What just happened? Amazon's physical retail team on Tuesday introduced a new contactless method for people to interact with wireless scanners at grocery stores, sporting events and even at work.
Dubbed Amazon One, the system allows people to use their unique palm print to pay for purchases at the store, present a loyalty card, enter a stadium or clock in at work.
Amazon said the service was built with security in mind, utilizing custom algorithms and hardware to capture a person's unique palm signature.
Amazon One will first be deployed at select Amazon Go stores, positioned at the front gate and used as an alternative means of entry. Those interested in trying it out can do so at two of Amazon's Go stores in Seattle: the original shop at 7th & Blanchard and the location in South Lake Union at 300 Boren Avenue.
The e-commerce giant said it takes less than a minute to get set up to use Amazon One at the store, noting that you don't need an Amazon account to sign up or use it. A mobile phone number and a credit card will suffice.
The first step is to insert your credit card. Next, hover you palm over the device and follow the prompts to associate that card with the unique palm signature being built for you by our computer vision technology in real time. You'll have the option to enroll with just one palm or both. And that's it---you're now signed up. Once you're enrolled, to use Amazon One to enter these Amazon Go stores, you'll just hold your palm above the Amazon One device at entry for about a second or so, and be on your way. It's that simple.
Amazon said it chose palm recognition due to it being considered more private than some other biometric alternatives. It also requires a user to make the intentional gesture of holding their palm over a device to use. Plus, it is contactless, which is convenient in these current times of heightened sanitation and health concerns.