Amazon Tests Cashierless Checkout Technology

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Retail giant Amazon is testing new technology to streamline its customer experience at its physical stores. 

Amazon’s cashierless checkout technology is being tested for use in the company’s larger stores.

The system, which involves a series of cameras and weight sensors to track shoppers’ purchases, was tested this year in smaller convenience stores in Seattle, Chicago, San Francisco and soon New York, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal (WSJ).

The introduction of the technology will see the in-store customer experience become more streamlined and more akin to their online shopping journey.

According to the WSJ report, Amazon is piloting the same technology in a larger space in Seattle, where the ceilings are higher and there are more products to chose from, making the successful implementation of the system more challenging.

Revolutionising the Grocery Market

It is believed that the technology will ultimately be rolled out in Amazon’s Whole Foods stores, which the company acquired in August 2017. Former Whole Foods co-CEO, Walter Robb, believes Amazon’s push for a cashierless store could transform the landscape of grocery shopping.

Robb told CNBC that he thinks it is part of a larger retail revolution and that the grocery retail market is primed for digital disruption. He said that the move to test the technology was very exciting, and would offer the company’s customers a range of wider shopping options and experiences that were not available five years ago.

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If successful, the move could see Amazon cut or re-purpose staff at Whole Foods and help the company to compete with other major grocery retailers, such as Walmart and Sam’s Club. However, Walmart has already ended its Scan-and-Go trial in favour of pursuing similar cashierless technology.



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