Amazon went where no other e-commerce company has gone. They announced the beta launch of the most liberating shopping experience: Amazon Go. It promises to let customers buy without staying in line and paying at the register #machinemagic
Boldly promoted as the “world’s most advanced shopping technology”, Amazon Go starts with an app and ends offline, in a store. By using machine learning, computer vision and AI, they came up with a new way to do your grocery shopping. Customers simply have to open a Go app when they enter the store and start putting things in their baskets. Products are shown as taken by those users and put on an online tab. When they leave the store, the virtual basket empties and the products are charged from their Amazon account.
When can you take advantage of it? Probably at the beginning of 2017. For now, only Amazon employees can test it at a 1,800 square foot location in Seattle. The store has put ready-to-eat meals and snacks on shelves for the moment, made by humans on site. They will be the only people in the store besides customers, as Amazon Go eliminates the need for cashiers.
This isn’t Amazon’s first foray into retail. The company opened an Amazon Books shop last year and plans to install pop-up shops across the U.S. If commodity and speed is what most customers want from a shopping experience, then Amazon might struck gold.