WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF
We have had the technology to let customers walk in, grab what they want, pay, and leave without stopping at the checkout for a long time, but it’s now rolling out.
The first truly cashierless stores first emerged in 2016 and were pioneered by Grabandgo. Then Amazon came into the market with Amazon Go and suddenly everyone sat up and took notice and retailers around the world, from nano-retailers like AiFi to big box giants like Walmart, started trialling and deploying the technology. Now, in the UK supermarket giant Tesco has created what is set to be its first public facing store using cashierless technology as grocers compete to offer more convenience shopping to customers.
To date Tesco has been trialling items being automatically added to a digital shopping basket as customers pick them up from the shelves at its Welwyn Garden City store at the HQ used by staff.
Then in June Tesco boss Ken Murphy said the company would extend that trial to another store “in the coming weeks and months” with the result being that the chain has now refurbished its Tesco Express site in High Holborn with new pay gates and a host of cameras installed in the ceiling.
According to Retail Week magazine which reported on the store changes, the technology is not yet operational but “it is destined to be the first public facing Tesco store equipped with its Trigo powered version of Amazon’s Just Walk Out technology”.
The Retail Week report also added that Trigo uses machine vision powered tech, like Grabandgo’s whose technology is embedded into ceilings, facias, and along rails in the stores, that supports checkout free retail experiences.
The grocery sector is continuing to try out ways to offer people more convenience at lower prices and so far this year tech giant Amazon has opened a number of cashierless stores in London and the US where shoppers cans scan a smartphone app to enter, pick up goods, and walk away. Shortly after they get an E-Mail receipt and are be billed from their Amazon account.