Amazon has announced that it is permanently closing 8 Go convenience stores located in Seattle, New York City, and San Francisco. Already, two stores based in Seattle have been shut for quite some time. The company plans to shut 6 more stores that are currently operational (in San Francisco and New York City) by April 1.
This will leave only 21 Go stores operational after the closure. But the company clarified that it’s still pursuing efforts to open more new stores in the future.
“Like any physical retailer, we periodically assess our portfolio of stores and make optimization decisions along the way,” Amazon said in a statement. “We remain committed to the Amazon Go format, operate more than 20 Amazon Go stores across the US, and will continue to learn which locations and features resonate most with customers as we keep evolving our Amazon Go stores.”
Amazon Go stores offer a unique shopping experience as they don’t have any checkout counters or cashiers. Instead, customers use the Amazon Go app to enter the store, pick up the items they want, and simply walk out. The technology behind this experience includes computer vision, deep learning algorithms, and sensor fusion – which work together to track the items customers pick up and automatically charge them to their Amazon account as they exit the store.
In February this year, the company’s CEO Andy Jassy revealed that the company was planning to go big on a different kind of physical store – grocery stores. Amazon last year also announced that it was planning to close all its physical bookstores as it works to re-align with evolving demands in the e-commerce marketplace.