Home Depot Inc. will make its biggest investment of 2010 in more than 10,000 portable devices that will help U.S. employees stock shelves, make telephone calls and check out customers anywhere in the store.
Home Depot said the handheld gadgets will cost about $60m. For the past decade, employees of the world's largest home-improvement retailer have managed inventory using computers powered by motorboat batteries on rolling carts.
"If you compare us to a world-class retailer, from a technology perspective, 1991 is kind of where we are pegged," said Matt Carey, hired as Home Depot's chief information officer in 2008 from EBay Inc. "This is the first big customer-service tool we've given our associates in a very long time."
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