At its Intel Developers Conference in San Francisco today, Intel showed its work to make vending machines smarter, and, as it turns out, more sanitary.
Intel announced an initiative in May with the vending tech company N&W in which it will deliver a low-energy Internet of Things chip for the vending machines. The chips can be installed to retrofit existing vending machines, Intel said.
The machines use Intel RealSense camera technology in the machines to detect gestures. So, for example, you can use a gesture to pick a soda or snack and buy it without touching the machine, which is way more sanitary than using the big punch buttons.
Intel said the new vending machine chips will facilitate various tasks, including machine control, touchscreen functions, telemetry, digital advertising, and payment and transaction management.
Intel forecasted global shipments of intelligent vending machines to reach around 2 million units by 2016, combining both new and retrofit markets.