Convenience stores have become increasingly, well… convenient, thanks to the inclusion of various modern technologies such as cashless/contactless payments and automated services. One such franchise, 7-Eleven, is taking it a step further by introducing holographic touch screen self-checkout registers to six of its stores in Tokyo, Japan.
Almost like it was straight out of a sci-fi movie, each register features an embedded display that projects an image of a touch screen to customers. Well, to be specific, there’s no actual “touching” involved as the user is actually interacting with the interface that is “floating” in the air. 7-Eleven Japan says that the introduction and trial of this service at the initial six stores in Tokyo aims to reduce the risk of coronavirus infection, on top of reducing the workload of staff.
The holographic interface and cash register, known as Digi POS (point of sale), is developed by a six-company collaboration that consists of 7-Eleven Japan, Toshiba Tec, Asukanet Development, Kanda Kogyo Development, Mitsui Chemicals Development, and Mitsui Bussan Plastic. As pointed out by Soranews24, the technologies, as well as those similar to it, are still rare and are mainly used for digital signages, or for reception services in hotels and offices.
Based on the video uploaded by 7-Eleven Japan, the holographic screen is only clearly visible when you’re directly facing towards the display, and is pretty responsive when interacted with. Using the service is pretty straightforward: customers are first required to scan the item(s) they wish to purchase, and then choose a preferred cashless payment service via the interface. Also seen in the video is the option to add in products offered by the store’s other automated services such as coffee dispensers and so on.
7-Eleven Japan added that the new holographic self-checkout system is currently limited to in-store products, excluding items such as alcohol, cigarettes, stamps, postcards, courier delivery services, bill payments, cash vouchers, and top-up services. So far, the company has not revealed any plans of introducing the technology to its stores in other regions.