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Best Buy unveils mobile consumer electronics marketplace

Best Buy Co. Inc. and Fuse Capital have unveiled the Tecca personal electronics shopping and information service that is available via smartphone applications and soon via the mobile Web and tablets.

Tecca combines product information, pricing and knowledge with direct shopping access to the top seller-rated online electronics retailers—not just Best Buy—in a single digital marketplace. The Tecca mobile application is available today via the Apple App Store and the Google Android Market, with mobile Web, PC and tablet versions set to launch later this fall.

“Our goal is to help the common consumer with the big technology challenges that are out there, as people can be confused by the dizzying array of options out there,” said Ben Feinman, vice president of marketing and products at Tecca, Santa Monica, CA. “We want to boil it down and simplify it for the common person.

“We believe users are most interested in product reviews, and Tecca lets them do some comparison-shopping on the fly,” he said. “Best Buy is a big part of the equation, but we are fully independent, so we’ll be pulling in different partners over time, as well as user reviews.

“Although we are backed by Best Buy and Fuse Capital, we have opened this up to many other merchants via our relationship with Google, and we’ve integrated its product database.”

Tecca is a personal electronics shopping and information service designed to help consumers discover, research and buy personal electronics and learn ways to make the most of the technology they already own.

Fuse Capital is an investment and strategic equity management firm that focuses on digital media and communications.

Mobile shopping apps
The speed at which technology evolves affects everyone, and constant innovation can be overwhelming for consumers, per Tecca.

Best Buy and Fuse Capital launched Tecca with the goal of providing new and socially connected ways to help improve the way consumers buy, manage and use their own personal technology.

By curating product information, pricing and knowledge from the top-rated online retailers and publishers and providing original content from its own internal editorial team, Tecca helps consumers understand new technology, products and services.

Here is a screen grab of the application:

Consumers can also use the Tecca applications to compare features, functions and pricing, purchase through trusted retailers, and learn ways to make the most of the technology they already own.

With the mobile application, users can browse or search products, or simply scan the bar code, and Tecca will recognize the product and provide pricing and information.

Thanks to smartphones, mobile technology and social commerce, consumers have more opportunities than ever to bridge their physical and digital shopping experiences, per Best Buy.

Here is another screen grab of the application:

This first installment of the Tecca service is focused on three key themes:

•    Product discovery, letting consumers search, browse, scan and tag thousands of products

•    Product research, offering consumers user reviews, image galleries and product specs

•    Product marketplace, letting consumers compare prices and buy from various merchants

The launch of the mobile applications is the first step in the Tecca product rollout, which will include a broader suite of services.

Over time, Tecca will offer a range of information covering the lifecycle of product ownership, including resale and recycling options for old or obsolete technology. It will also enable one-click purchasing for the holiday season.

“The in-app commerce element is that consumers can browse Tecca to find the lowest price for a product from a variety of different merchants,” Mr. Feinman said. “The app brings a range of prices from a bunch of other folks in addition to Best Buy.

“Our goal is to bridge the physical retail space and the digital world—we send users to the retailer’s site with the cart already populated, and over time we’ll be enabling one-click purchasing within the application,” he said. “Selling is definitely a big part of what we do, but we want to be there for the users even after the sale.

“Over time we’ll provide the ability for users to resell those products—we’re really thinking about the whole lifecycle of consumer electronics, not just the selling.”

Final Take
Dan Butcher, associate editor, Mobile Commerce Daily