The back-to-school shopping season is in full swing, and Office Depot is ready.

With back-to-school spending expected to reach $83.6 billion, an increase of more than 10% over last year’s $75.8 billion, according to the National Retail Federation, Office Depot is eager to grab its portion of this back-to-school wallet share. To achieve this goal, the office supplies retailer is diversifying assortments and stepping up fulfillment efforts.

Office Depot’s senior VP of merchandising Petter Knutrud shared insight into how the company is preparing for last-minute shoppers with Chain Store Age.

CSA: How are shoppers’ school supply needs changing?

PK: Students are increasingly looking for high performance laptops that can function for schoolwork by day, and handle highly-designed video games by night. That said, gaming and Windows “Ink” technology are all trends this back-to-school season.

Petter Knutrud

Office Depot is stocking more computers with graphics processing units (GPUs) — or a dedicated graphics card — which address this need and the broader trend of gaming. Windows “Ink” technology lets students ‘write’ notes on touchscreen laptops with an active pen stylus that works with a broader range of touch-enabled laptops.

Even with the latest technology updates, students still heavily…