Amazon's Dash Cart Skips the Checkout Line

Alonzo Simpson
July 14, 2020

In its bid to further automate grocery shopping, Amazon today unveiled a smart shopping cart that can automatically detect products placed inside it and let customers pay for shopping without visiting a cashier.

"We built this predominantly as an alternative to things like express checkout, where you still end up waiting in line, or fumbling with self-checkout machines", said Dilip Kumar, Amazon's vice president of physical retail and technology, in an interview this week.

Called Amazon Dash Cart, the e-commerce firm said: "It's a new smart shopping cart that makes a quick grocery trip even quicker by allowing you to skip the checkout line". Once done, shoppers exit through one of the store's Dash Cart lanes and the receipt will automatically be emailed to the address on file. Shoppers would visit utilizing a QR code in Amazon's app before putting their bags in the cart.

Amazon has announced that it's adding a smart shopping cart service to its upcoming Woodland Hills store in Los Angeles, California.

To use the Dash Carts, shoppers will need to have an Amazon account and a smartphone. "You can shop our entire grocery selection using the cart", the company outlines. "Plus, the weighing component of it also has to be very robust to be able to allow for a very accurate receipt experience for a customer".

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Amazon has reportedly been considering combining the aspects of traditional in-store shopping with online pickup for its grocery stores, according to a New York Times report from a year ago citing an internal memo from 2017. Amazon has approximately 25 such stores with no cashiers.

The global market for smart shopping carts is projected to grow to more than $3 billion by 2025, from $737 million previous year, according to a report by ResearchandMarkets.com.

This innovation eliminates the need of a cashier as the shopping cart is capable of charging the customers. Amazon Go stores make use of similar tech that automatically recognize what a user picks and places in their cart.

Additional features of the cart include a screen at the top where a shopper can access an Alexa Shopping List to check items off and view the subtotal, and a coupon scanner to which store coupons can be applied during the shopping trip.

Amazon also aims to bring other retailers to its level by selling them technology. As the buyer adds or removes the goods, on the display mounted on the front panel of the basket, the cost is adjusted.

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