Supermarket shopping has just gotten easier with the release of Countdown’s new Scan&Go service. Using hi-tech scales, the app can determine what customers are buying which saves them from using the standard checkout system.
Launched today at Ponsonby’s Countdown store, customers can scan, bag, and pay for their groceries all from their phone. Specially-designed scales in Countdown’s produce area use image recognition to identify which types of fruit and vegetables a customer is buying, while the app, paired with a smartphone camera can scan every product with a barcode.
Countdown’s general manager brand and CountdownX, Sally Copland, says the app was created with the aim to help make shopping easier, faster and contactless.
“Buying groceries is one of the few universal basic needs, and while online shopping continues to grow fast, the majority of Kiwis still visit a supermarket in person at least once a week, and often more.
“At the moment there’s an understandable focus on physical distancing and minimising contact, but even without that, the option to have your bags in the trolley as you shop reduces time spent shopping which is particularly handy for customers popping in and out, or if you’re like me and juggling kids who tend to get restless once it’s time to head for the checkout.”
Taking security measures into account, customers using the app will exit the store with a Q-R code receipt and through a dedicated lane. Copland says monitoring of theft will also continue in the same way as it has been with customers using the self-checkout.
“Our staff are trained to deter theft and we have security staff manning the exit. Individual customers may be stopped for spot checks to ensure items have been scanned correctly. This is a quick process where a staff member will scan a couple of items in a customer’s bag to ensure they have registered in the app and been paid for.”
Scan&Go is one of many innovations Countdown’s digital arm, CountdownX is working on to make shopping more accessible. Other initiatives include the myCountdown app, Olive the chatbot, Kai the safety robot, priority assistance online shopping service, Countdown Pharmacy online and opening the country’s first dedicated eStore in Auckland.