Why smart stores don’t check out
I read this article about how future retail stores could look where we don’t even need to check out anymore. We just walk in, take the stuff that we need from the shelves and walk out again. No lines, no waiting time, no requirement for cash.
Amazon is experimenting with its patented “Just Walk-Out Technology”. You scan a QR code when you enter the store. Then various cameras, scales in the floors and shelves observe you and collect data on what you are taking and what you are putting back on the shelf. They can even figure out how long you are hesitating and how easily you can find a product. This is very powerful and could lift the shopping experience into a completely new dimension!
Apparently, it is not scalable yet for a very crowded store, but works with a smaller amount of people. Amazon has not gone live with the concept yet and is still in beta but might go live in a couple of months. I am excited to figure out how it goes. However, we also need to be aware that for the seamless shopping experience, we will give away a lot of data.
What do you think, would you like such an automated and seamless shopping experience? For details, please read the article below.
Cash registers are dumb. Why do we still have them?
Invented in 1879 to keep saloon employees from stealing, the cash register combines the functions of a calculator to add up the purchases and a lockbox to keep cash safe.
It assumes that retail employees have no verifiable way to add up numbers. And it assumes customers are paying in cash. Nowadays, most people have a smartphone and pay electronically. So the assumptions are gone. Yet cash registers remain.
The success of online retail demonstrates that you don’t need a Victorian-era contraption to sell things. You can do it all electronically.
But brick-and-mortar retail stores have a problem that online stores don’t: shoplifting. Without a cashier verifying the purchase and providing a paper receipt, it’s hard to stop some people from just taking stuff and walking out without paying.
The whole cash register model now represents a ritual that exists mainly as an anti-theft system.
That sounds like an easy problem to solve. Turns out…
Read the entire article from CIO.com here: Why smart stores don’t check out