The next time you look at a tulip, reflect upon that fact that in the late 1500s, one tulip was valued at as much as an estate. The flower had been imported from the Middle East, contracted a virus that made a variety of pretty colours appear on its petals and people became convinced foreigners would pay a fortune for them.
Amazon gobsmacked the retail sector this year when it piloted small grocery stores without cashiers or checkouts. Amazon’s Seattle-based test store used computer vision, deep learning algorithms and sensor fusion, like that found in self-driving cars. Amazon branded it “Just Walk Out” technology.
Steve Jobs once said, “Packaging can be theatre, it can create a story.” Anyone who’s purchased an Apple device knows that the products are presented in the most premium way. There’s a sense of gravitas to the first opening of the box. While Jobs is correct in noting packaging’s role in the brand experience, it’s also expected to serve functional requirements. Protector, marketer, salesman, environmental steward and,increasingly, digital beacon: the humble package will play a key role in all retail channels going forward.
Westfield, MA – A vending machine in Westfield, Mass., caters to cyclists by stocking bicycle parts and supplies – including tubes, patch kits, locks and headlights – and lubricants and snacks that cyclists like. Massachusetts Live Media reports. | READ MORE
Davis, CA – At University of California Davis, one student is making it possible to get the morning-after pill from what he is calling the Plan B vending machine. Popsugar reports. | READ MORE
Vancouver – A Nova Scotia entrepreneur will bring his healthy vending company to Canada after operating in the U.S. for several years.
Vancouver – A 24/7 kiosk in Vancouver that dispenses stamps with images of Group of Seven paintings has drawn collectors who recognize that the stamps it prints are rare and available only from that machine. CBC News reports. | READ MORE
Barrie, Ont. – Members of SimCoLab, a Barrie, Ont., technology club, are looking to clone a soft drink vending machine based on the innovative Dash’N’Drink machine out of the U.S. Simcoe.com reports. | READ MORE
Littleton, MA – A vending machine is part of a system that allows the service department at a car dealership to monitor and control its distribution of shop supplies, manage technicians’ use of expensive tools, enhance the productivity of service and parts employees, eliminate lines at the parts desk and save time and money. Tire Business reports. | READ MORE
Richmond, VA– Online retailer Carvana LLC is planning to build a token-operated, 71-foot tall, eight-level, automobile-dispensing tower in western Henrico County, according to documents filed with the Henrico County Planning Department. The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports. | READ MORE
Toronto – In what may be the shape of fast-food retail to come, McDonald’s has begun rolling out self-serve kiosks at locations in Canada, but the company says the move is not a threat to job security. The Huffington Post Canada reports. | READ MORE
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