Automated checkouts are the future

They’re easy to use, faster, and gives a shoppers more control

(Kristen Frier)

(Kristen Frier)


If you are a regular grocery store shopper, then you understand the easy and perfect usability of self-checkouts. Not only are they much faster than the traditional cashier checkout, but it gives you control and allows you to have a little bit of fun while spending your money. 

There has always been a question on whether stores will ever move to a fully self-automated system and get rid of traditional checkouts altogether, and for some stores like Aisle24 in Toronto and Montreal, this is becoming a reality.

The steps are quite simple and involve a self-operated kiosk and an app. So far, they have been operating strictly out of Toronto and Montreal, but there is talk of bringing it to Burnaby, Coquitlam, and Vancouver, with the first store opening in early 2022. 

Along with the cashier-less attribute, Aisle24 will incorporate technology like digital price tags and a mobile app for all the purchases and data. And for the stores in residential complexes, this app will come with an unlocking door function to enable safety and caution for all residents of the area. 

As someone who almost always prefers stores having a self-checkout station, the possibility of Aisle24 or other similar stores opening locally is music to my ears. 

There are both challenges and benefits that come with any change to a traditional system. The benefits for this are especially helpful in the world of COVID-19. Since businesses have had to make health and safety plans during the pandemic, many stores have added self-checkout systems. The plans for Aisle24 to fully incorporate self-automated checkouts will help with the anxieties of having to expose oneself to several human interactions. 

Having a stranger touch your items with no idea whether they are vaccinated or where they have been is a huge stressor. Being able to handle everything yourself, and knowing to some extent that it eliminates one step of extra contact, eases some of the fear. Aisle24 eliminates one further step by allowing a lot of the purchases to be done through the app. 

The main challenge with this innovation is the lack of a need for checkout employees, and the resulting loss of jobs. We never want to take away someone’s ability to make a living, but customers like to be quick and efficient. 

Having this ability for customers to scan their items would be much faster and get people in and out of the store even quicker. The most irritated customers usually come from waiting in a long wild line just to pay for their groceries. 

Not only will this benefit customers long term, but it will benefit companies as well when word gets out that these new systems offer safer and more efficient ways to shop.