The grind of working in a grocery store is real. I was a cashier for several years, and you would believe how dirty my hands were some days! And even with all of the raw meat juice, moist money, and spilled milk, I am thankful that I had that job.

From Self-Check to Artificial Intelligence

I'm sure you've noticed that there are fewer cashiers and more self-checkout lanes in practically every store these days. You might see one cashier assisting ten self-checkout registers, instead of having more actual cashiers.

PHOTO: canva robot shop grocery
PHOTO: canva robot shop grocery
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Now, cashiers could be at risk of losing their jobs to AI (Artificial Intelligence). ALDI is testing a checkout-free system in one Illinois store. It's called ALDIgo and it is supposed to speed up the checkout process and save time.

There are no special shelves, carts, or gates at the entrance. When done, shoppers can pay with either their credit or debit card or with the Grabango app, at the Grabango pay station near the exit.

Just Walk Out

Here is an example of Amazon's Just Walk Out technology that is similar to the ADLIgo system. The biggest difference between the two systems is the size of the store it's capable of servicing. Grabango is specifically for larger retail and grocery stores.

So. Many. Questions.

Personally, I would feel like I'm going to be stopped for shoplifting if I didn't ring up items at a register or scan them into an app. What happens if you are charged the wrong price? Will the AI get confused if I put something in my cart, then take it out, and change my mind again? Time will tell how these new AI-powered systems will affect cashier positions and other jobs in general.

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