The Water Cooler – The New ‘Amazon Go’ Store – Walk In, Grab and Item and Walk Out

January 22, 2018 12:00 pm · 52 comments

The “Water Cooler” is a feature on where we ask you a question or provide a topic, and you talk about it.

The “Water Cooler” will be up Monday-Friday in the noon hour.

Amazon opened their first ‘Go’ store in Seattle this week. According to the BBC, the store has no checkout operators or self-service tills. It uses hundreds of ceiling-mounted cameras and electronic sensors to identify each customer and track the items they select. Purchases are billed to customers’ credit cards when they leave the store.

The video below from C-NET has more information on the new store:

QUESTION: Will you shop at an Amazon Go store when they open in the Bay Area, and do you think this new type of store will force other companies (Safeway, Lucky, Costco, Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, etc.) to change the way they do business, possibly resulting in employee layoffs?

Talk about it….

Consumer D January 22, 2018 at 12:13 PM

This will be the way of the future. Stores will love this method because it benefits there business in countless ways. There will be one or two human checkers ( possibly). Have you been inside a Bank lately, There are hardly any Tellers (sometimes two). This is to encourage customers to bank online. Welcome to the FUTURE

elviss January 22, 2018 at 12:25 PM

The last time I visited my bank, there were no spaces available in the parking lot, and the line was practically out the door. But, it’s a really neat bank.

Concordejet January 22, 2018 at 12:16 PM

just useless

TIFOKCIS January 22, 2018 at 1:03 PM

Twice now we’ve agree on something. Weird!

Aspirin January 23, 2018 at 8:20 AM

Tech is a scary thing to some, especially older folks.

To a 10 year old, this is the future.

Dawg January 22, 2018 at 12:19 PM

No, I will not shop at any store that wants to store my credit information, I always pay cash. I don’t care how safe they claim it is, there will always be a cyber crook who will outsmart them and hack into their system.
I have been, and always will be a cynic.

ummmm January 22, 2018 at 12:39 PM

I’m with you! I don’t do on-line banking or bill paying, as I’ve had several friends who had their accounts hacked. Do NOT want to deal with all that mess!!!

Kirkwood January 22, 2018 at 12:37 PM

Reminds me of Japan’s rural grocery stores that have been around for a century. They are unmanned, and the local farmers go in, take what they need and write what they took in a ledger. The proprietor periodically totals up and collects from the “customers”. The system relies upon the innate honesty of the Japanese people.

Shoulda Coulda January 22, 2018 at 1:25 PM

There use to be something here in the 1970’s
similar to what you mention about shopping
in rural Japan. It was called Honor Snack of
America. You took what you wanted from their
display shelf and left the money in a box.
They didn’t last for long. Sadly there’s not as
much honor here in our country anymore.

Rob January 22, 2018 at 12:43 PM

I am ready to go!

I almost always use the self-checkout option and if I could shop and not even spend time having to ring stuff open – count me in!

Of course, the downside is that more Americans will be out of work as stores eventually take on this model to save money and shed humans…

Sick of it January 22, 2018 at 12:43 PM

This will just meen less jobs for people to work at that will eventually impact there buisness when people can barely afford to live. Much less shop at there store that will employ only computers at some point

Original G January 22, 2018 at 12:49 PM

At Home Depot as they introducied self checkout years back they stationed an employee to intercept customers and suggest use of self checkout.

Told the employee after her suggestion I didn’t believe in putting people out of work. She quickly looked around an very quietly thanked me.

Don’t care if I have to walk the length of the store to be checked out by a human then walk back to get to my car.

Amazon can go pound salt.

Will not knowingly participate in putting people out of work.

Jojo Potato January 22, 2018 at 12:51 PM

Will they send me a bill for servicing my wife? Amazon is total evil. Just ask your always listening echo.

anon January 22, 2018 at 1:40 PM

hence why we’ve returned TWO!!! what’s the point of it anyway?

Jojo Potato January 22, 2018 at 2:29 PM


TIFOKCIS January 22, 2018 at 1:05 PM

Inner City Youth have been doing this for years.

Chicken Little January 22, 2018 at 1:14 PM

But now, they won’t even look suspicious when they grab something off the shelf and walk out without paying.

TIFOKCIS January 22, 2018 at 1:26 PM

…………..their new defense in court “I thought I was shoplifting at Amazon”.

Aspirin January 23, 2018 at 8:21 AM

What about the Outer City Youth?

