Neighbourhood Technology Desk: Microsoft Corp is working on technology that would eliminate cashiers and checkout lines from stores, in a nascent challenge to Amazon.com Inc’s automated grocery shop, six people familiar with the matter told Reuters. The Redmond, Wash.-based software giant is developing systems that track what shoppers add to their carts, the people say. Microsoft has shown sample technology to retailers from around the world and has had talks with Walmart Inc about a potential collaboration.
For Microsoft, becoming a strategic ally to retailers has meant big business. In addition to developing retail technologies, it ranks No. 2 behind Amazon in selling cloud services that are key to running e-commerce sites, for instance.It’s not clear how soon Microsoft would bring an automated checkout service to market, if at all, or whether its technology would be the answer retailers are looking for.