The cash register is dead; yes, dead. That according to a Columbus Dispatch article by Anne D’Innocenzio
titled “Cash register could join
endangered-gadget list;” and it's not just the register that's going away but the people who run them.
It seems that the experience of waiting in
line to pay for your purchase is on the way out as retailers turn to clerks
with smart phones to take care of purchases on the spot. Not only that, some companies are allowing
consumers to do it themselves on their own smartphones and tablets.
Here is how D’Innocenzio describes the
motivation behind the change:
Stores like smartphones and
tablets because they take up less floor space than registers and free up
cashiers to help customers instead of being tethered to one spot. They also are
cheaper: For instance, Apple Inc.’s iPads with accessories such as credit-card
readers can cost a store $1,500, compared with $4,000 for a register. And
Americans increasingly want the same speedy service in stores that they get
The only fly in the ointment is the cash payment as
clerks are not yet in a position to make change out of their pockets. I am confident they will figure that one out
and registers will be something that our children reminisce about in their
I think it is a smart move by bricks and mortar retailers
who must create a smoother and faster retail purchase experience for shoppers
who have become comfortable with buying from the comfort of their living room couch.