Smart Vending Machines unveiled in Japan

Japan is vending machine land and it is estimated that there is a vending machine for every 23 Japanese person. Billions on dollars of sales are generated each year by vending machines in Japan  so there is stiff competition from manufacturers to stay ahead of rivals and attract more customers to use the machines more often. A couple of “smart vending machines” were revealed in Tokyo earlier this month this brings a whole new set of tools to the drink dispensing wars.

When a customer approaches the machine it scans them revealing their gender, age and more. It then suggests which drinks the customer would like and stores information on product purchases for future marketing use to see which drinks are popular to which segment of the market in whichever area etc. The machine is connected to Wimax wireless network which will stream advertisements and other promotional content when not in use while waiting on Skynet to transmit the necessary codes before it and other machines transform into  death dealers bent on terminating the human race.

500 in the next 2 Years

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The high-tech vending machine was co-developed by JR East Water Business Co., Omron Corp. and Fuji Electric Retail Systems Co. Starting with a pair at Shinagawa Station, JR East aims to deploy 500 of the advanced machines at its stations in and around Tokyo over the next two years. With the enhanced promotional functions, the company expects the new machines to ring up 30% more in sales than standard units. Video [in Japanese which makes in good practice for learners like me] explaining more below.

Not just for drinks

While the majority of machines in Japan are stocked with drinks, snacks, and cigarettes, one occasionally finds vending machines selling items such as bottles of liquor, cans of beer, fried food, underwear, iPods, porn magazines, sexual lubricants, live lobsters, fresh meat, eggs and potted plants. Anybody reading this in Japan who frequents Shinagawa Station wants to check out these vending machines and send me some pics and/or videos?

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Info sources
High-Tech Vending Machine Hawks Drinks At Train Station
Smart vending machines in Tokyo train station recognize age, sex
Vending Machines in Japan


9 thoughts on “Smart Vending Machines unveiled in Japan

  1. The Japanese think of everything.

    Obviously if you get porno mags, you’re going to need sexual lubricant, and you may or may not need a change of underwear–so it’s nice to have that option. And since that sort of physical activity may get you a little bit tired and perhaps even dehydrated, you’re going to need that drink…eventually, but only after you buy a live lobster….just for the hell of it.

    My brother tells me all the time that places like Japan and South Korea are the future, because everything we see in the movies as being “futuristic” is probably already there.

    He’s clearly on to something.

  2. I sure do miss eating having a daily drink or the occasional snack from a vending machine in Japan.

    When I got back home after the trip there, I had to re-acquaint myself with which way the bottom flap opened (where you collect your item). It was slightly amusing.

  3. i think that it is a good idea to have snack machines but I also think that the snacks should be a lot healthier and have a better variety and have a better advertisement so that we will want to buy the food, We have a snack machine at our school and it is not that healthy for us.

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