Contactless cards – are they the future of supermarkets?
Imagine a trip to the supermarket where you can whizz through the checkouts without queuing or even getting your wallet out. It might not be as far away as you think…
Head into a Co-operative supermarket next year and you could be saved the hassle of getting your cash out or punching your PIN into the card reader. Instead, a single touch of your card will be all that’s needed to pay for your shopping.
Good news if you’re a fan of London Underground’s Oyster cards. Bad news if you don’t have a Visa or Barclaycard, as they’ll be the companies issuing cards on the scheme.
Creating a cashless society?
So, it’s one more baby step towards a cashless society. Cynics say it’ll make it harder for people to budget their spending. For me, any less time spent in supermarkets can only be a good thing. What’s not to like about speeding up supermarket shopping?
Still, we’ve got a long way to go until we catch up with other futuristic supermarkets around the world.
Supermarkets go futuristic
Germany’s been leading the way for a while with its ‘Future store‘. Just zip round the shop scanning items with your mobile phone before they go in your trolley. Then one scan of your phone at the checkout to pay and you’re out. No queues, no loading your goods on and off a conveyor belt. No worries.
With that kind of scheme you’d be able to see how much money you’re spending as you go, which puts pay to any concerns about money management.
Push the theme a little bit further and you’ll discover IBM’s futuristic world, where Radio-frequency identification (RFID) is used to scan shoppers as they leave the store. Yes, that’s right – human chips. Now maybe that’s one step too far in the name of convenience.
Would you use a contactless card in a supermarket?
Yes, if it saved time (50%, 52 Votes)
No I prefer good old-fashioned service (30%, 32 Votes)
Only if the scheme is rolled-out further (20%, 21 Votes)
Total Voters: 105
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