Amazon Sells ‘Just Walk Out’ Technology To Merchants

Amazon is introducing its “Go” concept to other merchants interested in its “Just Walk Out” technology, Reuters reported on Monday (March 9).

The eCommerce giant is in talks with other retailers and has “several” signed deals with unnamed customers. The new business division aligns with Amazon’s scheme of turning internal capabilities into business-to-business (B2B) services.

Amazon Go’s cashierless technology could grow into a $50 billion business, U.S. venture firm Loup Ventures told Reuters.

That arm of the business will expand based on consumer demand, said Dilip Kumar, vice president of physical retail and technology at Amazon. 

“Do customers like standing in lines?” he asked. “This has pretty broad applicability across store sizes, across industries, because it fundamentally tackles a problem of how do you get convenience in physical locations, especially when people are hard-pressed for time.”

Amazon’s “Just Walk Out” technology varies from Go stores in that shoppers will use credit cards to enter the retailer instead of an app. The turnstiles to get into the store will display the logo “Just Walk Out technology by Amazon,” but individual retailers will control all other branding.

All items a customer adds to their virtual cart will be billed to the credit card on file with Amazon without a need for bar code scans or checkout lines. Amazon Web Services (AWS) powers its cashierless systems, and demand for that service is expected to increase.

Amazon will also install the technology — including ceiling cameras and shelf weight sensors — and offer a 24-7 support line, Kumar said.

Amazon is in talks to bring the concept to airport stores, and Kumar said Amazon “potentially” could sell the service to big box competitors.

He declined to comment on the service’s business model or pricing, saying, “a lot of those are bespoke deals.”

Kumar would not discuss whether or how Amazon would integrate this into retailers’ loyalty programs but said, “These are the retailers’ customers.”

“We prohibit the use of Just Walk Out technology data for anything other than supporting Just Walk Out retailers,” he said.

Amazon wants to bring its cashierless Go technology to other places, like airport stores and movie theaters, in a bid to expand its reach and potentially win more cloud customers.