介绍：Amazon stores with no lines or checkout
Moritz Kobrna: Haha no way … two days ago on the way home from shopping, I said to my girlfriend that our children will just walk out of the store and pay as they leave. I also gave a detailed explanation of how the technique could look like – its exactly what you see in the video 😱
Posit: Queues at the entrance because people can't handle QR codes (see plane boarding cards).
Isn't there an easier way to solve this? (Beacons, WiFi, ..)
Dave Martin: Game changer
Joshua Talley: 0_0
Ryan Hoover: Amazon closing out 2016 with a ton of announcements. Super interesting to see them expand to brick and mortar, a huge growth opportunity, and do it in a unique, tech-centric way.
Abhinaw Kumar: Wow! This is from future.
Vineeth: Shopping with gf will be a mess ;'(
James Requa: Definitely the future of retail.
Maria Vataman: This looks amazing
An existing concept gone larger scale. I recall when Apple added shopping like this. You sign into your Apple Store app, pick the items you want, scan them, use the credit card you had on file, then walk out of the store with your items. Felt weird, but if you knew what you wanted, it was pretty quick and effortless.
The key questions I am looking to hear once this leaves beta (Amazon employee only) is how they deal with non-Amazon customers that walk through the door. How they deal with the savvy shoplifters. Inventory tracking and if it's different than other grocers handle it now (assuming that Amazon already has this one figured out, using their own internal systems)
The bigger question is how long will other retailers watch this once it rolls out to the public before putting their foot into the cashier less game. Most have had a head start with the self checkout lanes, although they are still mostly cashier managed, just on a 1:6 scale.
Juan L: No Phone, no Food? or can I login before accessing?
Nikhil Jois: This is going to be more impactful than self-driving cars. I wonder when India will be ready for Amazon Go though.
Chris Messina: Apple has been doing a variation of this (self checkout on your own phone) for a couple years now, but this takes it to a whole different level!
Yann Bertrand: So do they link your face + movements with your Amazon account? Pretty scaring, isn't it?
BrianBest: The future is cool.
Amazon invading brick and mortar! How would traditional retailers like Macy and Nordstrom respond if this Amazon Go project is a huge success and quickly expand nationwide?
I think the speed of change will even faster than publication industry.
Can someone speak to the technical aspects of how this store works? I don't quite understand how "machine learning" would be used to figure out exactly which bottle of soda I grab.
Are there cameras all over the store and/or are they tracking my phone through the store?
Adam Churcher: Woah. Impressive. I'm really interested into just how the store actually works and how the detection is put in place. What if you take a sandwich and somebody else puts the same one back straight after? Is it tracked by face/person? Either way, pretty incredible.
jason: amazon go takes the friction out of deciding if you have the money to pay for something... just take it, worry later!
nice! just can't help thinking about all the people that will remain jobless in the process... this is a big issue. @amcafee
✎ Andrew Warner: I'd love for the app to tell me where things are in the store. That's my #1 frustration in stores. I hate asking people where stuff is, and they seem to hate being asked.
shravan kumar: The experience would be like magic. However, for a mom to bring her kid for the shopping, does the kid needs to have a phone with Amazon account too?
An ability to buy items without scanning is good, no doubt. If you know the product, you just take it and leave. What if the item is unfamiliar to me? If you come across the product you never bought before? As for me, it would be beneficial to scan this unknown product with a mobile device and instantaneously view product reviews, ratings or even get recipes.
I wonder whether Amazon will be working on this functionality?
Tommy Norton: Next stop of Amazon: breaking the drive through industry
Joanna Strom: How about a Mom with kids? What about Security? There's an advantage of stores (using security cameras 2ND floor) of standing in line to checkout: all the people are in checkout. Less traffic at doors going OUT. This is a security nightmare. If you think no one steals Pampers or food... How will this stop this?
james reed: @andrewwarner true
Nikhil Jois: @derekscruggs @chrismessina I live in a country where 180 Million people make live in households that make less than 2 dollars a day. Self-driving cars are going to be amazing for fortunate folks like you guys and me who can think about things like commuting. Groceries are something everyone buys. The economy here is improving and more people are getting out of poverty. Our mobile penetration rates are second only to China. We have 1 Billion mobile phone users here. We have a total of about 70 Million motor vehicles. The most powerful tool we have is the internet on our mobile phones. If and when stores like these become commonplace, the impact it will have on the entire population is unimaginable. Self-driving cars are not going to affect millions for a very long time. Urban, rich populations are still a minority and cannot be the first subset we think of when we speak of impact.
