Alessia Gaspodini
November 30, 2022

Cashierless stores: is this the future of retail?

Do you know what these numbers, 87, 252 and 12000, have in common?
87 were the checkout-free contactless stores worldwide in 2020; 252, in 2021; and 12000 is the expected number in 2027 (RBR). The number of such stores climbed so quickly that some people believe they represent the future of retail. Do they?

Easier, faster, and more convenient. No line, no waiting, and more free time. Cashierless stores (also called till-less stores, checkout-free stores or Just Walk Out stores) started revolutionizing our way of shopping in 2018, when the first Amazon Go store opened in Seattle, USA. Using Just Walk Out Technology, people can grab the products they want and simply get out of the store without standing in any line (credits: deep learning). JWO is based on artificial intelligence, image recognition and sensors and the experience is improved by state-of-the-art computer vision (CV). Cool, right?


Pioneer of this technology is Amazon Go. Amazon Go till-less stores are, as of 2022, 29 (of which 10 only in New York). With a yearly average revenue of $1.5 million per store, many more companies (including Aldi for example) are now drawing inspiration from the American giant and heavily investing in Just Walk Out stores. We’ve seen a few settling down around worldwide, but with different technologies behind. In Dallas, Sam’s club, a Walmart owned grocery store, and 7-eleven use a self-checkout program through which people scan the items themselves (a mobile app is required) and then leave the store.


Through SCOUT, our Future Intelligence platform, we could analyze TOP companies and startups working on JWO technology (and competitors). Who are the key players in this sector? And what specifically are they researching on? Here are the lists, both sorted by patents, to give you an overview about the businesses that are dominating the R&D field of cashless stores.

Top companies dominating the R&D field of cashless stores


Top startups dominating the R&D field of cashless stores


More insights:

It is estimated that long checkouts cost businesses $37.7 million since they discourage customers from purchasing. A lot of money is at stake!
Besides avoiding queues (and money waste), checkout-free stores allow customers to be familiar with touchless experiences (matching with social distancing guidelines). It’s not anymore a matter of covid or not, pandemic or not. Shoppers declare that they prefer contactless and digital payments anyway.

What’s more interesting is that the technology behind cashierless stores can be applied to other fields and products as well. The Trends Wordcloud below displays trend topics and emerging technologies most relevant to the query (in our case, cashierless stores) - the bigger size, the most relevant.

Trends Wordcloud (1)-2

By clicking on one of the trend topics/emerging technologies within the wordcloud, you can display a list of relevant documents and deep dive into each of these cutting-edge innovations. Ready to play with our AI-powered tool, SCOUT?
Click here to have FREE access to this project. Be sure you don’t miss it… FREE access is limited!


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