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Amazon Go: Amazon's automated grocery store is now open

23 January, 2018, 01:38 | Author: Samuel Sharp
  • Amazon’s automated grocery store set to open Monday

USA Today has high hopes for the concept, which differs from Amazon Books in having checkouts: "If it succeeds, it stands to live up to those early expectations of a revolution in grocery shopping".

It took about 15 minutes for the receipt to show up after I'd left the store, but it was accurate: coffee creamer for The Seattle Times' morning news crew and Pocky chocolate covered biscuits, which I used to have to go to Uwajimaya to get. After being tested by Amazon staff for over a year, the store is now deemed ready for public use.

An Amazon.com Inc. employee scans in to shop at the Amazon Go store in Seattle, Washington, U.S., on Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018.

Amazon has unveiled its view of the future of retail with the official opening of the company's next-generation store. And then when you leave the store, you just walk back through the turnstiles, and your Amazon account simply charges you for what you bought.

The store - the first of its kind - is somewhat of a novelty.


The store itself is not huge - only about 1,800 square feet in total, so it's likely that it's fire department regulations and not limits on the technology that's keeping people lined up outside. All shoppers need to do is download the Amazon Go application from the App Store or Play Store (depending on their device) and sign into their Amazon account before they depart, then scan the QR code at the storefront when they arrive.

Q: How does Amazon Go work? Amazon's investments and agreements mean that as well as Amazon Go! and Whole Foods, it also has a physical presence in Kohl stores and operates a number of Amazon Books, stores. And Amazon Go may well be the next step in this experience. Customers are automatically billed when they leave the store.

As the Times found when they tried it, shoplifting seems just about impossible here, because Amazon is watching with arrays of hundreds of small cameras above store shelves.

They would take photos when people enter the store, when they removed items from a shelf, and when they left with items in their hands.

Five years from now, will we look back and realize that Amazon Go was simply the first customer of Amazon's "Just Walk Out Technology"? "The system is very accurate", Kumar said. Most of the on-site human employees are tasked with checking IDs for alcohol purchases, helping troubleshoot potential problems, or preparing fresh foods in the adjacent kitchen.

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