The internet retailer has opened a grocery store in which shoppers only have to scan their smartphone upon entry, with purchases automatically charged to a credit card when they leave the store.
The shop has a network of CCTV cameras and pressure sensors to detect when visitors have taken something off the shelves, at which point it is added to their virtual shopping basket. When they exit the store, their purchases are charged directly to the shopper’s online Amazon account, without the need to wait at the till.
The company said the “Amazon Go” stores had been in development for four years. It has opened the first outlet – an 1,800 square foot food store near its Seattle headquarters.
The shops use machine vision technology to identify what shoppers take certain items. When something is taken off a shelf, a pressure sensor is activated and cameras in the store identify which shopper has taken the product in question.