National Retail Federation, in 2019, the inventory loss due to shoplifting, employee theft, or other errors and fraud reached $61.7 billion in the United States alone. To overcome the issue, retailers have implemented various loss prevention strategies and techniques, from electronic article surveillance, reporting systems, surveillance cameras, and plenty of policies to control the shrink.
Computer vision and artificial intelligence have been used for years in the media and entertainment industries—but thanks to recent advances in deep learning, the potential applications of image recognition are broader than ever before. What’s more, these technological developments coincide with an explosion in the use of images and videos, especially for marketing and advertising purposes. It’s estimated that 1 trillion photos were taken in 2015 alone, and posts with visual content receive 94 percent more visits and engagements than text-only posts.