Carrefour has opened its first robotic pick-up point in Paris: the fully automatic pedestrian "drive" works completely unmanned, looks like a large machine and would be a first for the chain.
Two collection machines
From now on, an unmanned collection point can be found in Paris for groceries ordered online. Carrefour has a first: a pedestrian pick-up point was previously located at the same location, but it has now been replaced by two large, cooled machines.
An innovative aspect is that employees are no longer required to deliver the packages: they are in compartments of the machine. Customers can open it with a QR code, but still have to go to a separate freezer machine (where the temperature is -18 degrees) if they have also ordered frozen items.
Previous test failed
The system, developed by the Polish company Retail Robotics, could store up to 94 orders, according to trade magazine LSA, and allow two to three people to pick up their groceries at the same time. However, those numbers would currently be a bit more limited because it is a first test version. Employees will also be present in the first six months to guide customers.
The pick-up machine may be new to Carrefour, but the idea is not completely unseen. In the heart of Paris, competitor Intermarché previously tested an automated collection point, which had to be available 24 hours a day. However, the machine was unsuccessful and the experiment was discontinued after a year. In today's corona times, however, contactless systems, including vending machines, are gaining ground and the initiative may therefore have an extra chance of success.
 Retail Detail, Carrefour lanceert robot-afhaalpunt