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New Netto branch is “Europe’s largest autonomous supermarket”

The discounter Netto has opened the “largest autonomous supermarket in Europe”. The smart technology does almost everything automatically.

Shopping is becoming an increasingly digital experience. This is not just because online shopping has become the norm. More and more retailers are relying on autonomous shopping options – such as self-service checkouts or scanners that allow customers to register their items while shopping.

There are now even markets where cash registers are no longer needed and customers can scan and pay for everything using their smartphone. To do this, you usually have to register, download an app and provide your personal account information for the payment process.

Netto is now taking a different approach. A new branch that opened on January 9th in Regensburg, Bavaria, enables completely autonomous shopping in Germany for the first time – without check-in and even without scanning. As it says on the discounter’s website, the branch is the “largest autonomous supermarket in Europe”.

Netto: New branch has automated almost everything

But how exactly does it work? In fact, customers don’t have to do that much work themselves. When you enter the branch, you don’t have to register or check in beforehand – a smart camera system records everything. You simply take a basket or shopping cart and start packing it full.

The smart technology “assigns the removed products to the respective customers and creates the individual shopping carts and purchase amounts in real time,” according to Netto’s website.

Even loose fruit and vegetables are “automatically weighed and transferred directly to the receipt” as soon as they are taken from the shelf. Weight and price are then “displayed directly on the digital display of the respective product shelf,” explains Netto.

Discounter relies on hybrid checkout model

Once you have completed your shopping and are ready to pay, you can go to the “Fast Exit Terminal”. The complete shopping cart and the total then appear on the display. The items no longer need to be scanned separately. You can pay by card, ApplePay, GooglePay or Netto app. You will then receive your receipt.

In addition to the fast exit terminals, the branch also has normal service and self-service checkouts. This hybrid model is intended to offer all customers the “best possible shopping experience”.

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