Amazon has unveiled plans to launch a shop that will allow you to buy goods from a store without having to interact with a cashier or self-service checkout, instead simply walking out and having your card billed as you do so.
Amazon Go arrives in the form of an 1800-square-foot retail space located in the company's hometown of Seattle and is described by the firm as a "new kind of store".
Instead of making small talk with cashiers or using a self-service checkout Amazon Go lets you waltz in, scan your phone, pick up a sandwich (or whatever you're after), and walk straight out.
"Our checkout-free shopping experience is made possible by the same types of technologies used in self-driving cars: computer vision, sensor fusion, and deep learning," Amazon explains.
"Our Just Walk Out technology automatically detects when products are taken from or returned to the shelves and keeps track of them in a virtual cart. When you’re done shopping, you can just leave the store. Shortly after, we’ll charge your Amazon account and send you a receipt."
If you're fine with Amazon tracking you in real life as it does online, it will have plenty to offer on its shelves, which presumably will be stocked by robots.
"We offer delicious ready-to-eat breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snack options made fresh every day by our on-site chefs and favourite local kitchens and bakeries. Our selection of grocery essentials ranges from staples like bread and milk to artisan cheeses and locally made chocolates," the firm said.
A public opening of Amazon Go is scheduled for 2017, although it's unlikely that it'll be coming to the UK anytime soon.
Nevertheless, the technology could one day cause the end of the cashier job, a means of employment to millions that, like truck drivers under threat from self-driving vehicles, could become redundant in the mid-to-long term future.
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