This week Amazon opened its first cashierless store in NYC and its 12th location in the Unites States. The opening was not without controversy as critics argued that the cashless stores would discriminate against customers without a bank account. According to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, 8.4 million households, or roughly 6.5% of all households in America, were unbanked in 2018. Because of this, some city and states have banned cashless stores. Massachusetts, Philadelphia, and New Jersey require stores to accept cash payment, and San Francisco and New York City may follow. After hitting some resistance, Amazon opted for their NYC location to have a cash option.
Amazon Go hopes to cash out on New Yorkers that are in a rush and don’t want to wait on a long checkout line. The 1,300-square-foot store is located in downtown Manhattan in the Brookfield Place shopping center (230 Vesey St) on the second level. In all other 11 locations, a customer is able to enter the store, shop and check out (without a cash option) using just their smart phone.
The new store will offer meal kits, snacks and prepared meals, which are made by Amazon and local eateries including Hale & Hearty and Magnolia Bakery. By 2021, Amazon will open as many as 3,000 Amazon Go locations across the United States.
The public seems pretty divided on Amazon Go, are you going to shop there?