Whole Foods owner Amazon is rolling out its cashier-less payment technology at its Whole Foods locations in D.C.’s Glover Park and Sherman Oaks, California. They are the first two Whole Foods stores to get the technology.
The Glover Park Whole Foods closed more than four years ago and has remained closed during a lengthy legal battle with the landlord of the space it occupies at 2323 Wisconsin Ave. NW. It appears to be reopening sometime next year, according to an Amazon blog post announcing the new technology.
An Amazon spokesman did not immediately respond to an inquiry about when exactly the D.C. store would reopen.
A Whole Foods spokesperson, asked by email about an opening date, responded by saying the company had no additional details to add.
The cashier-less technology is already an option in Amazon Fresh grocery stores, including the recently opened locations in Chevy Chase, Maryland and D.C.’s Logan Circle. Its smaller convenience-type Amazon Go stores also have the walk out option.
The Just Walk Out technology uses a combination of computer vision, sensor fusion and deep learning. Customers can shop three ways: by scanning a QR code in the Whole Foods or Amazon app, hovering their palm using Amazon One, which is similar to a fingerprint or inserting a credit or debit card linked to their Amazon account. After leaving the store, customers receive a digital receipt.
The stores will be stocked with the typical Whole Foods fare, including seafood, fresh-squeezed orange juice and organic vegetables.
Both stores will have self-checkout lanes for shoppers who don’t want to use the new technology.
Amazon has no current plans to test the walk out option at other Whole Foods stores.
“For now we’re excited to see how customers like being able to skip the checkout and use Just Walk Out shopping when we open our doors in Sherman Oaks and Washington, D.C. next year, and we’ll go from there,” the blog post said.
Amazon first unveiled the cashier-less technology in 2018 at an Amazon Go convenience store and has expanded it to larger Amazon supermarkets.