Amazon has announced it will close all of its cashier-less Go convenience stores in San Francisco

Wasn’t this supposed to be the next big thing?

Amazon has announced it will close all of its cashier-less Go convenience stores in San Francisco on April 1.

The closure of four Go stores in San Francisco will shut all physical stores in the Bay Area. The closures, announced last week, will also impact two stores in Seattle and two in New York City, the company said.

“Like any physical retailer, we periodically assess our portfolio of stores and make optimization decisions along the way,” a company spokesperson said in a statement. “In this case, we’ve decided to close a small number of Amazon Go stores in Seattle, New York City, and San Francisco. We remain committed to the Amazon Go format, operate more than 20 Amazon Go stores across the U.S., and will continue to learn which locations and features resonate most with customers as we keep evolving our Amazon Go stores.”

The San Francisco stores are at 300 California St., 3 Embarcadero Center, 98 Post St. and 575 Market St.

The company said it will work with affected workers to find new roles at Amazon and is still looking to open more Go stores elsewhere. Go stores don’t have cashiers, but workers prepare food and stock shelves.

Amazon opened its first Go stores in 2018, a move that many thought was bringing the future of retail to the city, where smartphones replace cashiers and registers. Shoppers could grab items and pay automatically through smartphones to skip lines. The company expanded to three stores in less than a year.

Last year, the company announced that it would close more than 50 of its physical retail stores, according to the New York Times. The closures impacted two dozen bookstores and about 30 4-star stores, which sell general merchandise.

Earlier this year, Amazon released more details about a series of layoffs that ultimately affected 18,000 employees across the company. Those layoffs impacted 104 workers in its San Francisco offices and 157 employees across its Sunnyvale locations.
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This sounds like so much BS:
Like any physical retailer, we periodically assess our portfolio of stores and make optimization decisions along the way,

I can’t quite make their numbers add up either.

The closure of four Go stores in San Francisco will shut all physical stores in the Bay Area. The closures, announced last week, will also impact two stores in Seattle and two in New York City, the company said.

That sounds like they’re closing 8 total. But then…

We remain committed to the Amazon Go format, operate more than 20 Amazon Go stores across the U.S.

If you have 20 (or thereabouts) and you’re closing 8, how committed are you, really?

In this case, we’ve decided to close a small number of Amazon Go stores

Right. Because almost half is a ‘small number’. :roll_eyes:

Maybe we should use a Tasmanian Devil as our SAS logo, since Amazon is all about the spin. :laughing:

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These are locations that have seen so much shoplifting theft. I don’t really know how they work but without a cashier, maybe they are more prone to “walk outs”. Maybe a valid cc with pre auth required to enter the store. Wouldn’t be any different than a gas pump :man_shrugging:

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The way they are stated to work is you scan into the store (via a turnstile) with biometrics and/or the Amazon App, and the overhead cameras “lock onto” you and track you throughout the store. These cameras then watch anything you pickup and or put down, and create a running invoice. The moment you cross the “exit threshold” your account is charged for the running invoice.

At least that’s what they say.

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The geographic proximity gives pause as to the underlying cause of the GO formats profitability issues.

Perhaps, AJ just has a better PR spin cycle than Doug McMillon?

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This is the problem, and since Amazon had all that recorded data, including “customers picking things up and putting them down.” Including I am sure putting them in a pocket unseen to the AI they knew the shrinkage at the end of the day.

Can’t stop it in a region like that. People even run out of stores with staff watching the customers and guarding the doors.

Now other parts of the country, you would not run into that. You may see some shrinkage, but not at the volume I am sure these locations are seeing.

I feel in our community, it would not be an issue. Said the guy who tells the Home Depot checkout person, that scanned in the wrong price… “It should have been higher.” I will even come back if I get home and find an error.

Though that could be a business owner thing, yet I think it is a honor and truth above all else thing.

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Shoplifting also just doesn’t have a good deterrent. One of my favorite jobs I had was a store manager in a downtown store and our theft deterrent was customer service. They’re less likely to steal from you when you’re helping them find things and making casual chit-chat.

No number of spider wraps, locked cases, RFID tags, or see cashier for assistance BS would save us from theft. Warm humans did better every time.

When my payroll got cut and there was only one person on shift during the day, we saw annual merchandise losses close to 6 figures.

Funny, an annual associate could’ve been paid 1/3 of that and saved us a bunch of money.

We had a security guy at a different store who literally just fought theft by getting to know all of our regulars so that he could easily weed out the folks who didn’t belong.

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The geographic proximity gives pause as to the underlying cause of the GO formats profitability issues.

I think we’re talking about apples and oranges. In theory, you can’t steal from a GO store because everything you touch is automatically tracked, and anything you take is automatically charged.

On the other hand, here in Portland, there are lots of stories about increasing shoplifting problems in the news.

I’m not sure how Portland measures up against other cities, but the above article references a 26% increase in organized retail crime incidents nationwide.

Our news has lots of coverage of how much crime the city is experiencing, so it sounds like we’re worse than most.

The mall mentioned in the above story is in a nice, middle-class neighborhood. Not the type of area you’d expect to be victimized as much as others might be.

People are either stealing to sell to support drug habits, or stealing because that’s where they get the inventory for their ecommerce businesses. Several months ago, I read a story about criminals selling online, who would hit different places throughout Portland to steal. It was all very organized and they specifically targeted our area.

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Unless you are using a stolen credit card or Amazon account….

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More heartburn for Amazon over retail GO stores yesterday…

It seems New York is the only major American city to require businesses to post signs if they’re tracking customers’ biometric information, such as facial scans or fingerprints. Allegedly, Amazon only recently put up signs informing New York customers of its use of facial recognition technology, more than a year after the disclosure law went into effect.

Everybody smile and say, “Class Action!”

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Holy carp, that is alarming!

“To make this ‘Just Walk Out’ technology possible, the Amazon Go stores constantly collect and use customers’ biometric identifier information, including by scanning the palms of some customers to identify them and by applying computer vision, deep learning algorithms, and sensor fusion that measure the shape and size of each customer’s body to identify customers, track where they move in the stores, and determine what they have purchased,” it says.

I’ll be honest: I ASSumed Amazon only used the Go app data from Buyers’ phones to track people and used barcodes to track products. I had no idea the scope of data they collect and link to your identity. :flushed:

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Can we ever separate business from politics?

This thread could have gone even further off on political tangents.

The more detail we share, the more those who made assumptions get to discover how Orwell was prescient.

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The Chinese have been doing this for years in their country.

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Face recognition software is a profit center for AWS, as well as a reason for claims that Amazon discriminates because it is not as effective in discerning the the difference between some black faces.

One would expect Amazon to use it, effective or not, since it will provide real world data to be used to refine the algorithms.

So the old saying “you broke it, you bought it”, is now replaced by AMZ with “you touched it, you bought it”?

WCPGW ?

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From the You Ain’t Gonna Believe This ■■■■ Department

AMZ tracks it employees inside it’s facilities and if 2, or 3 employees gather in a spot for more than a couple of minutes, the eye in the sky rings a floor supervisors phone and alerts them that a bullshitting session needs to have a fire hose turned on it to break it up.

Ask me how I know. Or don’t. :roll_eyes:

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We are closing this topic as replies have gone off-topic. Some replies have been removed.

:warning: We expect all SAS members to respect the prohibitions against politics and irrelevant links. There are many places online to discuss these things, but those places are not here.