Amazon's 'Just Walk Out' tech is coming to airport stores in March

Igor Bonifacic
Contributing Writer
OTG

That didn't take long. One of the first stores in the US to feature Amazon's Just Walk Out checkout-free technology will open on March 16th, one week after the company announced it was licensing the platform to retailers. You'll find the store, a CIBO Express Gourmet Market, at Newark Liberty International Airport Terminal C, with more locations to follow. When you visit the store, you'll be able to buy food and drinks without interacting with a cashier.

OTG, the company that owns and operates the CIBO Express Gourmet Markets chain, says it plans to deploy the technology at additional stores located at LaGuardia and Newark airports. The company operates approximately 100 CIBO Express locations at 10 major airports across North America. Some of the more notable airports where it has stores include JFK in New York City, George Bush Intercontinental in Houston and Pearson International in Toronto.

If you've shopped at an Amazon Go location before, the experience is broadly similar. The one notable difference is that you don't need to install the Amazon Go app on your phone before entering the store. Instead, you insert a credit card into one of the gated turnstiles at the front. The only evidence you'll see of Amazon's involvement in the process is a sign that says, "Just Walk Out technology by Amazon," as you walk through a turnstile. Once you're inside, you can go shopping as you usually would at any other store. Once you're ready to leave, that's it: you simply leave. The system will automatically bill as you exit.

When Amazon announced it had started licensing its checkout-free technology to retailers, it told Reuters it had signed deals with "several" customers to expand the availability of the technology. With analysts predicting the market for cashier-less retail could grow to $50 billion, what's a trickle now could soon turn into a flood.