This smart shopping cart eliminates the need for cashiers


January 12, 2019

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It looks like a new startup – not Amazon – might be the one to put an end to cashiers in stores.

The past couple decades have seen a big shake-up in how we buy our groceries. From self-checkout lines to meal delivery kits to Amazon Go stores, the whole experience has completely changed from how our grandparents shopped. And a startup called Caper has developed yet another shopping innovation. It’s a solution that combines Amazon Go’s cashierless checkout with the pick-up-and-go experience of shopping in person.

Caper has developed a shopping cart that lets customers scan items as they’re shopping and pay for whatever they’ve picked up before they leave. The cart features an interactive display and a card reader. The cart is already in use in two stores in New York City and lists Key Food Fresh, Met Fresh, and Pioneer Supermarkets as the company’s retail partners. This seems like an ideal option for stores that want to streamline physical shopping, but can’t quite get to the level that an Amazon Go store offers.

The cart is able to show customers deals on similar products to what they’re scanning or products they’re near. Caper claims this leads to customers purchasing 18 per cent more products when using the automated carts. Caper’s long term goal is to do away with the scanner technology entirely and rely on a deep learning algorithm that can identify items through cameras and scales in the cart.

According to TechCrunch, Caper is planning on expanding to 150 more storefronts in 2019 and has the support of Max Mullen, the co-founder of Instacart, as an investor. So, it might not be too long before you get to take one of these fancy shopping carts for a spin at your grocery store.

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