Cashier-less checkout systems are seen by many as the next big trend in the retail and grocery sector. In August, a Guangzhou-based technology firm launched Motao Box, a wine store without a cashier, in the mainland market. The service is coming to Hong Kong next year.
Deploying technology powered by artificial intelligence and big data, Motao Box allows customers to scan the QR code displayed on the door to enter the cellar after online registration. When a customer holds up a wine bottle to a nearby screen, the screen will instantly display relevant information about the product, such as its origin and flavor, via image recognition technology. The customer can then use the QR code payment technology to complete the purchase.
The firm plans to locate Motao Box stores in high-traffic indoor locations such as restaurants, hotels, shopping malls, offices and golf courses.
Motao Box currently only supports WeChat Pay as a payment option. But as the service is entering Hong Kong next year, the firm plans to add Alipay HK and credit cards to its payment options.
Fung Zhen-hong, chairman and president of Motao Box, told the Hong Kong Economic Journal that wine sales channels are fragmented and consumers may have limited understanding of the various wines on the shelf.
Fung, who has been involved in the wine industry for many years, revealed that his firm has invested over 20 million yuan (US$2.89 million) in research and development for the project.
He said his firm aims to corner 30 percent of the wine sales in mainland China, and plans to go global in 2020.
This article appeared in the Hong Kong Economic Journal on Nov 6
Translation by Ben Ng
[Chinese version 中文版]
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