Will Smart Vending Machines be Coming Soon?
Smart Vending Machines are popping up all over the place. Japan has really led the way with their huge assortment of vending machines. They have machines that can vend a variety of items from fresh produce to gym shoes. They also have the latest “smart” technologies on their vending machines. Such as interactive touch screens and artificial intelligence. They usually innovate in vending ahead of most of the other areas of the globe. The link to the internet that some of these “Smart” vending machines have allows them to interact with their operators and with customers in new and fun ways.
The Internet of Things
Items that you wouldn’t normally think of as being connected to the internet, are now being connected. There are now smart fridges, smart plugs, smart watches and smart cars. Alexa and Google allow people access to internet content through their voices. The Internet of Things or IoT, as coined by Kevin Ashton in 1999, has become a very hot topic. Putting intelligence into dumb objects is becoming more and more common. Our world has been changing at an ever increasing pace. The public wants more integration. Vending is a great place to innovate.
What does a “Smart” Vending Machine offer?
Most “Smart” vending machines offer interactive touch screens. Using their fingers, customers can connect with the vending machine. Larger viewing screens are becoming places where customers can see information and advertisements in full color and high resolution. Generally, smart vending machines will offer ways to upload photos, descriptions, nutritional information, QR codes, or informational videos that can all be linked to the products. Operators can even show promotional videos while the machine is in standby.
Bridging the gap between the digital and the physical, “Smart” vending machines boast AI learning capabilities. Using the vending machine’s link to its credit card reader, the machine can predict how much stock you need. Our most popular platform for this is through the NAYAX dashboard. You would pull your pick list on a Thursday, but maybe you don’t stock the machine until Wednesday the following week. The predictive AI can add inventory to your pick list so it will reflect what will actually be needed six days later based on past sales patterns. That is one “Smart” Vending Machine!
Additionally, Smart Vending Machines come integrated with all of the latest payment technologies. Depending on the operator’s preference, the machine can use a NAYAX Touch credit card reader to swipe cards, insert chip cards, accept NFC phone payments, Google Wallet, Apple Pay, and Samsung Pay. If anything new appears on the market, these new smart vending machines can handle it. There are technologies available that allow you to link apps to your vending machines. Some smart vending machines in Japan play interactive games with their customers inviting even more interest in what they are selling. The latest smart vending machines also offer a form of age verification, allowing customers to purchase products that are restricted by age. This could be alcoholic beverages or marijuana products.
Discount Vending Is at the Cutting Edge
Having the technology to connect to the internet allows so many capabilities in these smart vending machines and we’re really just scratching the surface. As technology advances, we will see even greater variety and innovation. Coin-operated vending machines may become dinosaurs as we move on to a new tech-savvy era of vending. At the Discount Vending Store, we are ready to enter this new era. We have the opportunity to offer our OMNI series smart vending machines to customers around the U.S. Give us a call today to find out more about these intelligent, innovative vending machines.