Fully automated stores are making inroads, largely in tandem with the increase in mobile payment. But customers still want to have the freedom to pay with whatever mechanism they prefer, be it cash, payment card or mobile. Hence, self-checkout kiosks have a major role to play in the emerging automated store.
New foodservice technologies — including self-order kiosks, mobile ordering and EMV-enabled payment systems — are being introduced at a rapid pace. Operators with existing POS investments need to be able to integrate new capabilities into their existing systems.
Restaurants that have deployed self-pour technologies have found the systems reliable and easy to use. The technology, which charges by the ounce, allows restaurants to capitalize on the popularity of craft beer.
The National Automatic Merchandising Association trade show floor featured POS equipment tailored to a consumer who is comfortable with mobile payment, and other technologies such as advanced data analytics, artificial intelligence, robotics, biometric identity verification and digital signage.
While encouraged by customer response, Amazon isn't ready to announce much about plans for its innovative cashierless store concept. The company is making sure the technology, which utilizes machine learning and computer vision to eliminate the need for cashiers, continues to function seamlessly.
Using artificial intelligence, the Vicki from ViaTouch Media lets shoppers take products from a shelf and examine them before making a purchase. The customer can also ask questions and get answers about products in the machine.
Amazon's supermarket, which boasts a cashier-less checkout, is open to the masses after a year in beta with Seattle-based company employees. Industry pundits, not surprisingly, have a lot to say about the public launch.