Trying, and failing, to sneak into Amazon’s Skynet take on grocery shopping


Enlarge / “Let’s go shopping!” “No, let’s Amazon Go shopping.” “Dave, I hate your puns.” (credit: Sam Machkovech)

SEATTLE—Amazon’s foray into the world of brick-and-mortar grocery shopping has been all but confirmed for nearly a year thanks to leaks such as spotted permit applications. The rumor became reality on Monday with the announcement of Amazon Go, an experiment in grocery shopping that removes the clerks.

This is not just another idle announcement, either: the company’s pilot store is now open for business. It’s attached to one of Amazon’s headquarter buildings in Seattle’s South Lake Union neighborhood and is already stocked with food options (and a giant staff of cooks and food preparers). There’s just one catch—only full-time “blue badge” Amazon staffers can get in right now.

Never one to take “no” for an answer, I grabbed a camera and walked up to the front door with hopes that my shining blue eyes would make up for my lack of a blue badge. That didn’t work out, but I did gather a few more details while receiving death glares from staffers and security personnel.

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