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Amazon Go: Convenience Store of the Future?

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Primed for launch is Amazon’s new convenience store of the future—Amazon Go. This store has zero cashiers, zero lines and is a first of its kind. Scheduled to launch publicly in early 2017 in Seattle, the store is already open for Amazon employees to test out.

The “Just Walk Out” technology automatically detects what you take, what you put back (just make sure you put it in the same spot!) and keeps track of it from the virtual cart in the Go app. When you’re done shopping, simply walk out of the store and Amazon will charge your account while sending an electronic receipt. Many of the technologies in this store are those currently behind driverless cars, including computer vision, sensor fusion and deep learning per Amazon.

It’s part of a growing trend to automate c-stores and fast food restaurants in the United States to speed up lines at the cash register. It could have a significant impact given that cashiers account for roughly 3.5 million jobs in the United States, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

It’s an aggressive push by Amazon into a new sector and could be polarizing with everyday c-stores who will be watching carefully for the outcome. Amazon may follow up by building hundreds or even thousands more, says The Wall Street Journal, if this venture is successful.

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