Amazon has declared war against traditional retail POS (point of sale) hardware and software, launching so-called Just Walk Out technology as a way for third-party retailers to improve customer shopping experiences.
In Just Walk Out-enabled stores, Amazon says:
- shoppers enter the store using a credit card.
- They don't need to download an app or create an Amazon account.
- Just Walk Out technology detects what products shoppers take from or return to the shelves and keeps track of them in a virtual cart.
- When done shopping, shoppers can just walk out and their credit card will be charged for the items in their virtual cart.
- If shoppers need a receipt, they can visit a kiosk in the store and enter their email address.
Amazon Just Walk Out: Deployments and Channel Partners?
Amazon says Just Walk Out technology can take a few weeks to deploy, though specific deployment times weren't disclosed. The e-commerce giant will offer 24/7 phone and email support to retailers that adopt the technology, but Amazon didn't mention if a channel partner or system integrator program is forthcoming. Also, it's unclear whether third-party MSPs can wrap managed services and monthly recurring revenues around the Just Walk Out technology.
Retailers that deploy Just Walk Out technology will still ned in-store employees to greet and answer shoppers' questions, stock the shelves, check IDs for the purchasing of certain goods, and more, Amazon says.
Dilip Kumar, Amazon's vice president of physical retail and technology, is driving the Just Walk Out initiative, Reuters reports.
Amazon Just Walk Out: Potential Data Privacy Concerns?
Just Walk Out appears to be disruptive technology that may delight customers. But it may also face privacy concerns -- especially from retailers that fear Amazon will gather and harness sales data from third-party retailers.
Amazon has vowed to avoid those privacy issues. The company says Just Walk Out technology will "only collect the data needed to provide shoppers with an accurate receipt."