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TULSA, Okla. -- Most analysts say customers will always need live cashiers. ATMs have been around for 30 years but we still have bank tellers. But self-checkout eliminates customer's biggest complaint. "You don't have to wait for the people in front of you," said Brandy Schoonover, a regular shopper at the Tulsa, Okla. Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market, who prefers the self-checkout.
Most people who are using self checkout said they are doing it because there's no waiting in line. Buddy Green, Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market assistant manager, told the Associated Press, "These are here for convenience, for people who want to get a few items, get in and get out no interaction, fast as possible."
All the Neighborhood Markets have self-checkout, some Supercenters do, and it's an antidote to the number one complaint in retailing, waiting in line to check out. And it's getting more sophisticated at the grocery it asks for checker assistance for age appropriate items like tobacco and alcohol. And all these systems have some sort of shoplifter prevention system installed. That keeps you from putting more items on the belt that you have actually scanned.
The Home Depot in downtown Tulsa is the only one in Oklahoma with self-checkout, so far. The company says it'll be in about half its stores by the end of the year. Self-checkout will not, companies say, result in the elimination of checkers; they hope only to eliminate waiting in long lines.