Amazon removing cashier-less 'Just Walk Out' technology from grocery stores

Customers carry their purchases as they leave the UK's first branch of Amazon Fresh, on March 04, 2021, in the Ealing area of London, England.

Amazon has made the strategic decision to bid farewell to its "Just Walk Out" technology in Amazon Fresh stores, the Associated Press reported on Tuesday.

This technology, which enabled customers to make purchases without enduring the hassle of waiting in line, is being replaced as part of the company's overhaul of its grocery chain. 

In its place, Amazon is introducing Dash Carts that enable shoppers to scan groceries, connect to online shopping lists, and complete their grocery checkout process. Dash Carts have been tested at select Fresh and Whole Foods locations.

Amazon spokesperson Carly Golden noted that customer feedback indicated a desire to both skip checkout lines and view receipts and savings during shopping. 

RELATED: Walmart, Target limiting self-checkouts in some stores. Will others follow suit?

She stated that the introduction of smart carts addresses these needs, providing customers with both benefits while enabling them to skip the checkout line.

Amazon's decision was first reported by The Information.

Amazon, headquartered in Seattle, runs numerous Fresh grocery stores nationwide, with a significant presence in California, Illinois, Virginia, and Washington state. Additionally, the company operates cashier-free convenience stores branded as Amazon Go and acquired Whole Foods in 2017 for $13.7 billion.


The entrance to the new Amazon Go store features a gate that opens with your Amazon account or a palm print in Whittier, CA, on Monday, September 12, 2022.

As reports of theft persist, numerous companies are discontinuing self-checkout options. 

RELATED: Nearly half of shoppers who stole using self-checkout machine say they'd do it again: Survey

According to a 2023 survey by LendingTree, 15% of consumers admit to stealing items while using self-checkout machines, with another 44% expressing a willingness to do so again. 

This trend suggests a potential resurgence of human cashiers. Although self-checkout stations were initially embraced in the early 2000s as a cost-cutting measure, experts now speculate that, among various concerns, people are exploiting these systems for theft purposes.