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Shinsegae I&C to open an automated store

Shinsegae I&C

Shinsegae I&C is going after Amazon Go by opening its first automated store that allows shoppers to take the items they need and walk out of the store without interacting with a check-out system, the company said.

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The IT service providing unit of Shinsegae Group said it will set up the cashier-less grocery store at its new data center in Gimpo, Gyeonggi Province.

Just like Amazon Go, the company will use “just walk out” technology and sensors to automatically detect what shoppers are buying.

“We will apply advanced technologies, which include artificial intelligence (AI), computer vision and cloud point-of-scale (POS) into retail business solutions to offer an innovative shopping experience,” a Shinsegae I&C official said.

The store will open to the public September 30 after a trial run open only to the company’s employees.

Shinsegae I&C will manage technical operations while emart24, a convenience store chain, will be responsible for supplying the goods and operating the store.

Under the new system, shoppers will be able to scan their QR code issued through Shinsegae’s SSG Pay or emart24 app upon entry and add items to their virtual carts.

The store relies on 30 cameras and sensors to track what shoppers take from the shelves, and what they put back.

Shoppers are billed after leaving the store through the SSG Pay app via cloud POS system. It takes between five seconds and five minutes to complete the payment.

“The store will be a ground-breaking test bed where we apply and test various advanced technologies. We plan to operate a store where customers can experience retail technology and enjoy real shopping,” said Kim Jang-wook, CEO of Shinsegae I&C.

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Apart from the automated store, Shinsegae I&C will set up a high-tech vending machine zone, where customers can purchase up to five items through a credit card, a transportation card or a digital payment service via cloud POS.