Walmart, the world’s largest retail company, sets up an AI lab inside its 50,000-square-foot store in New York, Economic Times reported on Thursday. The AI lab is known as Walmart's Intelligent Retail Lab.
The retail lab is one of the projects that come under the company’s new incubation arm. This is the second time when the company has set up an AI lab in a physical store. Earlier, the company’s Sam’s Club started a lab store sized 32,000 square feet. Customers can make payments through their smartphones just by scanning the products and hence, skip the checkout process.
The new lab in New York is equipped with thousands of cameras. The company envisions the cameras, along with other technologies such as sensors on shelves, for real-time store monitoring. The employees of the store can take quick action to replenish products or solve other issues.
The new technology was showcased to the Associated Press. The sensors will track the shelves and inform if it needs to be restocked. The sensor can recognize spills on the floor and even sense the need for opening the cash registers before queues start to form.
The retail giant’s move to foray into AI comes at a time when other players like Amazon raised the stock in the grocery segment with its acquisition of supermarket chain, Whole Foods Market two years back.
The new move by Walmart will raise its spirits in terms of innovation and hospitality.