Tesco has introduced a new automated queuing system using “3D body imaging” to track the number of people in store and ensure social distancing is maintained.
Tesco is set to roll out the new technology across the majority of its stores in Ireland, following a successful trial at its branch in Greystones, starting with 60 of its largest branches.
Customers waiting to enter the store will be presented with a digital kiosk at the entrance which displays both the number of shoppers currently in the store and the maximum number allowed in to maintain social distancing.
If the number of shoppers is below the maximum, which will change from store to store, the sign will invite shoppers to “please come in”, but if the store is at capacity it will instruct them to wait.
Cameras will use 3D body imaging to track how many people are coming in and out of the store, but Tesco says these are only sensory and “does not recognise or record individuals”.
“We’ve worked hard to maintain a safe shopping environment for colleagues and customers to date,” Tesco Ireland’s chief operating officer Geoff Byrne said.
“This new technology is a simple, accurate way of reducing queue times and allows our colleagues spend more time helping customers.”
Though this technology is designed to free up security to focus on other tasks, busy times or hours dedicated to elderly shoppers will continue to be personally manned.
Currently the system is only scheduled for roll out in Ireland, but with UK rival Asda predicting social distancing could last until the end of the year and similar technology being introduced at Aldi, it could soon be introduced here.