Vending machines are a common sight in Japan. Many of them do not only sell drinks but several different products. People normally use vending machines every day but to use one, you need to have coins on you.
When you’re rushing around, it can be a hassle if you lack loose change. This is the reason why Acure (アキュア), a vending machine company, has recently introduced the first ever coinless vending machine! This machine can also take orders from their customers via smartphones, which in turn allows people to send free drinks to a friend in the country.
Vending machines started appearing in Japan in the 1950s. It started with drinks machines. Over the years, almost anything imaginable could be purchased using the machine. Though convenience stores can also be found across the country, vending machines serve a very useful purpose when it comes to rural areas and round-the-clock retails.
Though vending machines keep evolving and adding products over time, it becomes a challenge for engineers in meeting the demands of the consumer. This is something that motivates them to make things easier for people considering several factors. As of now, the vast majority is still concentrated on drink machines. There are other vending machines which are quite unusual, sellings items such as fishing bait or even bras!
The new coinless vending machine is as simple as it looks. There is no place for you to insert any cash or coins into the machine; you just need to scan the built-in QR reader with your phone. This allows customers to make prepaid purchases remotely. Firstly, you’ll need to download the mobile app, Acure Pass, in order to generate the QR codes. The app is available on both iOS and Android. After downloading, you can complete the registration process by registering your credit card information. This will allow you to see the drink menu popping up so you can select your items on the screen.
The perk of using this app is that it will include discounts once you subscribe to the service. With every purchase of a drink, you are granted a point. Having thirty points will get you a free drink. You can choose from two options before purchasing your drinks: single, one-time purchase or purchase a drink on a regular basis. If you’d like to treat your friends, you can send them QR codes so they can also enjoy the fun of picking up a free drink. Who doesn’t want one, right? This is also a great way to earn points which one can use for free drinks in the future.
These coinless vending machines are a quest to attract smartphone users so they keep coming back for more. They are also targeting foreign people in the hopes that they will use vending machines as much as possible. Linking the smartphones to these machines will also allow an easier mining of consumer behavior. With proper information, it is going to be easier to create technology that consumers love and enjoy. Excited to try this? Don’t forget to download the mobile app first! Enjoy!
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