Walmart Launches New Map Feature In App, Robotic Pickup System For Groceries

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BENTONVILLE (KFSM) - At an innovation panel at the Sam's Club Home Office Wednesday (June 3), developers unveiled several new technologies that Walmart is planning to launch.

One of the new innovations the retailer launched in only ten stores across the nation, including the Walmart across from the home office in Bentonville, is the store map feature in the Walmart App.

Director of Product Strategy Justin Toupin said feature piggy-backs off the "search my store" feature released in October of 2014. He said developers added the maps so shoppers can more easily locate items in the store.

"What if you're in the store and you're buying something like cheese cloth which you just don't buy that often, and you could go find an associate and that's a great option or you could launch the Walmart app, use the search my store feature and use the maps we provide as a way to navigate to that item," Toupin said.

He said the map will show where the product is, including the aisle and where in the aisle it's located. Walmart is testing another innovation in England called "Click and Collect,"with an improved pickup system called an "Intelligent Collection Pod."

Vice President of Grocery Home Shopping Kieran Shanahan said a customer can order groceries online, then go to one of pods where they can scan their phone to get them.

"It's really the last step of the journey when the customer places an online order for groceries, so when they come to collect the groceries they are able to interact with this device, and this really gets the groceries to them in less than 60 seconds so it's super fast and super convenient," Shanahan said.

The pods "Click and Collect"  are utilizing are a fully robotic system, and the pods can be placed where there's high traffic. Shanahan said there's no timeline for when the innovation will be launched in the U.S.