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Coles Could Track Data With New Trolley System

Supermarket giant Coles are looking to modernize the way it keeps track of its trolleys with “coinless shopping trolley locks”.

Currently undergoing trials in Middle Camberwell in Melbourne, Coles are hoping that the new “technology will help minimize abandoned shopping trolleys in the community,” according to a company spokesperson in an interview with Gizmodo.

Users would be required to download the Comes sMart Shop app, sign-up, purchase a digital $2 coin and then scan the QR code. Once the trolley is returned, the $2 is refunded.

The change makes sense as more and more people opt for digital payments and no longer carry cash.

However, there are concerns with data tracking, as the system requires your name, email address and credit card details. The sMart Shop app also rewards you with discounts based on your shops, and allows you to put together shopping list. As a result, people signed up to the service are likely to be tracked and advertised to based on their demographic and shopping habits, and the trolley system is a great way to force people onto the app.

The Coles spokesperson also said that “Customers who don’t wish to use them can speak to a team member to arrange a trolley to complete their shopping,” meaning users are able to opt out of the app, but the alternative is far less convenient.



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