Ari: @rrhoover try shoplifting and a drone will take you to jail :)
@nickabouzeid I feel like they're embellishing the 'computer vision' aspect of this. I wouldn't be surprised if all they're doing is scanning RFID tags on all your items with the turnstile looking things at the store's entrance when you walk out.
That said, such a system wouldn't allow you to peruse your cart or view your subtotal while still shopping -- so perhaps that's not how they're doing it and they are in fact using cameras and facial recognition -- but doesn't that seem over-the-top for something that RFID scanners (or equivalent tech) should be able to do easily?
Macrina Damian: @chrismessina please watch it again carefully, he is optimistic about technology and innovation (and I am too, amazing times) but the rapidly shift away from human labor (especially middle class, Bill) it is a problem to witch we have to find a solution fast (watch it from 5:30, as a solution he proposes guaranteed minimum income @ 9:57)
Nikhil Jois: @gopietz @odower I live in a country where 180 Million people make live in households that make less than 2 dollars a day. Self-driving cars are going to be amazing for fortunate folks like you guys and me who can think about things like commuting. Groceries are something everyone buys. The economy here is improving and more people are getting out of poverty. Our mobile penetration rates are second only to China. We have 1 Billion mobile phone users here. We have a total of about 70 Million motor vehicles. The most powerful tool we have is the internet on our mobile phones. If and when stores like these become commonplace, the impact it will have on the entire population is unimaginable. Self-driving cars are not going to affect millions for a very long time. Urban, rich populations are still a minority and cannot be the first subset we think of when we speak of impact.
Marty Mankins: @macrina_ @amcafee With the general knowledge that manufacturing jobs were lost due to technology advances, I'm curious to see where this is going to go in the next 3-5 years and how other retail establishments will expand to answer Amazon's call.
Nikhil Jois: @odower The number of people who buy groceries is much larger than the number of people who commute using cars. Also, the sheer scalability of using similar technology like this in other stores will impact several lives. Although, I was hasty in not mentioning a time frame I think. Self-driving cars may turn out to be more impactful given enough time but in the immediate future, I'd give Amazon Go the upper hand.
Chris Messina: @macrina_ funny though, since that video is a lot more optimistic about the shift away from human labor.
@chrismessina The number of people who buy groceries is much larger than the number of people who commute using cars. Also, the sheer scalability of using similar technology like this in other stores will impact several lives. Although, I was hasty in not mentioning a time frame I think. Self-driving cars may turn out to be more impactful given enough time but in the immediate future, I'd give Amazon Go the upper hand.
P.S: Huge fan of your work at Uber. I'm a beta user and love the way your team works. :)
Derek: @swetzequity @_yannbertrand Remember that prices will be lower too, and there will probably be membership bonuses for Prime members. Receipts will be emailed and/or stored in the app. People who care about privacy won't use it, but that's a small percentage. Everyone else is happy to have a Facebook account.
Derek: @nikhiljoisr @chrismessina It's not just about groceries and not just about Amazon. In 10 years every retailer and mall will have licensed this technology, just like many of them use Amazon for online fulfillment. A few high end brands like Nordstrom will continue to offer personalized service, but I've believed for a while that Amazon is setting itself to become the infrastructure of all retail commerce.
Gavin Donovan: @chrismessina what I can’t tell is…. Do you use the Amazon Go app to scan each item and then leave (aka you are the check out) or do you just grab and item and leave and it does everything for you automatically?
Bear Silber: @rrhoover I love this product. It's exactly what we're working on at Selfycart but implementing it into existing stores. This will be the future of retail.
Matthew TW Huang:
@bear_silber @rrhoover While the self-check-out is awesome and probably the future of retail check-out. I think the main benefits of Amazon Go is much more.
With the ability to just take and buy an item, without scanning ever, the friction of buying is greatly reduced (similar to one-click purchases). This will definitely increase what people buy, particularly families.
Personally, I think the greatest advancement for Amazon Go will be tracking of the stores. Amazon could collect every moment of the store (like the casino in Oceans 13). They can get the reactions of customers for every product. They can see where the consumers eyes are going. Amazon could change the lighting to highlight/feature items for every individual.
