What is Amazon Go? Imagine being able to walk into a grocery store, fill your basket with items, and simply walk out without waiting in line to check out. Well, that’s exactly what you can do at an Amazon Go store, thanks to their incredible technology. In this article, we’ll explore how Amazon Go stores work and why you should be interested.
OK, So What Exactly are “Amazon Go” Stores?
Amazon Go stores are a revolutionary “brick and mortar” grocery store concept that allows you to enter, pick up the items you need, and walk out without the traditional checkout process. You won’t find cashiers asking you about your day or any annoying lines. To get started, all you have to do is download the free Amazon Go app. Once inside the store, simply scan the app to track your purchases and have them billed to your Amazon account. After scanning, you can put your phone away and enjoy your shopping experience.
Where Are Amazon Go Stores Currently?
As of now, there are a total of 9 Amazon Go stores. The first store was launched in Seattle in 2016, and since then, they have expanded to Chicago (3 stores) and San Francisco (2 stores), with two more stores currently in development. You will find most Amazon Go stores located in busy financial districts where people are looking for a quick lunch or snack. Interestingly, many of these locations are closed on weekends.
What Products Do They Carry?
Think of Amazon Go stores as modern convenience stores, packed with staple items like dairy, bread, candy, drinks, snacks, coffee, and personal hygiene products. However, their most popular section consists of prepackaged foods for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. These delicious offerings are sourced from local restaurants and suppliers that shoppers recognize and know are tasty. And for those interested, yes, Amazon Go stores also carry alcoholic beverages. Just be prepared to show your ID to an employee before entering the booze section. If you want to know exactly what a specific Amazon Go store carries, you can easily check the Discover tab within the app.
What About Amazon Go Prices?
The prices at Amazon Go stores are actually quite reasonable. For example, you can indulge in a tasty wrap for $6.49, grab a bag of chips for $1.29, or quench your thirst with a bottle of water for just $0.99. Spending less than $10 for a quick lunch is definitely a good deal. While Amazon Go prices might not always be lower than those at big-box grocery stores, the convenience of saving time makes the proposition irresistible for many people on the go. As Amazon continues to open more “Go” stores, expect prices to drop as they refine their technology and find ways to pass on more savings to shoppers.
Do You Need to be a Prime Member?
Nope! Amazon Go stores are open to everyone, regardless of whether you have a Prime membership or not. All you need is an Amazon account and a smartphone to download the app.
How Accurate is the Technology?
The technology behind Amazon Go stores is impressively accurate. In fact, Amazon claims that if you manage to exit a store with an item you weren’t charged for, it’s their mistake, and you can keep it. The store utilizes an extensive network of cameras to track your every movement, including the items you pick up and take with you and even those you briefly consider before putting them back. While the prepackaged food items have specific Amazon Go barcodes, the other items don’t, making the tracking process even more remarkable. Although Amazon has been secretive about the inner workings of their stores, it is clear that they rely on computer vision and deep learning technologies to track customer behavior.
Why Should You Care About This?
The future of shopping lies in the concept of Amazon Go. Just look back at when Amazon acquired Whole Foods in 2017, shortly after the first Amazon Go store appeared in Seattle. It’s only a matter of time before this convenient, line-free technology makes its way to Whole Foods and other stores. Although it might not initially cover the entire store, it’s highly likely that we’ll see it implemented within the next few years. Amazon is at the forefront of the “brick and mortar” shopping revolution, with their cutting-edge technology leading the way.
Entering an Amazon Go store means accepting that your data will be collected from the moment you step inside. Amazon tracks your purchases, observes what you look at and for how long, and even monitors how you navigate the store. All of this information is used to improve their stores and technology, ultimately enhancing your overall shopping experience. While some may find this data collection a bit intrusive, it’s a necessary compromise for entering the Amazon Go realm. So, have you ever shopped at an Amazon Go store? Would you go back? We’d love to hear about your experience and the value proposition it offered you.