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submitted 3 weeks ago by Stopthatgirl7 to c/technology

Amazon is phasing out its checkout-less grocery stores with “Just Walk Out” technology, first reported by The Information Tuesday. The company’s senior vice president of grocery stores says they’re moving away from Just Walk Out, which relied on cameras and sensors to track what people were leaving the store with.

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[-] [email protected] 182 points 3 weeks ago

According to The Information, 700 out of 1,000 Just Walk Out sales required human reviewers as of 2022. This widely missed Amazon’s internal goals of reaching less than 50 reviews per 1,000 sales.

Lmao.

[-] eager_eagle 83 points 3 weeks ago* (last edited 3 weeks ago)

idk...

According to The Information, 700 out of 1,000 Just Walk Out sales required human reviewers as of 2022. This widely missed Amazon’s internal goals of reaching less than 50 reviews per 1,000 sales. Amazon called this characterization inaccurate, and disputes how many purchases require reviews.

if Amazon wasn't the source of this number, where is it coming from?

[-] schmidtster 20 points 3 weeks ago

Amazon was using people to train the model, so at the starts it would be 100%, but eventually the goal would be to get near zero, maybe the average was 70% but when the ended it was near 40%?

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[-] [email protected] 31 points 3 weeks ago

Goes to show the true state of the art for AI right now

[-] Harbinger01173430 8 points 3 weeks ago

Meanwhile, my college machine learning model made to recognize three types of flower by sepal length: 92% success rate.

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[-] [email protected] 29 points 3 weeks ago* (last edited 3 weeks ago)

This feels so creepy to, being watched spending your money by slaves on the other side of the globe, and Amazon pretending it to be automated !

[-] isles 9 points 3 weeks ago

Amazon pretending it to be automated !

Is it surprising for a company running a service called Mechanical Turk?

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[-] graymess 10 points 3 weeks ago

Incredible. Their "AI" is just a bunch of people watching cameras in India.

[-] [email protected] 7 points 3 weeks ago

AI stands for Actually India

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[-] Garbanzo 73 points 3 weeks ago

The Amazon near me has a "Just Fuck Off" policy. They redecorated the old Toys R Us building a few years ago and then never bothered to open the store.

[-] [email protected] 42 points 3 weeks ago

That immediately reminded me the story of the Mechanical Turk. Check the link for further info - to keep it short both are ways to hide human labour behind alleged automation.

[-] ccunning 35 points 3 weeks ago

You linked to the original Mechanical Turk. Perhaps you already know this but Amazon actually runs an Mechanical Turk service:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amazon_Mechanical_Turk

[-] [email protected] 10 points 3 weeks ago

You linked to the original Mechanical Turk.

Yup, that's intended. The original Mechanical Turk was a con, just like Amazon's "just walk out" service.

[-] [email protected] 10 points 3 weeks ago* (last edited 3 weeks ago)

The Amazon's Mechanical Turk was never a con. It's been known for a very long time that it's a way to outsource human tasks on a large scale cheaply. Like, a very long time. I think I first heard about it like 12 years ago?

Unless you mean the way it exploits poor countries for cheap labor. I wouldn't call that a con, but it is fucked.

[-] [email protected] 23 points 3 weeks ago* (last edited 3 weeks ago)

By "original Mechanical Turk", I am clearly referring to the chess player inside a box. It was a con because the system was presented as an automaton, when it is simply human labour.

And I am calling Amazon's "just walk out" service also a con because it was touted as automatic, even if also being mostly human labour.

I am not calling "Amazon's Mechanical Turk" a con. It is exploitative, as you said, but it is not a con. People know that it is human labour, and Amazon does not try to hide it.

Is this clear now?

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[-] [email protected] 13 points 3 weeks ago

He means the namesake, not the web service from the last 20 years.

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[-] [email protected] 9 points 3 weeks ago

I believe it was Molly White (@[email protected] ) who said that every AI idea like this will eventually be revealed to be a mechanical turk. So far she seems right on point.

[-] [email protected] 31 points 3 weeks ago

It's a shame this isn't working out, I was really hoping it would turn out to be a better way of doing self-checkouts.

The little convenience store on my way to work is nice, but I guess it falls apart in a larger store situation.

[-] [email protected] 25 points 3 weeks ago

What is preventing someone from just walking into a random store with no Amazon account and walking out with stuff?

[-] [email protected] 29 points 3 weeks ago

What is preventing someone from doing that at Walmart?…

[-] [email protected] 22 points 3 weeks ago* (last edited 3 weeks ago)

Not much. Employees don't give a fuck and if they did, they would probably get fired for trying to stop a thief.

