Walmart patents in-store listening system
In December 2018 Walmart was granted a patent for a new listening system for capturing and analysing sounds in shopping facilities. The system would be able to compare rustling shopping bags and cash register beeps to detect theft, monitor employee interactions with customers, and even listen to what customers are saying about products. The company said it had no plans to deploy the system in its retail stores. However, the patent shows that, like the systems in use in Amazon's cashier-less Go retail stores, retailers are increasingly thinking about surveillance systems as part of their future retail plans.
Writer: Stefan Etienne
Publication: The Verge
Publication date: 2018-12-21