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06/02/2022

Amazon expands cashierless grocery format in California

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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Amazon One palm
The latest Amazon Fresh store features ‘Just Walk Out’ shopping.

Southern California has another new high-tech Amazon Fresh grocery store.

Three months after introducing three new Amazon Fresh grocery locations in the Southern California market, Amazon is opening an Amazon Fresh store in Huntington Beach, Calif. The approximately 35,000-sq.-ft. site features Amazon’s “Just Walk Out” frictionless, cashierless shopping technology.

Of the 31 Amazon Fresh stores (locations at end of article) opened to date, the new Huntington Beach location is the 15th in Southern California. In addition, Amazon recently announced it is now hiring for hundreds of full- and part-time employees for two Amazon Fresh grocery stores that will open in Paramus, N.J., and Oceanside, N.Y. These will be the first Amazon Fresh store locations in each state, and both will feature Just Walk Out shopping.

Customers who opt for Just Walk Out shopping can enter the store by scanning the in-store QR code in their Amazon app, use the Amazon One proprietary palm payment solution, or insert a credit or debit card linked to their Amazon account to open the Just Walk Out gates.

Just Walk Out leverages a combination of computer vision, sensor fusion and deep learning that enables shoppers to shop the store, pick out what they want and skip the checkout when they’re done. Anyone shopping at the new Amazon Fresh store can utilize the cashierless technology, which connects to their Amazon account or credit card.

Once inside the store, customers can shop like normal. Anything they take off the shelf is automatically added to their virtual cart, and anything they put back on the shelf comes out of their virtual cart. At the end of their trip, customers scan their QR code or palm again to exit.

[Read more: First Look: Amazon debuts new high-tech grocery store]

Originally available only in Amazon Go convenience and small-format grocery stores, Amazon then began rolling out Just Walk Out to select Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods locations, and also licenses the technology to third-party retailers.

Amazon now operates 31 Amazon Fresh stores across the U.S., including 14 in California, seven in Illinois, four in Washington state (including one designed to be zero net carbon), two in Virginia, and one each in Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. Amazon Fresh stores are designed from the ground up to offer a seamless shopping experience, with extra features for members of the Amazon Prime paid loyalty program.

Amazon is opening its latest high-tech Amazon Fresh location with Just Walk Out shopping a couple of months after opening one in Fairfax, Va., and about three months after opening a Just Walk Out-enabled Amazon Fresh store in Naperville, Ill. So far in 2022, Amazon has also provided Just Walk Out at a newly opened Amazon Fresh store in Moorpark, Calif., as well as launching the autonomous checkout experience in its Whole Foods Market division at stores in Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles. The company plans to additionally open a “Just Walk Out”-enabled Whole Foods store in Sherman Oaks, Calif., during 2022.

Originally available only in Amazon Go convenience and small-format grocery stores, Amazon then began rolling out Just Walk Out to select Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods locations, and also licenses the technology to third-party retailers.