No Lines and No Checkout with Amazon Go

Amazon put in the time and effort to eliminate any possible snags from its new cashier-less store before launching it in January. Customers can now enjoy a quick and efficient shopping experience with the use of a simple app.

By Timea Papp

Timea P.Amazon Go opened its doors to the public in Seattle last month, after a year of tests and overcoming glitches in Beta mode. Dubbed by many as “the store of the future,” Amazon Go has changed the face of quick and convenient shopping in more than one way.

Smooth shopping

The self-checkout shopping experience at Amazon’s new grocery store boasts the “Just Walk Out” technology—customers simply grab the product they need, pay for it through an app and then walk out. That sounds easy enough, right? As time-effective and effortless that may seem (and it actually is, according to customers who have already tried it), there are a few measures the shopper must take before enjoying the experience.

As a first step, the customer must download and install the Amazon Go app, log in with their Amazon account and choose a form of payment. The app will then provide a QR code which is scanned through the turnstiles that open to allow access inside. Amazon’s cameras and sensors track the shoppers’ movements around the store, so when a person picks a product, the store automatically places it into the costumer’s virtual shopping cart. In case the consumer has second thoughts and puts the item back or on a different shelf for that matter, the sensors pick up the changes and remove the product from the person’s shopping list. Amazon put in the time and effort to perfect this concept, making shoplifting exceedingly difficult or even literally impossible, according to preliminary reports.

Are you hiring? Yes!

As Amazon Go launched, one major issue seemed to spark discussion and that is—the number of jobs this type of store might cost. Yes, the lack of cashiers seems to indicate that if Amazon decides to implement this idea in Whole Foods stores the e-commerce giant purchased last year, many employees could become jobless. Amazon has addressed the matter by saying there are no plans in the near future to extend this new shopping concept to Whole Foods or any other area.

As for Amazon Go, there are a number of employees present in the store who manage the shelves, check IDs in case of liquor purchases and assist customers with anything they need. In addition, there are chefs preparing food in a kitchen that is visible from the street (food that is freshly sold in the store). So it’s only a matter of different tasks, not the lack of jobs.

The store is quite small, encompassing 1,800 square feet and providing the essential items one finds in a convenience store. And that’s exactly the point of Amazon Go: helping costumers do their shopping in a quick and efficient way, grabbing the wanted items and walking right out. The shopper is charged within a few minutes of leaving the shop and Amazon even tells the customer exactly how long they spent in the store, for future reference.

Even though the official launch of Amazon Go’s was delayed as Amazon struggled to eliminate snags, it’s safe to say the store has been a success so far and is appealing to tech-savvy consumers who like to wrap up their shopping as quickly as possible.