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Amazon looks to airports for cashier-less stores: report

Amazon looks to airports for cashier-less stores: report
[Photo: courtesy of Amazon]

Amazon is always in expand mode. It’s building out its technology offerings, always trying to grow its online domination, and is also looking into expanding its physical footprint. And it looks like airports may be one of Amazon’s new targets.

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Earlier this year, the company opened its first Amazon Go store to the public. The space used cashier-less technology, meaning customers could walk in, check in via an app, and then simply put the items they wanted in their bags and walk out of the store. The company has since announced plans to open many more of these stores. Meanwhile, it’s also reportedly looking at expanding the use of this technology to larger stores, which will likely cause many Whole Foods workers distress.

A new report from Reuters says that Amazon is looking at implementing cashier-free stores in airports, citing “public records and a person familiar with the strategy.”

According to unearthed emails, Amazon requested meetings with officials from both Los Angeles International Airport as well as San Jose International Airport. It’s unclear whether any real plans have been developed beyond initial meetings.

This sort of project would put an Amazon storefront in front of tens of millions of travelers every year. At the same time, it would require more work to bring to life than simply buying a storefront on a street corner. Given Amazon’s penchant for trying to keep plans mum, bidding on retail space in airports–many of which are publicly run, Reuters notes–could put the company in the uncomfortable position of disclosing more than it wants the public to know. I reached out to Amazon and a spokesperson declined to comment.

Even so, it looks like the e-commerce giant is at least considering the opportunity. And it’s true that it may be more convenient to simply walk into a store and walk out with a book, rather than wait on line at Hudson News.

You can read the full Reuters story here. 

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