Korean retailer pilots unmanned convenience store that uses face recognition for entry and payments

GS25 brings facial recognition to new shop — Korea JoongAng Daily — “Most convenience stores without a human cashier use barcodes to identify the products. GS25’s new system instead identifies an item by its packaging and weight. This allows customers to simply place items on the table before paying using facial recognition or a credit card. The company says it takes only about a second for the system to recognize five items at once, whereas with the conventional barcode system it would take 15 seconds to scan them one by one.”




Macy’s brings mobile self-checkout to department stores

Macy’s to add mobile checkout to all stores by year’s end — CNBC — “The platform allows shoppers to scan barcodes on items (apparel, home goods, etc) with their phones, as they add merchandise to their baskets in stores. Relevant discounts and rewards will also be applied, via a shopper’s loyalty account, throughout. When customers are finished shopping, they will head to a special counter for mobile checkout, where an associate will remove security tags and make sure the number of items scanned adds up to those paid for. Then, they’re ready to go.”


Amazon tests its own QR codes

Amazon is experimenting with its own QR code style ‘SmileCodes’ — Techcrunch — “Amazon has apparently been testing these codes in pop-up shops and Amazon Lockers in Europe for a few weeks now, but the company says these codes will make their US debut in a few different magazines (Cosmopolitan and Seventeen) come February… It’s probably safe to assume we’ll eventually see Amazon tinker with putting these codes on another massively common canvas: its own boxes.”


China’s central bank to begin testing QR code payments registration and settlement regulations from April

China’s central bank to standardize QR code payment — Xinhua — “The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) announced plans Wednesday to regulate QR code payment to contain risks arising from the popular service. Payment institutions must obtain proper permits to offer barcode-based payment services, according to a document released by the PBOC. Both banks and non-banking payment institutions must channel cross-bank transactions involving barcodes through the clearing system of the PBOC or other legal clearing houses… The standards will be put into trial use from April.”


Target adds mobile payments, coupons and rewards to mobile app

Target launches Wallet in the Target app: A faster, easier way to pay and save — Target — “With Wallet, guests can pay using their Target REDcard and save with Cartwheel — all in a single scan of their phones at checkout… Wallet combines digital savings — Cartwheel offers and Weekly Ad coupons — with the 5% REDcard discount. And, coming soon, guests also will be able to store and redeem Target GiftCards with Wallet.”


UK government unveils plans for smart ticketing on railways

Connecting people: A strategic vision for rail — Department for Transport — “Our aim for 2018 is that, by the end of the year, both ITSO and barcode tickets will be accepted for travel on almost all of the network… We also expect much of the industry to offer smart cards that can be held in digital ‘wallets’ on mobile phones… We expect in the medium-term wider use of mobile phone-based ticketing, and in the longer-term to explore options that don’t require a physical check of tickets.”


New interactive technology to trace your food from field to fork

New interactive technology to trace your food from field to fork — Soil Association — “Using three types of labels and identifiers; barcode, QR code and NFC tags, shoppers simply scan or hover their smart phones to find out the unique journey behind their food. This includes information about its origin, ingredients, and any special attributes such as organic, gluten-free, dairy-free etc. Photos of the product’s creation, as well as farmer or producer profiles can be viewed too.”


eMarketer releases latest estimates for US proximity mobile payments

eMarketer releases latest estimates for US proximity mobile payments — eMarketer — “eMarketer estimates the value of US proximity mobile payment transactions will total US$49.29 billion in 2017, up 78.1% from last year… The average annual spend per proximity mobile payment user in the US will reach US$1,026 in 2017, surpassing US$1,000 for the first time. That figure will continue to grow through 2021, when it will reach US$2,646.”


Walmart deploying tech that lets in-store shoppers check out — on their own

Walmart deploying tech that lets in-store shoppers check out — on their own — Chain Store Age — “The free app allows members to scan merchandise bar codes as they move throughout store aisles and add merchandise to their shopping carts. The app also keeps a running total and itemized list of merchandise and prices, and lets shoppers checkout directly through their smartphone.”


In China, Amazon’s ‘store of the future’ is already open

In China, Amazon’s ‘store of the future’ is already open — Tech In Asia — “This is a typical Bingobox store… A shopper opens the door – and registers with the startup – through WeChat, the popular messaging app… The customer has to scan each item’s barcode. And then pay on their phone, either via WeChat or Alibaba’s mobile wallet app, Alipay. As you leave the store, a camera checks you’re taking out only the stuff you paid for.”



KT introduces ‘mother of all credit cards’

KT introduces ‘mother of all credit cards’ — Korea Herald — “Dubbed ‘Clip Card’ the device looks like credit and debit cards issued by financial institutions, but it has a 1.3-inch display on the surface of the card that enables users to register all their cards, which are displayed in barcodes… The KT platform is compatible with all types of credit cards regardless of card companies and financial institutions, and with any operating systems.”



Say hello to Spotify Codes

Say hello to Spotify Codes — Spotify — “We are introducing Spotify Codes, a brand new way for users to share any track, artist, album, or playlist available on Spotify, as easily as taking a picture… They also present an innovative and exciting new way for artists, labels and brands to instantly engage with fans through Spotify.”






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