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The Just Walk Out initiative, powered by generative AI at Amazon, at Fresh stores

The Just Walk Out initiative at Amazon, at Fresh stores

The Just Walk Out initiative, powered by generative AI at Amazon, at Fresh stores

A story in The Information states that Amazon is gradually removing its Just Walk Out technology from all of its Fresh food outlets in the United States. It seems that thousands of Indians added products to carts and charged consumers based on the items they left with, all part of what was purported to be an AI endeavor.

A self-checkout system with cameras and censors that created the appearance of an automated system was billed to Just Walkt Out.

"The achievement is a blend of computer vision, object recognition, sophisticated sensors, deep machine learning models, and generative AI—a kind of artificial intelligence that has lately caught the public's attention," stated Amazon in their statement.

"Our tech is able to distinguish shoppers from one another, without collecting or using any of their biometric information," stated Jon Jenkins, vice president of Just Walk Out technology. When a customer's hand comes into contact with a product on the shelf, Just Walk Out technology watches for it. When that occurs, machine learning algorithms ensure that, without requiring any particular knowledge about the individual, the right item is put to the virtual cart.

But the reality is a little less thrilling.

Just over half of Amazon Fresh locations have Just Walk Out installed, according to a Gizmodo article. By scanning a QR code upon entering the business, clients can utilize technology to bypass the checkout process entirely. Just Walk Out relied on almost 1,000 individuals in India to view and categorize movies in order to guarantee accurate checkouts, even though it appeared to be entirely automated. Simply put, the cashiers were relocated off-site, where they continued to monitor your purchases.

According to additional sources, maintaining the equipment was an extremely costly affair that involved a number of problems, such as receipts being sent out after the order was placed and incorrect orders. Essentially, a wide range of technology and off-site cashiers were required to accomplish the same task as a cashier would have done.

According to additional reports, Amazon is now thinking of implementing Dash Carts, a device that has a built-in screen and scanner in the cart.

Gizmodo was informed by an Amazon representative that the company is replacing its Just Walk Out technology with Amazon Dash Cart.

In 2016, Just Walk Out made its debut. A report in The Information stated that 700 of the 1000 Just Walk Out sales needed assistance from a human.

Users of X enjoy a field day

X users were relieved to see that Amazon's Just Walk Out feature, which perpetuated the classic Silicon Valley fallacy that AI is mostly driven by Indian laborers working abroad, required human intervention.

"Amazon billed its "Just Walk Out" stores as some sort of AI triumph," another user commented. Actually, thousands of low-paid Indian laborers added the things to your cart by hand while you shopped. How utterly depressing.

"It appears that in this instance, "A.I." stands for "Actually, we merely relocated the cashier jobs to India," another person observed.

"As AI spreads, we're going to see more of this," a third person said. "These are technologies that promote efficiency by eliminating unnecessary jobs, but they really just push people to the side so businesses can lower wages for the same position."

Amazon Responds

"We've spent a lot of time redesigning a number of our Amazon Fresh stores over the last year, offering a better overall shopping experience with more value, convenience, and selection—and so far we've seen positive results, with higher customer shopping satisfaction scores and increased purchasing," an Amazon spokesperson said in response to the report.

Customers have also told us that, although they liked the convenience of using Just Walk Out to avoid the checkout line, they also wanted to be able to quickly locate bargains and products in the area, see their receipt while they were shopping, and be aware of the total amount they had saved.

We're introducing Amazon Dash Cart, our smart shopping carts, which provide users all these advantages, including avoiding the checkout line, to give them even more convenience.

The representative went on to say: "It is untrue to say that Just Walk Out technology depends on human evaluators. Our Machine Learning data associates' main responsibility is to annotate video footage, which is essential for the ongoing development of the underlying machine learning model that underpins Just Walk Out technology.

In the tiny percentage of shopping visits where our computer vision technology is unable to conclusively identify a person's purchases, associates may also confirm the visits. Year over year, the Just Walk Out technology has grown while less human assessments are conducted.

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