Inside Amazon Go, a Store of the Future

There is something unusual about Amazon’s store. It feels like you are entering a subway, not a grocery store, with its row of gates guard at the entrance of the store, allowing in only people with the store’s smartphone app.

The store is 1800- square foot mini market with shelves of products that you can find in every other store. Amazon also has his own chain with Whole Foods.

Amazon’s store enables a shopping experience like no other. There are no registers or cashiers anywhere. After customers finish with shopping, they leave the store through those same gates, without stopping and pulling their credit card to pay. For what they take out of the door, their Amazon account automatically gets charged. Only few minutes after customers walking out of the store, Amazon sends them an electronic receipt for purchases.

Inside the store there are shopping bags in which customers put items directly. After they are done with shopping, they’ll walk out with it. There is integrated system that automatically put an item that has been taken by a customer, into the shopping cart of their online account. Amazon removes the product from their virtual basket, if customers put the product back on the shelf. There are arrays of small cameras, hundreds of them throughout the store that control this process and makes all this possible. Without attaching a special chip to every product, Amazon’s technology can see and identify every item in the store.

The job of the cashiers may be in jeopardy if the technology behind Amazon Go eventually spreads. In 2016 there were little over 3.5 million cashiers in USA.

Because there are no cashiers, an employee sits in the alcohol section and checks I.D.s of customers, before they can take alcohol off the shelves.

An unanswered question is where Amazon plans to take the technology. Nobody says whether it plans to leave this as a one of a kind novelty or to open more Amazon Go stores. There’s even speculation about selling the system to other retailers