It's a foregone conclusion that robots will continue to replace humans in the job field but did you ever expect your employment could be replaced by a smartphone? That's exactly what's taking place at Sweden's first unstaffed convenience store as customers can drop in, buy their goods and be on their way without any human involvement.
The store is the brainchild of Robert Ilijason who said he came up with the idea one night after trying to find a supermarket that was open so he could buy baby food for his screaming toddler.
As the Associated Press details, the 39-year-old IT professional now operates a 24-hour shop with no cashier. Customers just need to download the store's app to get started. The app will grant them the ability to unlock the store's otherwise locked door.
Once inside, customers can select from an assortment of basic goods including bread, milk, sugar, canned food, diapers and other products you'd expect to find in a small convenience store. The shop measures just 480 square feet so there's not really a lot of room for non-essential incidentals.
Customers are billed for their purchases via monthly invoice.
Tobacco products and medicines aren't offered due to the risk of theft and alcohol is banned from being sold in convenience stores in the country. For everything else, a series of security cameras keep a close eye on shoppers to deter shoplifters. Ilijason said the app will send him a text message if the front door remains open for more than eight seconds or if someone tries to break in.
Would you be interested in shopping at a store of this nature? Would the convenience of not having to wait in line trump the fact that only certain products are sold and there's nobody on hand to offer assistance? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.
Image courtesy Jan Olsen, AP Photo