The Future of Supermarket Shopping in 1996

Broadcast on this day in 1996 a new supermarket scanning device plans to take the queuing out of shopping. Lorraine Smith reports from Superquinn, Lucan on a new scanning device called a 'super-scan'.

The device could be described as a gadget, a gizmo or a thingamajig but the intention is that it will eliminate the dreaded supermarket queues. This hi-tech system is being tested out at Superquinn, Lucan where Lorraine Smith demonstrates how it works and talks to customers about their experiences of using it. The 'Super-scan' device allows customers to check out their own goods in a D.I.Y. style as they do their shopping.

The handheld device scans the barcodes which are printed on every item in the shop and provide the customer with a running total of their bill. Once you have finished shopping, you place the device in the base unit, and collect a coded printout which you present at the super-scan checkout for payment.

It is estimated that the checkout time should be about 30 seconds. Eamonn Quinn, Superquinn, says that the system is based on the trust of their customers to certain extent. However, random checks will take place from time to time.Customers talk about the efficiency, accuracy and speed of the new system.

A RTÉ News report broadcast on 22 August, 1996.

Supermarket Scanner

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