Amazon Launches Grab-and-Go Technology at Whole Foods

Whole Foods Market will open two stores featuring Just Walk Out technology.

September 09, 2021

Whole Foods Store

SEATTLE—Soon you’ll be able to grab your organic spring mix at Whole Foods and walk out of the store. Amazon announced it is opening two Whole Foods Market stores equipped with Just Walk Out technology, which allows customers to bypass the self-checkout line and walk out of the store with their products, according to Amazon.

“We launched the technology first in Amazon Go several years ago and, since then, we’ve gotten a lot of great feedback from customers who love being able to quickly and easily shop and skip the checkout line,” said Dilip Kumar, vice president, physical retail and technology, Amazon, in an announcement on the company’s website.

One store will open in Washington, D.C., in the Glover Park neighborhood, and the other will be in Sherman Oaks, Calif.

The technology works by a combination of computer vision, sensor fusion and deep learning. Amazon equated it to what you’d find in a self-driving car. When shoppers arrive at the store, they can choose if they want to shop using Just Walk Out technology or the self-checkout lanes. If they choose the technology, they enter the store in three ways: by scanning the QR code in the Whole Foods Market or Amazon app, hovering their palm using Amazon One or inserting a credit or debit card linked to their Amazon account.

When shoppers are ready to exit with their goods, they can scan or insert their entry method again to exit. Customers who used the Just Walk Out technology receive a digital receipt which is available on the Whole Foods Market app.

Ninety percent of people used unattended retail as much as they had prior to the pandemic or more during the pandemic, reported NACS Daily, and more retailers are exploring ways to eliminate friction for customers, including skipping the checkout line.

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