With Amazon's Kiva systems, they could even customize the shelves for particular times of the day without any effort from employees.
Retail stores will have to "Grow or die" -Phil Knight
I'm excited to see where retail stores will go.
Pietz Prove: @nikhiljoisr @odower i completely agree that more people go grocery shopping than drive cars. still, id argue that the step from regular cars to self driving cars brings a much higher magnitude of benefits than regular shopping vs no-checkout-shopping.
Michael: @nickabouzeid From looking at the video and website, it seems like they're using a combination of cameras and sensors to understand who you are and which product you're selecting, respectively. They don't mention bluetooth or other wireless tracking tech for the user, so my understanding is that cameras "watch" you as you navigate around the store. Simultaneously, computer vision places you at precise points in the store. The "sensor fusion" is probably integrated into each shelf, which identifies the product you select. The name suggests that it might not be a single type of sensor, but perhaps a series of sensors. I'd like to think they could be motion and RFID sensors like those used by shipping/logistics companies (which is essentially Amazon's core business). Machine learning ties it all together (where you are, what products you've selected, and what account to charge). These are all just assumptions based on the website and video. Would love to hear what other folks think.
Nick Hallam: @nikhiljoisr I not actually sure that there are more people who shop for groceries than commute by car? But either way the impact is the important part. I think it's difficult to argue that a service that saves me a few mins per day at the grocery store will have a bigger impact on people than a service that will reduce the number of care on the road, reduce road fatalities and improve mental health by letting people rest and study etc. while driving! Love what Amazon have done here, don't agree it will have more impact than self driving cars.
Karthik Sekar: @james_osullivan I am not able to quantify that but if you think about this the only staff reduction will be checkout people there will still be people in warehouses to stock inventory etc. They may not rely just on cameras it could be combination of sensors like rfid etc from what i know some small rfid sensors costs like 50c Ease of use = more sales I think this will be a huge revenue driver for Amazon
Andy O'Dower: @nhallam @nikhiljoisr yep with self-checkout this new service will save stores that already have it (and most large chains do) 50-75% of resources. But in the US alone (take India, China and 100x that number) millions of hours of productivity are lost to sitting in traffic (every day!) + deaths + services and businesses that support drivers.
Tony Brix: @askdaylen almost all technologies have had an initial slow adoption period. (the first touch screen cell phone came out in the early '90s.) But I think this is a much better alternative to Apple/Android/etc. pay
Daylen: @shra1cumar Good point :)
Daylen: @tonybrix Some stores have tried it and discontinued it due to low adoption, it being too easy to shoplift, and problems with produce items that have to be weighed. It works well at Sam's Club due to the size of the items (harder to steal).
Ethan Kravitz: @bikebodenberger @wuss @nickabouzeid They are absolutely using bluetooth, as well as wifi, and other RFID-based technologies. They just called it "Sensor Fusion" to keep it simple or maybe it sounds better with their focus groups. They are going to use as much data as possible to match your location in the store with the sensor of the the item that was removed from the shelf (just like the mini-bar in a hotel). So this is your phone's location combined with computer vision to recognize your face and body. The machine learning is just to get smarter about handling different behaviors and corner cases as they get more training data.
@mike_flores23 It's not just you guys. Many companies were for a long time! To be honest, general goods like apparel, home, etc. will take some time. If you look at the sort of selection on Prime Now and Fresh, you're going to see the sort of goods that will be in Amazon's wheelhouse. The 12-24 hour demand for "need this right now" just isn't there for a sweater or a dining set, but someone needs a small round of groceries for dinner and they want the newest movie or to try out or gift a Kindle or an Echo, that's pretty easy. Especially with the Prime Now and Amazon Fresh distribution centers in the area.
These new brick-and-mortar (I don't think they can truly be classified as traditional retail, but that will change in the next few years as retail aligns to the order and pickup demand) locations aren't very big. My guess is Amazon will be heavily relying on their existing local distribution network to get the bulk of the orders and goods to locations while these locations hold some staple goods they know they need and finish up packing/preparation for pickup.
I'd be really interested to see the selection available at the Go format. I'd guess a lot more simple prep/ready-to-eat goods along with produce, meat, and fresh goods with a split space for storeroom. This first location is literally across the street from Amazon's new campus (which is why it's only open to Amazonians right now) so it's definitely curtailed to younger, smaller "families" that live in areas pretty short on traditional grocery formats. All around, it's brilliant for all involved. Amazon gets their feet wet in the traditional space and have the prime (ha) consumer market for such a concept.
