SEATTLE – Amazon Go has now opened a “just walk out” grocery store in the city of Seattle, where the company was born.
Customers will be required to use the Amazon Go app and scan it to be granted permission to enter the store. Once inside, things in the shelves are registered with sensors and other technological devices to know what has been taken and what has been put back. When users are done, they leave the 1,800 square foot place and get charged on their Amazon accounts.
Amazon has informed the idea took four years to materialize. They also indicated that they were aiming to push the boundaries of computer vision and machine learning to create a store where customers could simply take what they want and go without the need of making lines. The store counts only with products around meals and overall food. Among the offerings are ready to eat meals, snacks, drinks, grocery essentials like bread, milk and food prepared by in-store employees.
Besides the obvious benefit of not having to get into a line or spend time checking out the items, Amazon will be able to provide their clients with suggestions based on what the cameras in stores see shoppers take, take a look at and leave. Along with the information given by the website browsing activities.
A market that is very well known
Last year, the veteran company inaugurated Amazon Books, a book store also in Seattle. Numerous sources also point towards Amazon’s interest into opening up pop-up stores all over the US, a kind of retail that has been recurring this year by several industries.
An even more related store to the Amazon Go is the Amazon Fresh, a grocery delivery service that has found an audience nationwide, after having started in Seattle. Nevertheless, this service has not been able yet to avoid the fact that delivering groceries is not an easy task. It demands fast delivery for cold items as part of large orders on less profitable routes which is logistically inconvenient.
A movement already on its course.
With the opening today, came several information leaks about other retail formats Amazon is going to explore. According to insiders the first would be a series of large, multifunction stores with curbside pickup capability. The second consists of drive-through prototype locations.
Experts are already deeming Amazon´s move as one to follow peers like Instacart and Selfycart or Kroger Co. which operates about 2,800 locations across 35 states, into a revolutionary substitution of lines and the human element on grocery stores. Also heating up the competition are mammoth supermarkets Walmart and Whole Foods.
“Part of their secret sauce regarding all of the different ways in which they can engage the customer in bringing the product to them,” said Bill Bishop, chief architect at grocery and retail consultancy Brick Meets Click to The Wall Street Journal.
All Amazon clients will be granted entrance to the stores at some point in 2017. As of now the store is currently open in beta to Amazon employees only.
Source: The New York Times