How Will Fully Automated Retail Affect Vending Operators?

With Covid-19 making it necessary for consumers worldwide to have a contactless shopping experience, more retailers are exploring options.  One of the options being explored is global AI-powered checkout.  With AI-powered checkout, stores don’t need employees to help customers check out any longer.  Image recognition technology and cameras track customers from the moment they pick up items from the shelFully Automated Retail Vendingves to when they check out.   

Even though some analysts have said that businesses like supermarkets would return to normal after Covid-19, the virus has taught us that most consumers are adapting to the new normal” and are embracing AIpowered checkout. 

Recent data from
indicates the  global AIpowered checkout market was valued at $97.88 million in 2019 alone and is predicted to grow by 37.2% CAGR by 2027. 

Growth Of AI-Powered Technology Is Strongest In North America 

North America (US and Canada) has been one of the top regions in the world where AI-powered checkout has seen the strongest growth.  

Global AI-powered checkout is here to stay, especially since Covid-19 is expected to continue being a factor in day-to-day life for at least another year.  

The good news is that based on the AI-powered technology that was implemented in 2020, retailers can be confident their companies will continue to grow since technology is available to meet their needs and consumers’ demands in this changing marketplace. 

How Will Vending Operators Be Affected? 

Knowing that global AI-powered checkout is changing retail, the big question is how is the change going to affect vending operators? 

The answer is simple. With retail stores becoming more automated and easier to use, grocery stores, pharmacies and convenience stores will become more competitive, especially once Covid-19 ends. Stores will be able to stay open longer, offer larger inventories, and expand to more locations nationwide, giving consumers more options to get the products, foods, or beverages that they want. 

To stay competitive, vending operators must continue innovating and investing in AI for their vending machines to offer their customers next level vending experiences. 

Is Facial Recognition The Next Big Advancement For Vending? 

AIpowered vending machines are already on the market today in China, where consumers can purchase the products that they want via facial recognition and machine learning. 

Facial recognition has been used in some vending machines for years but with Covid-19 it is more likely contactless preferences will be seen as consumers will be eager to avoid contact with surfaces in order to avoid spreading viruses. 

Some of the leading companies in the AIpowered vending industry include DeepBlue Technology, Ltd Stockwell AI, Inc, and MintM. 

Besides investing in AI or facial recognition technology for their vending machines, to stay competitive, vending operators must also focus on making sure that they are choosing the right locations and placing the right products at those locations.  

Operators must also invest in AI software that’s connected to the cloud so that they can see actionable customer insights in realtime, helping the operator see which products are in demand (in realtime) at their vending machines. 

The good news is that there are also a wide variety of software companies specializing in vending management software including VagabondUSA TechnologiesNayax and other automated retail sources can be found in the
VendingConnection’s Suppliers Directory.

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