Austinites test new Walmart shopping app

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by QUITA CULPEPPER / KVUE News and Photojournalist JOHN GUSKY

kvue.com

Posted on March 21, 2013 at 6:31 PM

Updated Thursday, Mar 21 at 6:41 PM

AUSTIN -- Walmart is launching an innovative new pilot program right here in Austin.

For those who are looking for a quicker shopping experience at the popular store, now there's an app for that.

At the Walmart Superstore on 290 in South Austin, a steady stream of customers come and go. Many try to make the shopping trip faster by using the self check out registers.

“There are some customers who prefer not to have that customer experience,” said assistant manager Gilbert Cavazos. “They just want to get in and get out.”

Cavazos says now he's teaching shoppers about Walmart's new scan and go app.

It's free to download on your iPhone, and allows you to use your phone as a hand scanner.

“They can scan the item put it into a bag and then come to the self checkout and then check out,” Cavazos said. “It's very convenient, it's very easy to use and it's user friendly.”

Walmart says Scan and Go is a way for customers to track spending, and have some privacy when buying personal items.

We put the app to the test by roaming the store’s aisles and scanning six products we wanted.  

Once you're done shopping you don't have to scan your items again. You just go to the checkout counter, upload what you've already scanned finish and pay. But as with all technology, problems can happen.

It took three tries and 10 minutes to get the register to accept our order. Once it did, the process was quick and easy to finish. Shoppers also get an electronic receipt.

“As technology upgrades we have to upgrade with it,” Cavazos said. 

Even with glitches every so often, customers say they're willing to try the Scan and Go system out.

“You want to be able to go in and go out and at least be successful in what you wanted," customer Jeff Weather said.

“Just pay for everything as you go out, don't have to wait in long lines, I think it will work out real well,” said Vitay Patel.

Scan and Go isn't available for Android phones yet but Walmart says it should be soon.

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