Vending machines to go hi-tech
George Parthimos looks at bringing vending machines to the 21st century
How do you bring the humble vending machine into the 21st century? Easy, you add new hi-tech features!
Japanese company Sanden, in cooperation with Okaya Electronics and Intel, have developed a concept vending machine which includes a massive 65-inch full HD vertical display on the front.
The transparent touchscreen display can not only show animated graphics, but also provide product information and merchandising. It could even be a clock or an advertising billboard while waiting for the next customer.
Probably the biggest and potentially most controversial feature is the facial recognition technology, which takes an image of the customer and displays the previously purchased items from the available inventory.
What's more, it will display suggested products based on what it believes is your demographic. Spooky!!
I'd expect to see these machines find a home in the land of the rising sun sooner rather than later. After all, with vending machines providing anything from chocolate bars to women's underwear, Japan remains the undisputed king of the vending machine market.
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