Tags: sweden | unmanned | store | viken

Sweden 'Unmanned' Store Has Customers Scan Items With Their Phones

Image: Sweden 'Unmanned' Store Has Customers Scan Items With Their Phones
Swedish IT entrepreneur Robert Ilijason shows how to use a cell phone to scan a purchase at the no-staff, app shop in the southern Sweden village of Viken in this photo dated Jan. 27, 2016. (AP Photo/Jan Olsen)

By    |   Wednesday, 02 Mar 2016 02:14 PM

Sweden’s first unmanned store opened in January, offering customers 24-hour access to essentials in the small town of Viken.

Customers use their cell phones to unlock the door and scan their purchases, The Associated Press reported.

Robert Ilijason, a 39-year-old IT specialist, opened the unstaffed convenience store after a late-night scramble to find an open supermarket where he could buy baby food, the AP said.

"My ambition is to spread this idea to other villages and small towns," Ilijason said. "It is incredible that no one has thought of his before."

The store carries such staples as milk, bread, sugar, canned food, and diapers. Customers download an app to scan their purchases and then receive a monthly invoice.

Surveillance cameras deter theft, and Ilijason gets text messages if someone tries to break.

The Daily Mail compared the concept to unmanned gyms. The BankID system of identifying customers allows only those without credit issues to enter the store.

Customers can make suggestions about what is stocked at the store. Business has been rather slow, but Ilijason attributed that to the store's location in a small town with two other shops already in operation.

“My store has been successful in the dimension I care about; it's worked perfectly from a tech perspective. And to me that was the important part,” he said.

Some customers have praised the convenience and lack of lines. Others, particularly elderly residents, are slower to embrace the technology.

Business Insider noted that similar concepts have been introduced in the United States, including ShelfX, which allows customers to make purchases without staff by swiping their credit cards, and a North Dakota coffee shop, which operates on the honor system.

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Sweden’s first unmanned store opened in January, offering customers 24-hour access to essentials in the small town of Viken.
sweden, unmanned, store, viken
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2016-14-02
Wednesday, 02 Mar 2016 02:14 PM
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