Amazon has opened its second Amazon Go cashierless convenience store in downtown Seattle at the corner of Fifth Avenue and Marion Street, according to the Seattle Times, but the new store appears to be much smaller than what had been widely reported just last month.
This week's report stated that the new Amazon Go location is about 1,450 square feet — not the 3,000 square feet initially reported by other publications based on details of a building permit at the location — and thus lacks space for some product sections that can be found at the pilot Amazon Go store that opened near Amazon's Seattle headquarters in early 2018. Amazon did not immediately return Retail Dive's request for comment on the sizing of the store.
Also unlike the pilot store, this second Amazon Go location doesn't have an on-site kitchen. Much of the merchandise selection will consist of ready-made or easy-to-make food products, but these items will be produced at another Amazon-owned kitchen elsewhere in Seattle, according to the report.
The store opening itself comes as little surprise, as Amazon confirmed to Retail Dive last month that it was preparing to open a second concept at this location. However, not all of the details matched up with expectations.
For starters, the new location is opening slightly earlier than expected, as Amazon told Retail Dive via e-mail last month that new store would open in "Fall 2018."
Another surprising detail, and perhaps more notable, is that the size of the new store is less than half the square footage of what had been speculated last month. The Seattle Times report suggests that with its second Amazon Go store, the e-tailer may be trying to target more of a downtown pre-work and post-work crowd looking to buy quick snacks and ready-made meals. A smaller store would make sense in that regard, though the location could also contain space to grow or areas that Amazon may open later.
Most importantly, though, the app and in-store technology used to help shoppers checkout quickly remains the same, which is likely a good sign for the overall Amazon Go roadmap. The company has as of yet not had to tweak or revamp the technology approach used for its pilot store, although that store reportedly did experience early technical glitches, long since overcome.
What's next on Amazon's roadmap for Amazon Go remains to be seen. The company reportedly has settled on locations for future stores in Chicago and San Francisco, and also reportedly plans to have six Amazon Go stores open before the end of 2018, but Amazon itself hasn't confirmed that. This new store opening, though, suggests the retailer is confident in the Amazon Go model and could be on its way to more locations.