Rumors are swirling that Amazon may be opening up more locations of their cashier-less convenience stores, Amazon Go, this year. The first location is a rousing success so it makes sense that the company may be eying expansion in its ever growing quest for grocery related dominance. The store made headlines for its AI reliant technology and slightly delayed opening day.
According to Recode, there may be as many as six new Amazon Go locations in the works. While most of them would still be in Seattle, there’s talk of one in Los Angeles. Amazon would not comment on the expansion rumor, but there were reports of talks between Amazon and developer Rick Caruso about opening up an Amazon Go at The Grove.
As one of our contributors said of their Amazon Go shopping experience:
As I browse, the issue of obsolescence is on my mind. During the fifteen minutes I explore the store, I overhear a total of zero conversations about automation and its impact on the workforce as a whole, the economy, or the (live human) individuals who work in retail. Change is scary, and inevitably someone is going to lose, and someone else is going to win. If anyone else is thinking about that, then they’re keeping their thoughts to themselves.
Recode points out that as of 2016 there were 3.5 million cashier jobs in the U.S. and while there is a staff of greeters and folks in the kitchen preparing fresh food, if this technology takes off in other chains, it could lead to job reduction. However, as The Stranger pointed out, it sure seems to take a lot of people to run the cashierless store.