Amazon to Bring Pay by Palm to All Whole Foods Stores
Amazon.com will let shoppers pay with their palms at all Whole Foods stores by the end of the year, the company announced last week. Amazon One is a biometric technology that lets users enter and pay for items at stores by placing a palm over a scanning device. Shoppers first have to connect their palm to a stored credit card. After that, they can pay by simply waving their hand over the kiosk. The company first introduced the technology in its Go cashierless stores, but later began adding it to Whole Foods supermarkets. Amazon One is now in more than 200 Whole Foods locations, and the company said it will be available in all of the grocer’s roughly 500 stores in the coming months.
Total Retail's Take: Innovations in payments have come a long way, and Amazon continues to be a trailblazer in this arena. Its Go stores, where people scan in via their phone and then leave without going through a checkout station to pay for their items, were revolutionary and generated a whole lot of publicity (although the end results left something to be desired). And now the retail giant is following that up with pay-by-palm technology at its Whole Foods stores. I'm bearish on mass consumer adoption of the biometric technology for a couple of reasons. One, a lack of consumer awareness. Two, worry about the experience itself. Will it save them time? Be more seamless than paying via a credit card or even a mobile wallet? Time will tell, but for now Amazon is banking on the "growing demand" for the service.