Cloud Computing: Amazon Go - RFID Wins, Google Loses

Grazed from EETimes. Author: Rick Merritt.

With a simple video, Amazon has set in motion a chain of forces that could drive RFID into the mainstream and help Amazon pull further ahead of Google. It’s just one move, and nothing may come of it, but it sends out many ripples. The video creates expectations among consumers that they should be able to avoid check-out lines. It puts big grocery chains on notice that they need to figure out how to use RFID tags to create such stores before their competitors do.

Grocery stories won’t want to make this move. It will cost a lot to get items tagged, buy scanners, and figure out how to deal with inevitable conflicts when customers complain that they were charged for the wrong items. But the ones that do it will have a significant competitive advantage. However the struggles come out for grocery stores, RFID wins. It moves from use in the industrial Internet of Things to the consumer world big time...

These technical transitions can take many years. Note that the U.S. is only now starting to field smart cards, which have been used in Europe for a decade. No one wants to be the first to spend the money to swap out hardware. But Amazon’s video has created a new customer expectation of ease of use that may force the move...

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