Crime free ?

AnonZ January 22, 2018 at 1:06 PM

Most stores don’t have enough security to stop people from running out of the store with beer, diapers, etc. How are they going to manage that at Amazon? I almost always use self check out at the grocery store (even with a full cart) because I can scan/pack faster than any of those cashiers; but I hope this is not the way of the future.

Consider This January 23, 2018 at 12:50 PM

Wow, I would be pulling my hair out if I was behind you in the self checkout line.

The self checkout should have an item limit, but sadly they never seem to.

chuckie the troll January 22, 2018 at 1:09 PM

I certainly hope that no one walks in wearing a Chuckie the Troll mask! How would you dispute charges for items you never grabbed? Call my old fashioned but this is a little too creepy for me.

Suzanne January 22, 2018 at 1:18 PM

Yes, we’re on the fast track to evolving tiny little jello-brains. No thinking going on here! Maybe Planet of the Apes was on to something. Chimps surpassing humans as the intelligent species.

hill January 22, 2018 at 1:48 PM

why do you say that ?

Suzanne January 22, 2018 at 2:45 PM

People need to stop letting their apps do their thinking for them.

hill January 22, 2018 at 1:45 PM

I cant see this working well but Amazon is good at this stuff. Not sure how they are going to keep people from running out, even if you have to have an account to get in people will find away around it. I also not sure I would feel safe.

Original G January 22, 2018 at 1:57 PM

Consider how they accomplish it. Tracking your phone plus video mentions video cameras. Which means they must track you and are probably using facial recognition technology.

Added new high definition (HD) cameras to one of our production facilities in past few months and picture is amazing. Zoomed in can count hairs on a person’s arm.

Wonder what are they going to do with the information they gather on shoppers? Will they retain facial recognition images of customers then sell both those images and what you buy to information brokers?

The Mamba January 22, 2018 at 2:20 PM

I wouldn’t shop there, and I wouldn’t appreciate it if the places I shopped replaced the employees with machines. We’re all in this together.

WhatThe? January 22, 2018 at 2:47 PM

Would go there today if I could. Worst part of grocery shopping is waiting to check out. Plus I would assume you could see a running total as you go so it can help you maintain a budget as well.

Automation is coming, soon cars and trucks will be driving themselves. There are 3.5 million truck drivers in the US and they’ll almost all be out of a job. There’s also 3.4 million cashiers in the US and technology like this will also cost them their jobs. Its coming people, you can’t stop it so you better figure out what we should do as these workers will be displaced. Saying you won’t shop at such a store won’t work as you won’t have any choice. Just like if you said you will only buy gas from a station that pumps it for you, its just not possible.

JazzMan January 22, 2018 at 2:53 PM

I would use them. More convenient. As for lay-offs, I don’t think so. Remember, 45, Randall Stevenson (AT&T), and others have promised huge hiring and additional spending to improve the job market…right?

KAD January 22, 2018 at 3:07 PM

No, I would not shop there. People need jobs.

Dorothy January 22, 2018 at 3:39 PM

Can I send a robot instead?

chuckie the troll January 22, 2018 at 4:02 PM

Only if your robot promises not to flirt with their robots of fondle the sensors!

Silva January 22, 2018 at 3:50 PM

Nope. They’re already getting too big of a share of the marketplace, and we need jobs.

RANDOM TASK January 22, 2018 at 4:13 PM

great concept and application …this can be the future and was derived from a seattle based company so the treehugging do-gooders..of the country better get in line or rather lack there of.
besides as stated they have multiple employees stocking shelves and providing food and beverage …soak it up this is great and they didn’t have to use one corrupt politician to do it …thumbs up

ClayDen January 22, 2018 at 5:57 PM

They will likely replace the humans stocking shelves and providing food and beverage with robots in the near future. The robots will be made in automated factories. The mechanical, electrical and software engineers are the winners here.

Chicken Little January 22, 2018 at 5:00 PM

I doubt they’ll lose any more merchandise to shoplifting than “normal” stores do. After all, there’s nothing stopping somebody from running out of pretty much any store without paying. And laugh if you want, but I truly believe that the vast majority of people are honest.

Hmmmm January 22, 2018 at 5:38 PM

People said getting telephones that callers can dial themselves will put the operators out of work which it did. But we adapt.

Just like the 411 information operators were put out of work by the internet but we adapted.

Julio January 22, 2018 at 6:23 PM

No. Don’t do anything with Amazon now and never will. Cash and carry. Don’t do self check out now either.

