Inside the Amazon Go Store: Is This The Future of Shopping?
There is a reason Amazon’s CEO, Jeff Bezos, is the current wealthiest man and his company is worth over $1 trillion. He thrives on innovation. Amazon Go is his latest innovation and it is going to completely change how we do shopping in the future.
London has opened its first store in Ealing Broadway on March 4th and marks the start of Amazon's assault onto the British high street with more stores planned to open. Staffless, shoplifting proof, cashless shopping, has arrived!
The project leverages several technologies including machine learning, computer vision, and sensor fusion to solve every customer’s nightmare. Dealing with an unending queue at the checkout. Shoppers walk into the Amazon Go stores, grab what they want and, just walk out.
Amazon first tested the concept with a cashier-less convenience store in 2018 and fast forward to 2020, they have diversified their portfolio with 26 more stores distributed in four cities including Seattle, New York, San Francisco, and Chicago.
Shoppers use their Amazon Go app to gain access to the store, and after that, everything they pick from the shop will be added to a virtual cart. If they change their minds about the item, all they need to do is put it back on the shelf and it will get removed from the cart.
The app adds up the purchases made after a customer leaves the store and then charges their Amazon account.
If that’s not the future, then I don’t know what is.
Innovations usually come at a cost
The biggest resistance to the launch of Amazon Go has been its implications on the job market. As more retail and service companies start automating cashier duties, it’s a matter of when not if, over 3.5 million people working in this sector will be affected.
However, Amazon has already shown us how this is not a bad thing.
Instead of laying off the employees after automating their jobs, Amazon assigned them new work in other areas like product and program management where machines would not be as effective.
So, instead of being stuck at the counter doing boring and repetitive tasks, the workers were now be involved in other meaningful roles like product development. And then when Amazon finally reaches a $2 trillion valuation you will hear people wondering how they did it.
By doing away with checkouts, Amazon has set a standard that will shape how existing and future brick and mortar retail shops operate.
Oh, and the next time someone argues against Amazon Go and similar services because of the potential unemployment they could cause, remind them that at some point there were attendants at gas stations.