A new technology is being tested in Dallas by the Walmart-owned wholesale club.
Sam’s Club Now is an innovative concept store that will soon open its doors in the Dallas, Texas area. The store is designed to test out new concepts involving mobile shopping and mobile checkout.
The Dallas store will be the first to test the technology developed to provide a full mobile shopping experience.
In addition to testing mobile checkout, Sam’s Club Now will also be testing other concepts. Among these include electronic shelf labels, augmented reality, AI-infused shopping, a special camera system for inventory management, wayfinding technology for in-store navigation, and more.
While the store will still have employees, there will not be cashiers. Instead, the store will be staffed with “Member Hosts,” who will have a role that is more like a concierge, according to Sam’s Club.
The Sam’s Club Now mobile app will eliminate the need for cashiers.
Customers will use a specialized mobile app to scan the items they wish to buy. Then, before leaving the store, customers will scan a code at the exit and be billed automatically for their purchases. In other words, point-of-sale cashier stands will not exist in these stores.
In addition to the app featuring the company’s existing “Scan & Go” technology, it will also have a built-in map to help customer’s find the right aisle for the product they wish to find. Furthermore, over time, this mapping system will supposedly be upgraded with beacon technology to provide customers with the best mapped route of the store based on their shopping list, which is powered by AI (artificial intelligence) tech.
The app will also allow Sam’s Club customers to test augmented reality as a way of highlighting “stories” regarding the products being sold and their features as well as providing a way to learn how items are sourced, reported TechCrunch.
While it’s hard to imagine consumers using this AR feature, on a more practical note, the app does give users the chance to place pickup orders or same-day delivery orders.
Just like other Sam’s Club stores, consumers who would like to experience and shop at Sam’s Club Now will need a membership to shop there.