I've already expressed my feelings about self checkouts.  I don't like them all that much. Polls suggest the majority of shoppers don't like them either. Enter H-E-B.  Our favorite Texas grocery store which recently ranked as the 2nd Best Grocery Store in America has a plan to change our mind about self-checkouts.  So if anyone is going to come to the rescue, it is going to be Texas' H-E-B.

They are testing a new "fast scan" system.

According to H-E-B shopper Christoken Johnson who spoke to My San Antonio.com , "All you have to do is run your basket through and the machine is going to scan everything in the basket and pay the amount ion the receipt."

Apparently Johnson saw the top secret devices in action at a location in Schertz. H-E-B is testing the program with their partners.  Johnson's review seems pretty convincing.  This self-checkout system is a game changer.  No more robotic voices saying "scan the next item" or flashing lights when the self-checkout stops working.  No more waiting endlessly for a store employee to fix the self-checkout when you're halfway through checking your items.

We talked to several local H-E-B employees who say they haven't heard when or if the new fast scan technology might be coming to West Texas, but it is just a matter of time before new technology transforms the self-checkout process.

Mashgin, based in Silicon Valley in California is already testing checkout technology that  uses artificial intelligence to identify and ring up items automatically.  This allows customers to check out in as little as ten seconds.  It takes most of us longer to find our credit cards.

Other better self-checkouts include a shopping cart system that keeps track of items as you put them in and take them out and allows you pay when you're finished shopping.  Let's just hope that H-E-B is the first to test those out also.

Ask me if I still hate self-checkouts?  I'll have to get back to you.  In the meantime, you really don't want to know my answer.

Photo: Mashgin Corp
Photo: Mashgin Corp

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