REWE Group has opened a new store on Zeppelinstrasse in Cologne that offers a hybrid shopping service; offering customers the option to pay at the checkout or via the retailer's 'Pick & Go' service.
Customers who use 'Pick & Go' have their purchases recorded securely through a camera and sensor technology, and are automatically billed after leaving the store without a checkout process.
The retailer has sought to make the process as easy as possible for customers – if they use the autonomous checkout, i.e. shopping without an active checkout process at the checkout, they log into the barrier using the REWE 'Pick & Go' app.
Their receipt appears automatically and quickly in the app, and in case of any discrepancies on the receipt, a complaint can be made via the app within 24 hours after purchase.
Pick & Go
The entire assortment of the store is available via Pick & Go, including fresh baked goods, fruit and vegetables, dry assortment, frozen products and freshly-prepared meals.
Intelligent cameras and sensors in the shelves as well as other high-tech components and around six kilometers of high-speed network cables are at the core of the system.
Data protection was and is a central aspect in the development and operation of the system, the retailer added. Images captured by customers are processed in a data-saving manner and are used exclusively to enable cash-free shopping in a hybrid store.
The system only collects data in order to recognise which products are removed or put back. There is no facial recognition, nor can the system recognise customers after a visit to the store.
"After exciting months of beta testing, we are now pleased to finally be able to offer our customers the 'Pick & Go' system live as an additional shopping option. We have been approached many times and have heard great interest and positive feedback from our customers. As a team, we are proud to be the first store with this hybrid approach," said store manager, Darius Malucha.