The e-commerce powerhouse is planning to open their physical store concept, Amazon Go, in NYC. First introduced to Seattle earlier this year, the stores carry groceries, meal kits and ready-to-eat foods for every meal, all while being check-out and cashier free. Instead, you use an app to enter the store, where a virtual shopping cart is created that detects when you take items off of shelves and charges you for them when you leave the store.
News broke after Amazon began posting job listings for several positions for the NYC shop, adding New York to the list of cities getting a brick-and-mortar store (though we still don’t know when and where) with San Francisco and Chicago. While using cameras, sensors and artificial intelligence may be the future of in-store shopping, there’s still a need for employees. Think about it, while nobody is going to ring you up, they’ll still need people to stock shelves and listen to complaining customers.
It will be interesting to see if eventually Amazon will employ the same technology at Whole Foods bringing an end to the seemingly never-ending lines of New Yorkers stocking up on kombucha and wild-caught salmon. However, if this major shift in retail becomes common place, it could mean the end of millions of cashier jobs.