Browse Prior Art Database

(RSS) Associating customer WIC-EBT information to a Personal Shopper Device

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000033494D
Original Publication Date: 2004-Dec-13
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2004-Dec-13
Document File: 2 page(s) / 33K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Disclosed is a series of methods to integrate a WIC-EBT customer's data into a Personal Shopper device. A number of new and useful applications and services can be developed once the customer's WIC-EBT information is accessible to and integrated with the personal shopper device.

This text was extracted from a PDF file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 53% of the total text.

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(RSS) Associating customer WIC-EBT information to a Personal Shopper Device

     The typical flow a WIC-EBT shopper will normally take is to first go to the customer service desk and retrieve a balance inquiry. The balance inquiry function gives the shopper a paper receipt that contains the WIC benefits that are retrieved from the customer's WIC-EBT smart card. The customer must reference this list during the shopping session.

     A problem exists that this WIC-EBT data on the receipt is not integrated with other store devices like the new and emerging cart mounted Personal Shopper devices.

     Disclosed is a method to integrate the customer's WIC-EBT data into a Personal Shopper device. A number of new and useful applications and services can be developed once the customer's WIC-EBT information is accessible to and integrated with the personal shopper device.

     The main idea of the invention is the method that is used to integrate the customer data into the personal shopper device.

     It is assumed that the WIC-EBT customer will still initially go to the service desk, since that will be a central location that contains a WIC-EBT smart card reader and it will also be part of the store operating procedures.

     At this point, the WIC-EBT customer indicates that they will also like to use one of the store's personal shopper devices. Then the customer inserts the WIC-EBT smart card into the pin pad/smart card reader and the balance inquiry data is extracted.

     The novel part of the invention is that there is now a new "WIC-EBT customer transaction", a non-sales transaction, that is executed. The new transaction contains the balance inquiry data that was extracted from the smart card.

     Because it is a transaction, the transaction is then suspended at this point in the same way that a normal sales transaction can be suspended.

     A special suspended transaction number is then generated using the customer's PAN (Personal Access Number) and the normal transaction number used by the terminal at the customer service desk.

     The customer then goes to the area of the store to check out one of the personal shopper devices. The customer is then given a personal shopper device to use and the customer identifies themselves to the device by entering the PAN (or other suitable means of identifying the customer e.g. via Digital Signature Verification).

     The software in the personal shopper device then searches the POS controller for any suspended transactions for this PAN and of the special "WIC-EBT customer transaction" type.

     The suspended transaction is then "retrieved" by the personal shopper device and the data is recovered from the specialized non-sale transaction.

     The recovered data is then used to create a new WIC-EBT Balance Data object that contains the information for all of the eligible WIC-EBT items that can be purchased during the shopping s...