No, it's not a surprise bonus episode of Black Mirror, but it is, perhaps, the best thing to happen to introverts since the invention of Seamless. Amazon just announced the 2017 opening of Amazon Go, a store where you don't have to check out, wait in line, or literally talk to a single human soul. It's as simple as using the app to swipe into the Amazon Go location on your phone, putting the items you want in your bag, and heading out the door. Let the not making eye contact with any living thing from this moment henceforth BEGIN!!!
According to Amazon, the "Just Walk Out" technology that makes this model possible is the same tech used in self-driving cars. Once a customer pulls an item or places it back on a shelf, a virtual cart detects the movement, so you can just bag as you go without worrying about a cart. That's why you can just head right out the door when you're done — the app will charge it to your Amazon account later on, and boom! You can get back to your very pressing Friday night plans of Netflix-ing into oblivion and eating out of the ice cream you just purchased without interacting with a single being. Huzzah!!
The stores will include ready-made options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner as well as snacks, made in house and by local suppliers. It will also offer local options for foods like chocolates and artisanal cheeses that are provided locally as well.
"Four years ago we asked ourselves: what if we could create a shopping experience with no lines and no checkout?" Amazon shared in a press release on their website. "Could we push the boundaries of computer vision and machine learning to create a store where customers could simply take what they want and go? Our answer to those questions is Amazon Go and Just Walk Out Shopping."
So when exactly are these majestic stores opening? As of right now, Amazon plans to break ground with the first Amazon Go store in Seattle, which will open in beta for its employees as of early 2017. To keep an eye out on when a location will open near you, sign up for email notifications on Amazon; when it's go time, all you'll need is an Amazon account, the Amazon app, and a supported smart phone.
One small step for the lazy, and a giant leap (behind the soup shelf, where your old junior high crush can't see you) for introvert kind!