First Amazon Go Store Outside Seattle Opens in Chicago

Amazon's first automated check-out store outside Seattle opened in Chicago on Monday.

First announced in May, the Amazon Go concept store is located at 113 S. Franklin St. in the city's Loop, the online retail giant said in a statement. 

The company's first store opened to the public in Seattle - where it's headquartered - last year and was followed by two more in the same city after that. The stores sell things typically found at a convenience store - minus the cashiers, lines and registers.

Unlike most brick-and-mortar retail operations, shoppers enter by scanning the Amazon Go smartphone app at a turnstile. When they pull an item of the shelf, it's added to their virtual cart. If the item is placed back on the shelf, it is removed from the virtual cart. Shoppers are charged when they leave the store.

The company says it uses computer vision, machine learning algorithms and sensors to figure out what people are grabbing off its store shelves.

The store is not without employees — Amazon says there will be people there making food, stocking shelves and helping customers.

Amazon says families can shop together with just one phone scanning everyone in. Anything they grab from the shelf will also be added to the tab of the person who signed them in. But don't help out strangers: Amazon warns that grabbing an item from the shelf for someone else means you'll be charged for it.

Open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, Chicago's Amazon Go is about 2,000 square feet in size and offers ready-to-eat meals, snacks and meal kits.

The public opening in Chicago is another sign that Amazon's efforts to expand its physical presence are rolling on. It's opened more than a dozen bookstores, taken over space in some Kohl's department stores and bought Whole Foods in 2017, giving it 470 grocery stores.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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