Amazon Go - Product Stars
Best products of September 2018

Amazon Go

Amazon stores with no lines or checkout 🛍

Upvotes 6,279 PH Page >
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.
Ari
@rrhoover try shoplifting and a drone will take you to jail :)
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.
Michael Tomko
@matthewtwhuang @bear_silber @rrhoover Super glad to hear that I'm not the only person who made any Oceans 13 references when talking about Amazon Go.
Emmanuel Lemor
@bear_silber - I just wanted to check out Selfycart's website - Can you please fix it so that it's not 100mg to have it come up before the site shows anything on it [36secs] ? even with a fast connection that's insane :/ [a full load is 164mg :/]
Emmanuel Lemor
@rrhoover But is that really progress that we need or want... personally, I will not want a store without people/employees in it. Part of why I go into stores is the human interaction [yes, even if sometimes it's not 'ideal' interaction]
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
@nikhiljoisr I disagree with that, bitty I'm curious your reasoning?
Nikhil Jois
@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. :)
Andy O'Dower
@chrismessina @nikhiljoisr VERY interested in the reasoning here as well. 100% disagree.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Derek Scruggs
@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.
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.
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.
Mat Sherman
Wow. This opens up the door down the line for everyone to have a similar model, but with use of Augmented Reality. All you have to do is go in with a Augmented Reality headset, look at want you want, do a little dance, and you've bought it. This is big. Forward looking but still, this is next level.
BrianBest
The future is cool.
Joshua Talley
0_0
Abhinaw Kumar
Wow! This is from future.
Anthony Da Mota
Wow, this is going to be awesome.
Janil Jean
Wow, my respect and admiration for this brand increase day by day. Making life easier for consumers like never before or by any other company.
Josh Odigie
An amazing blend between the recogniseable Amazon e-commerce platform and real-life shopping. This is sure to be very popular.
Nick Abouzeid
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?
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.
Noah Kim
@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?
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.
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.
Kyle Dumovic
@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?
SyCo4Sports
@bikebodenberger @nickabouzeid Somehow each product has to be identifiable. If someone picks something up and puts it down elsewhere it would still need to be recognized. My guess is of course RFID which is already usable and the cost is lowering. The Shelves could not be use to track product for the same reason.
Michael Flores
Those in traditional retail think disruption of their business by Amazon must be a world with no stores, and so they laugh. But it might look like this instead.
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.
Hamish Macpherson
@dnuzum Yeah... wonder how well this could work for a family shopping? Or even just a couple. Still very cool though!
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.
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
@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.
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 😱
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.
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!
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?
Derek Scruggs
@gavindonovan @chrismessina I bet the early versions are a hybrid. There's still a checkout scanner of some sort, but it pairs with your phone.
Yann Bertrand
So do they link your face + movements with your Amazon account? Pretty scaring, isn't it?
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
Derek Scruggs
@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.
Erwin James Will
About time. Surprised they don't have robots stocking the shelves and making the food.
Julian Lehr
Love it! 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, ..)
Mitch
@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
@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.
edouardwinia
@dnuzum @lehrjulian @sleumasm yes onboarding aspects are super important, for me there is a ton of friction to get into the store, you can't just walk in and pay cash. But I assume that people will be willing to do a heavier onboarding process for the benefit of not having to wait in line to pay.
Macrina Damian
nice! just can't help thinking about all the people that will remain jobless in the process... this is a big issue. @amcafee https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cXQrbxD9_Ng
timo dechau
@macrina_ True. We should start thinking about how society will shape by these innovations.
David Rogerson
@timdechau @macrina_ Have a look at this list and think about how many will be around in 10-20 years: http://www.ranker.com/list/most-common-jobs-in-america/american-jobs
Macrina Damian
@doivoid @timdechau exactly... wow, I didn't know about this ranking. thanks!
Chris Messina
@macrina_ funny though, since that video is a lot more optimistic about the shift away from human labor.
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.
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)
Jose Luis Pajares
This is a huge leap in retail experience. First because access is restricted, you can only buy if you are already an amazon customer. Second, it confirms the level of analytical certainty that artificial vision has achieved and its potential in all industries
Vineeth
Shopping with gf will be a mess ;'(

What is Amazon Go?

Amazon Go is a new kind of store with no checkout required. We created the world’s most advanced shopping technology so you never have to wait in line. With our Just Walk Out Shopping experience, simply use the Amazon Go app to enter the store, take the products you want, and go! No lines, no checkout. (No, seriously.)

How does Amazon Go work?

Our checkout-free shopping experience is made possible by the same types of technologies used in self-driving cars: computer vision, sensor fusion, and deep learning. Our Just Walk Out Technology automatically detects when products are taken from or returned to the shelves and keeps track of them in a virtual cart. When you’re done shopping, you can just leave the store. Shortly after, we’ll charge your Amazon account and send you a receipt.

How big is the store?

Our roughly 1,800 square feet of retail space is conveniently compact so busy customers can get in and out fast.

What do I need to get started?

All you need is an Amazon account, a supported smartphone, and the free Amazon Go app.

Why did you build Amazon Go?

Four years ago we asked ourselves: what if we could create a shopping experience with no lines and no checkout? 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 I can just shop normally?

Yes! Just browse and shop like you would at any other store. Then you’re on your way. No lines, no checkout.

What can I buy at Amazon Go?

We offer delicious ready-to-eat breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snack options made fresh every day by our on-site chefs and favorite local kitchens and bakeries. Our selection of grocery essentials ranges from staples like bread and milk to artisan cheeses and locally made chocolates. You’ll find well-known brands we love, plus special finds we’re excited to introduce to customers. For a quick home-cooked dinner, pick up one of our chef-designed Amazon Meal Kits, with all the ingredients you need to make a meal for two in about 30 minutes.

Where is Amazon Go located?

Our store is located at 2131 7th Ave, Seattle, WA, on the corner of 7th Avenue and Blanchard Street.

When can I visit Amazon Go?

Amazon Go is currently open to Amazon employees in our Beta program. Click below to get notified when we open.

Interested in joining the Amazon Go team?