The first unannounced order-and-pickup appears to be mostly "backroom" to hold goods and orders with a small lobby to sell a small assortment of goods and complete pickups with maybe 10-20 parking spots along along a very busy thoroughfare that connects Downtown with Ballard (one of the busiest commutes in the area, but Amazon's bread-and-butter customer base).
The next year or two is going to be make or break for both Amazon and traditional retailers. The current Demand Generation is going to determine what goods they want and how they want to receive those goods. I can't say much, but I can tell you that multiple traditional retailers are exploring similar concepts to Amazon not only for selling goods, but for ordering and replenishment as well. NFC, AI, ZigBee IoT, etc. It's all pretty amazing.
timo dechau: @macrina_ True. We should start thinking about how society will shape by these innovations.
James O'Sullivan: @karthiksekarnz Yeah there are a lot of variables. Perhaps a staff increase? Cashiers might be gone but there might be added people for oversight, and those people might need to be trained/technically qualified. It would be interesting if Amazon showcased the net differences.
@bikebodenberger @nickabouzeid That's my assumption as well, but since it uses cameras, how would it handle a really busy store with a bunch of people all exactly 5' 10" tall? I'm assuming it could potentially fall back to it's other inputs, but the complexity of doing what it's doing would seem like it needs every piece of the triangulation to make an accurate charge.
Maybe the cameras are embedded in the shelves themselves (vs maybe in the ceilings) and it uses some sort of pattern/face recognition to identify you. There has to be some fringe cases where it could break though. Ex. when you're sitting there thinking about what to get, and you're in someone's way so they kind of duck underneath you and reach in front of you to get what they need. Or what if you get cold while you're shopping, and put a jacket and hat on?
My gut says this could be hacked by people pretty easily and they seem to be trusting the tech a lot, but then again, we have cars driving around by themselves, so maybe it all works?
Zach Swetz: @_yannbertrand yeah, I don't think people realize how hesitant folks outside of SF might be to something like this ... especially when the alternative is the "normal" grocery store with self checkout, etc... there's a reason stores have to give customers receipts, because they don't inherently trust them to charge them accurately
Michael: @wuss @nickabouzeid Maybe I'm way off, but I'm thinkin' the cameras use facial recognition as an identifier. If they aren't using something like bluetooth, then there needs to be a unique identifier to tie you to your app. The baseline photos could be uploaded during app onboarding or maybe there's even a facial scan feature. And the more you use the store, the more data (images of you) Amazon feeds back into their neural net. Which is where the machine learning comes in. The store is learning more about you each time you use it, painting a clearer picture of you and your buying behavior.
Derek Nuzum: @lehrjulian It's the best solution available right now for low entry barrier. I'm sure they'd rather use NFC, but with Apple having it locked down, they'd be missing a gigantic marketshare to not implement something that can be used by everyone.
@lehrjulian I feel like something similar to Android/Apple pay would work well. NFC is faster and you don't have to perfectly line up a barcode with a scanner.
Edit: Although a barcode would be compatible with all phones, but also less secure.
Derek Nuzum: @mike_flores23 I used to be in retail management in Amazon's backyard. Believe me, they're all scared of Amazon and have been for years. Kroger is fast tracking their order online and pickup at store service ASAP to beat the Amazon same service just a few blocks away. It's going to be very interesting.
Michael Flores: @dnuzum I work at Macy's Systems & Technology. We're generally in a state of denial about Amazon :D. I see this grocery store as, in part, a beta for other Amazon stores (*cough* apparel). Interesting times in this space.
Derek Nuzum: @hamstu I know this concept will be huge for the area it is in. Their upcoming order and pickup concept is in a high commute area that will grab tons of business, but I'm more interested in the quality and availability. I regularly see Amazon Fresh trucks shopping at competitor grocery stores. Those competitors know what their customers want for freshness and when and how much they want of it. Will be very exciting to watch.
Hamish Macpherson: @dnuzum Yeah... wonder how well this could work for a family shopping? Or even just a couple. Still very cool though!
Chris Messina: @nikhiljoisr I disagree with that, bitty I'm curious your reasoning?
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