Amazon’s first convenience store, Amazon Go, has officially opened to the public. Located on the ground floor of Amazon’s Seattle headquarters, the grab-and-go concept features zero cashiers and no waiting in lines to pay. Rather, shoppers download an Amazon Go app on their smartphones and scan it against a turnstile at the store’s entrance.
The store then logs the items they’ve left with through various cameras and sensors and charges the customer’s Amazon account for the items. The fully convenient concept has been in development for five years and is based on Amazon’s desire to streamline shoppers’ experience. “What can we do to improve on convenience?” Amazon Go technology chief Dilip Kumar told Recode, “What we always came back to was people don’t like waiting in line.”
Amazon Go is laid out similarly to a Pret a Manger shop or a higher-end 7-Eleven store. The cashier-less and line-less store is stocked with salads, sandwiches, beverages, ready-to-eat meals, beer, wine, produce, meat, and Amazon meal kits. It also features a section of snacks from the 365 Everyday Value brand, the house label of Whole Foods (which was acquired by Amazon in 2017).
Kumar told the publication that although they have future plans to open more Amazon Go locations, the brand will be focusing on just the one for now. Should they see major success with the concept, we have a feeling it will be one the biggest food stories of the new year.