Getting a business to grow is not an easy task, it takes a lot of effort mixed with some innovative thinking. You might find hundreds of organizations doing what you’re trying to do but what is it that makes you stand out of the crowd?
It’s ‘OUT OF THE BOX’ thinking!
What is the process that your mind goes through when you think of going to the store to get some stuff for daily use? Going to the store, picking the things you need, waiting in the line to pay and meanwhile having to have small talks with the cashier! Most of you would like to avoid that won’t you? What if there was a store where you go in, take what you need, get out and pay for it while you’re walking back to your car? That would be amazing right? Well Amazon has come up with one of the most brilliant ideas that will change the way you shop! They recently released a video unveiling their new store ‘AMAZON GO’ and it’s name defines it perfectly. It’s a store where you can just walk in, get your stuff, get out and make the payment online!
How does it work though?
Amazon have not fully disclosed how the store works but from the FAQ given by them it’s clear that it works on the same type of technology used in self driving cars, roughly talking, computer vision, sensor fusion and deep learning. It does sound confusing and there are a lot of questions as to how will amazon prevent theft? and how will it track the customer? well that’s where the Artificial Intelligence and the sensors come in to play!
Different tech magazines and websites have different views and analogies about how the store works. The basic technique Amazon used is QR code. The customer is supposed to download the Amazon Go app which will generate a unique QR code for the user. The QR code must be scanned before entering and that’s how Amazon will know that you have entered the store and as soon as you leave the store the bill is sent to your Amazon account and you get an e-receipt. Now as Amazon says the store works on technology used in self driving cars, which means sensors are one of the most important part of the project. To see if an item is picked up or kept back on the shelf, to track the movement of their customers facial recognition and sensor play a huge role and coming on to thefts, that might be taken care of by cameras and security, since no system is perfect but if Amazon is capable of using AI to remove checkout counters then AI security might not be that far away.
What are the available products?
For now they offer ready to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner, the grocery essentials range from from staples like bread and milk to artisan cheeses and locally made chocolates. You can also find ‘Amazon meal kits’ for a quick home cocked dinner for two, and as you probably guessed by now they will keep increasing the products you can buy at the store. The store is spread out in a 1,800 square feet space making it convenient for the customers to get in and out fast which is roughly the main idea of the store.
Where can you find the store?
Amazon started working on this project about four years ago and finally they have opened their first store located at 2131 7th Ave, Seattle, WA, on the corner of 7th Avenue and Blanchard Street. This store is currently open for Amazon employees only for beta program. Amazon Go is expected to go public in early 2017, you can even go to their website to get a subscription and they will notify you as soon as the store opens.
Amazon Go is another example of what changes AI can bring about in any industry! the possibilities are endless. But will Amazon Go be successful? we will soon find out!