Starting this week, malls in Atlanta; Boulder, CO; and Santa Rosa, CA will be the first three to house new automated retail kiosks for Sony products. The machines will house CE wares such as batteries, MP3 players and digital cameras, as well as Sony DVD and CD titles, all available to consumers at the swipe of a credit or debit card.
The experiment comes via Sony’s partnership with Zoom Systems, who recently distributed iPod vending machines to hotels and airports (and soon 180 Macy’s stores). The four-to-eight foot wide machines boast touch screen displays that show trailers, music videos or product information and a robotic arm to grab whatever device the customer selects.
Among other advantages, considerably lowered overhead would make this an enticing alternative to a staffed retail kiosk, depending upon how this trial run works out. The downside would be sales lost on Sony products in local retailers, a contingency Sony will monitor closely.
David Thomas, CEO at Evident, is an accomplished cybersecurity entrepreneur. He has a history of introducing innovative technologies, establishing them in the market, and driving growth – with each early-stage company emerging as the market leader.