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Amazon’s Biometric Breakthrough: Palm-Scanning Payments to Grace All Whole Foods Stores by Year-End

Ready to pay with a high-five? Amazon recently announced plans to deploy its innovative palm-scanning payment technology, known as Amazon One, to over 500 Whole Foods stores nationwide by the close of 2023.

Initially introduced in 2020, Amazon One stands as a novel paradigm of contactless biometric authentication, akin to Apple’s Face ID. Yet, instead of scanning your visage, Amazon One reads your palm – its unique lines, ridges, and underlying vein patterns. This comprehensive read, including deeper subcutaneous elements, ensures that no crafty cheese lover can scamper away with luxury dairy products just by snapping a photo of your palm.

Amazon One links your unique ‘palm signature’ with your Amazon Prime account or a credit card. The upshot? You can leave your phone and wallet at home and still cruise through the aisles, collecting and paying for your goods with a mere wave of the hand. As of now, Amazon One graces 200 Whole Foods and an equal number of other retail outlets in the United States. With the slated expansion, the count of Amazon One-enabled payment locations will tip over the 700 mark by year-end. And it’s not just for groceries – you can already use Amazon One at select venues, such as Coors Field in Colorado and certain Panera Bread eateries.

To date, Amazon reports more than 3 million ‘uses’ of the technology, presuming that each ‘use’ equals a transaction. While that may sound impressive, it averages out to about a million Amazon One transactions annually since its launch. For comparison, CardRates recorded a whopping 39.6 billion credit card transactions in the US in 2019 alone.

Even so, new technologies need time to win hearts and minds. Amazon’s confidence in the potential of Amazon One shines through as it plans to expand to all Whole Foods locations.

“Since we’ve introduced Amazon One at Whole Foods Market stores over the past two years, we’ve seen that customers love the convenience it provides,” said Leandro Balbinot, chief technology officer at Whole Foods Market. He added, “and we’re excited to bring Amazon One to all of our customers across the U.S.”

As the future of payments continues to evolve, Amazon One positions itself as a front-runner, promising to reshape the retail landscape and redefine the shopping experience.