Actually, many places where I live are scaling back self-checkout. I suspect it's because the geniuses who tried to save a buck by getting rid of tellers didn't realize they would lose more from theft. (It's amazing how many people don't give two fucks about shareholder profits, actually.)

[-] [email protected] 7 points 3 weeks ago

Yeah that was my point. :P

A thief is a thief, someone willing to steal from a store covered from top to bottom in cameras and sensors is going to be willing to steal from just about anywhere.

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[-] [email protected] 17 points 3 weeks ago

I don't know about Walmart but I heard Target will facial recognize you and deliberately wait across multiple trips until you have stolen enough to make it grand theft before taking action.

[-] isles 9 points 3 weeks ago

Is that tracking distributed across stores or do I have license to steal $9999 from each one?

[-] RGB3x3 14 points 3 weeks ago

Probably the amount stolen within the same state. But once you're committing crimes across state lines, you've got bigger problems on your hands.

And yes, they definitely share data across their whole company.

[-] CoggyMcFee 6 points 3 weeks ago

Let us know what you find out

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[-] glitch1985 17 points 3 weeks ago

The one I went to had a turnstile after you walk though the front door so you needed to scan the code from the app.

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[-] hark 25 points 3 weeks ago

I remember when this was going to be the future of physical retail and that it was part of the massive loss of jobs we would supposedly experience due to full automation. It reminds me of the hype surrounding AI and the overestimation of its capabilities and underestimation of its problems.

[-] Furbag 25 points 3 weeks ago

"Just walk out" was a cool idea, but I'm not sure the way they tried to implement it would have ever been successful even if they had perfected the technology. The fact that they tried to disguise it as a fully automated system when they had a team of thousands of people overseas analyzing the footage is disturbing. I like the idea of just having the scanner in the basket much better. It's still more convenient/efficient than a checkout line or a kiosk and it helps you keep track of your total balance.

I've never actually been to one of these stores. They seem pretty scarce.

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[-] LordCrom 20 points 3 weeks ago

All this complexity and expensive tech just to avoid paying a couple of cashier's and bagboys. It amazes me

[-] postmateDumbass 11 points 3 weeks ago

But the guy with the MBA had a graph showing it pays for itself in 38 years! (46 if you add consulting fees.)

[-] [email protected] 15 points 3 weeks ago* (last edited 3 weeks ago)

Joke's on them, I was already Just Walking Out without going to the checkout 😎

[-] venusaur 12 points 3 weeks ago* (last edited 3 weeks ago)

It worked really smoothly for me…the one time I went cuz it was such a depressing experience. Don’t get me wrong tho. I love self checkout. Amazon store sucks.

[-] ripcord 8 points 3 weeks ago

What made it depressing for you?

[-] venusaur 8 points 3 weeks ago

It just feels sad in there. The colors are sad, the products are boring, the cameras all over are dystopian. Even though there were other people there, it felt isolating. Too sterile.

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[-] [email protected] 11 points 3 weeks ago

This is the best summary I could come up with:


Amazon is phasing out its checkout-less grocery stores with “Just Walk Out” technology, first reported by The Information Tuesday.

The technology allows customers to skip checkout altogether by scanning a QR code when they enter the store.

Though it seemed completely automated, Just Walk Out relied on more than 1,000 people in India watching and labeling videos to ensure accurate checkouts.

However, the spokesperson acknowledged these associates validate “a small minority” of shopping visits when AI can’t determine a purchase.

Amazon Fresh, the e-commerce giant’s grocery store first launched in 2007, has just over 40 locations around the United States.

Amazon’s push away from expensive tests like Just Walk Out may be a sign the company is looking to further expand its presence as a supermarket.


The original article contains 512 words, the summary contains 126 words. Saved 75%. I'm a bot and I'm open source!

[-] flames5123 9 points 3 weeks ago

Damn… I go to a corner store Amazon Go almost every time I go into the office for a flavored seltzer. They have dog treats and my my dog loves going there every time.

I hope this is one of the convenience stores that it keeps open.

It was weird that last year they reversed the way you pay, making you pay/scan your code on the way out. So backwards to the “just walk out” motto. They went back on it less than 6 months later.

[-] ExfilBravo 14 points 3 weeks ago

If they lose even a cent doing something new its right back to the old way every time. Can't let the share holders down I guess.

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this post was submitted on 02 Apr 2024
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