Technology is in the process of completely transforming all aspects of 4 industries – construction, medicine, retail, and transport – with a significant reduction in the need for human labor. Here is the impact on the Retail Industry:
- Product manufacture (including food preparation) is being automated, using such technologies as robotics, CAD, and additive (3D or 4D) manufacturing. Many products are being customized to specific customer specifications.
- The supply chain that transports products to warehouses and onward to stores or customer locations will be automated by the use of autonomous robots, cars, trucks, trains and ships – with tracking based on paperless blockchains.
- Fully-automated warehouses are already in use, which replace workers with robots and conveyor belts to stock and retrieve products, and to fill orders
- Retail stores are changing their primary functions from the traditional look-touch-buy to look-touch-pickup (soon with the use of augmented reality technology), with ordering and payment via the internet. For groceries, look-touch-buy is being achieved without cashiers or sales staff or couriers. Most products sold on the internet will be delivered directly to customers’ homes by autonomous systems (vehicles or drones or robots).
- Customer support is using AI to handle automatically the majority of queries and concerns, while in-store support (including restaurant wait staff and hosts) will be provided by robots.
The number of jobs in the retailing process is being significantly reduced. There is already limited need for cashiers, sales staff, and warehouse workers. Fast food workers and restaurant wait staff will be replaced by robots. Supply chain workers (such as truck drivers and dispatchers and document handlers) will no longer be needed. This is already starting in a few places, but, as the cost of the new technologies drop (which will happen at an accelerating rate), expect much of this to be standard in 5-10 years (and earlier if the minimum wage keeps increasing).
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... AND LEARN MORE FROM THESE ADDITIONAL VIDEOS
4 trends that are changing the way we shop (AI/Retail – 2017-07 – ZDNet)
Future use of robots in the home(Robotics/Home – 2018-04 – ZDNet)
6 more cashier-free Amazon Go stores could be coming in 2018 (AI/Stores – 2018-02 – TechRepublic)
What it’s like to shop at an Amazon Go store (AI/Automated Store – 2018-01 – ZDNet)
REVIEW THESE INFORMATIVE ARTICLES - AND READ THOSE THAT INTEREST YOU
US grocery giant Kroger has started making completely autonomous deliveries (Retail/Courier - 2018-12 - MIT Technology Review)
Postmates has launched a delivery robot that will bring lunch to your door (Retail/Delivery - 2018-12 - MIT Technology Review)
On-line order fulfillment centre can process 65,000 orders/week (Retail/Grocery - 2018-12 - PC Mag)
A robotic bartender who serves drinks ordered through a phone app (Retail/Restaurants - 2018-12 - Reuters)
Robots are cooking in fast food restaurants (Retail/Restaurants - 2018-12 - BBC)
Burger restaurant has fully-automated kitchen (Retail/Restaurants - 2018-12 - BBC Future)
Amazon and Walmart add more robots, but insist they won’t terminate jobs (Retail - 2018-12 - FastCompany)
Amazon's Go stores will use biometrics instead of cashiers to perform checkout (Retail/Facial Recognition - 2018-11 - Biometric Update)
Alibaba's Tmall and Ford have a vehicle 'vending machine (Retail/Automobile - 2018-11 - ZDNet)
Providing customers with any groceries, anytime, and anywhere in U.S. (Retail/Food Services - 2018-11 - MIT Technology Review)
7-Eleven is piloting cashier-less stores (Retail/Cashier-less stores - 2018-11 - TechCrunch)
Amazon is hiring fewer workers this holiday season, a sign that robots are replacing them (Retail - 2018-11 - Quartz)
The next big restaurant chain may not own any kitchens (Retail/Food Services - 2018-10 - TechCrunch)
New York City’s first Amazon Go cashierless store will open near the World Trade Center (Retail/Cashierless store - 2018-10 - Recode)
Amazon may open 3,000 cashierless conveniene stores by 2021 (Retail/Food - 2018-09 - Bloomberg)
Zippin is the first Amazon Go rival to open an automated checkout store (Retail - 2018-08 - FastCompany)
AI supporting buying decisions decimate the number of buyers needed (Retail/Buyers - 2018-07 - TechRepublic)
San Francisco is too expensive for restaurant wait staff to live in (Retail/Restaurants - 2018-06 - New York Times)
AI is automating food preparation (Retail/Food service - 2018-06 - TechRepublic)
50,000 Las Vegas workers are ready to go on strike over fears of robots taking their jobs (Retail/Gambling - 2018-06 - Gizmodo)
Product purchasing at Amazon done better by robots (Retail/Purchasing - 2018-06 - MIT Technology Review)
Robot is chef at a new burger joint (Retail/Food service - 2018-06 - Fast Company)
A British supermarket is using more than 1,000 robots to make on-line grocery shopping faster (Retail-Automated Warehouse/Robotics - 2018-05 - The Verge)
Ocado, a British online-only supermarket, has created a warehouse, involving a hive-grid-machine with over one thousand robots, each the size and shape of a washing machine, that lift, move, and sort groceries. The operation will process 3.5 million items or around 65,000 orders every week.
Food waste management company uses blockchain to track food waste from restaurant to the needy (Retail/Food - 2018-05 - Fast Company)
11 jobs teens are about to lose to robots (Robotics - 2018-05 - ZDNet)
Target uses AR for makeup shopping on-line and in stores (AI - Augmented Reality/Cosmetics - 2018-05 - TechRepublic)
Amazon to bring automated stores to Chicago, San Francisco as AI replaces human cashiers (AI - 2018-05 - TechRepublic)
IBM partners with jewelry industry on blockchain supply chain project (Retail/Jewellery - 2018-04 - Coindesk)
Farmer’s Fridge operates more than 100 unmanned fresh food vending units in Chicago and Milwaukee (AI/Food - 2018-04 - FoodManagement)
Farmer’s Fridge offers conveniently-accessed fresh, wholesome meals in over 100 unmanned fresh food vending units across the Chicago and Milwaukee metro regions. The units are maintained by the company, which monitors and restocks them daily, with any unsold product donated to community members in need. Selections include salads, sandwiches, bowl meals, and snacks – with everything scratch-made using seasonal ingredients from local partners whenever possible.