Pony January 22, 2018 at 6:37 PM

Talk about Big Brother. Do you get a receipt when you leave the store? Sounds like a great way to rip customers off if they don’t

Yolanda January 22, 2018 at 8:19 PM

This may sound silly, but I am 100% serious in asking this question. If stores rely on face-recognition cameras alone, how does this work with twins? How does the camera distinguish in the case of identical twins? Are other methods of identification used as well?

Fact Checker January 22, 2018 at 11:39 PM

Yolanda, they are not relying solely on facial recognition. To shop there you must have the Amazon Go app on your phone. As you enter the store, you scan yourself in with your phone. They can then track you and your phone as you move about the store.

Michael Langley January 22, 2018 at 10:42 PM

My initial reaction was that all the “groceries” seemed to be prepackaged individual meals in plastic shells.Are we giving up variety for somebodies idea of convenience? A couple of decades ago, cutting edge condos were being built in Manhattan without kitchens, because it was more “convenient” to eat out or have meals delivered from hip eateries. That idea died quietly. I know that automation will continue to eliminate jobs, but not all jobs are expendable and customer service is still a positive part of shopping.
I am not for Go Store, so I must forgo.

Fact Checker January 23, 2018 at 12:15 AM

Yes, I would shop there. It looks very convenient. I don’t see any advantage to having to stand in line for a checkout clerk to scan and bag my items if I can just pick up what I need and walk out the door. I can imagine this concept working very well in the right location, with the right mix of products. It would be great in an airport terminal. Walk in. Pick up a sandwich, a bottle of water, some aspirin, and a magazine. Walk right out the door and be on your way to your gate.

As for it being too “Big Brother”-ish with Amazon knowing what I am buying, Safeway, Lucky’s, CVS, K-Mart, etc. already keep track of everything I buy because I use their loyalty cards to save a few bucks.

As for being worried about credit card security, this is probably a more secure way to shop than using a credit card at Safeway. Amazon already has my credit card info. I won’t have to take out my card and run it through a reader each time I shop at an Amazon Go store.

I have no problem with Amazon. They are an innovative company that continually comes up with new and better ways to sell products. Isn’t that what capitalism and the free enterprise system are all about?

Starman January 23, 2018 at 12:49 AM

Hell no. You can see how they handled house delivery service it got hacked same here.

Joatmeal January 23, 2018 at 7:07 AM

Some major stores you visit are already tracking you while you shop.

Aspirin January 23, 2018 at 8:17 AM

10 checkers will be replaced by 15 techies trying to keep everything running.

It is the future.

Aspirin January 23, 2018 at 8:24 AM

Every cart leaving a Costco store is checked against the sales receipt. I’ll bet this prevents a lot of theft.

I favor a system of human checkers and inspectors at the exit.

But then I am of a generation that likes dealing with people instead of a machine.

Chester E. Kitty January 23, 2018 at 8:32 AM

I am totally against this! We need to create more jobs; not take them away. And I don’t like the fact that they call bill me from me just walking into a store…way too big brother-ish!

I would be curious to what all the Millennials think … I’m sure they are all for it because all they want is ease and convenience. I’m a baby boomer … I like some ease and convenience but not at the cost of jobs and my privacy. Wish I knew which comments were from which age group …

Captain Bebops January 23, 2018 at 9:34 AM

Now all is needed is robot customers. Jeff Bezos can sit in his castle served by his robot staff and kept company by his robot family. Nobody to complain about him. And in the future all restaurants will be Taco Bell and Amazon will own Taco Bell too. What do robot customers eat?

ConcordMike January 23, 2018 at 11:54 AM


ConcordMike January 23, 2018 at 11:53 AM

This would be great for quick lunches in business districts, at hospitals where the cafeterias close at 7pm every night and most 7-Elevens. Sorry 7-Eleven.
So if you need to have the Amazon Go app on your phone, what is to prevent someone from swiping your phone and going on a shopping spree? I see a new crime evolving.
When everyone talks about interacting with grocery store staff/checkers, my Safeway staff seem a lot bitter and sour pussed these days than ten years ago. Our unions have gotten weaker and the big conglomerates see dollar signs over customer service. Welcome to the 99% everyone. If you are reading this on Claycord, pretty good chance you are not in the one percent club of billionaires who see you as a number, not a human being.

Comments on this entry are closed.

Previous post:

Next post: