Thursday , June 20, 2024

Beyond Amazon: 57,000 Stores Globally Are Offering Mobile Self-Checkout Technology Inc. grabbed headlines last week with its announcement that it will deploy its palm-reading checkout technology in all of its more than 500 U.S. Whole Foods stores, but it turns out scanning capability from a wide variety of software companies is taking over checkout duty worldwide, according to recent research.

Indeed, such is the ferment in this market that at least 50 software developers are now working closely with major merchants around the world on various forms of self-checkout technology, according to a report from RBR Data Services, a United Kingdom-based research firm and a unit of Datos Insights. Already, some 57,000 stores worldwide are offering self-checkout or self-scanning technology for customer use, with 40% of them relying on software from outside developers, says the report, “Mobile Self-Scanning and Checkout-Free 2023,” released last week.

The other 60% are offering checkouts that run on proprietary software, the researcher says, usually in cooperation with companies that develop barcode-scanning technology.

Amazon One at Whole Foods: Self checkout in various forms is rising fast, says an RBR report.

Top vendors to this market are China’s WeChat, with a 28% share of store locations, followed by Extenda Retail (16%), GK Software (7%), Budgetbox (6%), NCR (6%), and Shopreme (5%), according to the report. On the hardware side, U.S.-based Zebra Technologies Corp. is the dominant supplier, accounting for three-quarters of the handheld scanners used in more than 12,000 stores around the world, the report says.

In a separate report, “Global EPOS and Self-Checkout 2023,” RBR reports that more than 190,000 self-checkout “units” were shipped to clients around the world in 2022, the second-highest yearly total ever.

Amazon’s palm-reading checkout scanners, a technology the company calls Amazon One, are now in use in more than 400 locations globally, including Panera Bread restaurants and some stadiums in addition to Whole Foods stores.

Projections are that the market will only grow faster. “A more diverse range of retailers in an increasing number of geographies are introducing mobile self-scanning, so the demand for hardware and software to drive these projects is set to continue,” notes RBR’s Alex Maple, who directed the research for the report, in a statement.

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