This spring, the company will update its Scan & Go app at Sam's Club Now, its Dallas-based testing ground for shopping tech. The update will allow shoppers to register items in their cart by simply hovering the camera over each item. In other words, you'll be able to use your phone to scan the whole item, not just the barcode.
In a video on its site, Sam's Club shows scanning an item to be 5.9 seconds faster than scanning the barcode. Multiply that by a cart full of items, and you might save a couple minutes stocking up on your favorite bulk goods. Sam's Club also plans to use the same computer vision and machine learning technology in tools used by employees, potentially shaving more time off your checkout.
This update brings the store (and its parent company Walmart) closer to the Amazon Go model, in which users scan an app to enter a store and it automatically logs what they leave with. But at Sam's Club Now, you'll still have to physically scan items and checkout with an associate before you leave. There's no word if similar tech will come to Walmart, but as the giant shelved its scan-and-go app last spring, that probably won't happen anytime soon.