SMART Technology is the driving force for what we do at Livewell Vending. With SMART technology supporting our services and our machines, we have managed to grow Livewell Vending into a more effective and efficient vending machine provider.
Read on to learn more about what SMART technology is, and how we have managed to build it into the processes that make Livewell what it is today.
SMART Technology is a term which has been growing in popularity over the years as the dawn of intelligently designed software and hardware has snuck over the horizon. Now the age of SMART tech has risen and shines brightly over every corner of our lives.
SMART technology allows us to fit personal computers in our pockets so we can Google, tweet, or game on the go. Your phone doesn’t just know your friends’ number, it knows who all of your friends are, what they like to do, eat, watch, or play, and where they often spend their time.
Your phone can do this because it has access to where you are all of the time, what your search history looks like, and from the data that you said that one website could use for marketing purposes that one time.
Individuals can promote themselves just as well as any business, and businesses have never understood more about their customers. Your car is on its way to driving itself, and your carpet was vacuumed by a robot. Nowadays you can enjoy the likes of SMART toothbrushes, SMART forks, SMART wine bottles, SMART bins, SMART water bottles, and even, you guessed it… SMART egg trays.
Suffice to say SMART technology does a lot for everybody, as is its purpose. What does SMART technology mean though? SMART originally meant “Self-Monitoring, Analysis and Reporting Technology” but is now used much more broadly to mean technology that has been enhanced to be more aware, or more responsive. Your car knows where you should park because of in-built sensors that respond to ultrasonic waves.
SMART technology uses artificial intelligence, machine learning, and/or data analysis to enhance an inanimate object into something more responsive.
How could you possibly improve upon a vending machine? Vending machines have a fairly simple task with a fairly simple purpose. You give it money. It gives you snack. Right?
Ever had a vending machine eat your coin? Is it out of your favourite drink? Your favourite snack? That’s not okay in our book.
It would be pretty great if we could develop a solution to coins being stuck (we have), or if we could track when we’re running low on our favourite snacks and drinks (we can).
SMART technology is the answer to working smarter and more effectively no matter what the sector, which is why we take any and all tech developments in the world of vending into serious consideration (no matter how wacky they might seem at first).
For Livewell, we have always tried to stay at the forefront of technological trends, being one of the first vending companies to integrate contactless payments into our machines. You can guarantee that the vending machines we provide aren’t rusty outdated boxes, but excellently designed machines with the latest add-ons and accessories that you want or need to deliver the best service.
The hardware for these machines has improved significantly, seeing a boost in the quality of the machines Livewell provides so they can deliver products in a much more efficient manner. Some of our machines even feature a robotic delivery system, that acts to reserve the quality of the product at delivery.
Contactless is seen everywhere nowadays, and its advantages are often taken without a pinch of salt. Not too long-ago cash was essential for being out and about. You never knew when a shopkeeper would utter the words “cash only”. Whether it was for a car park or the ice cream man, cash was the way to go. Then banks started offering contactless card payments and plastic became more and more the norm. It was only in 2014 that Apple released the Apple Pay feature, and it was only a few years ago that there were those shunning this contactless payment feature. It seemed dangerous to some that your phone can instantly access your bank account so you can pay with the touch of a button, or even just by looking at your phone. Now everybody is on the contactless trend, and cash has gone the way of the dodo.
This is why contactless payment comes as standard for our fully-managed customers. We know that for many people cashless payment technology is not only a necessary option, but an essential in riding the technological wave wherein money never needs to be in your hands for it to leave the bank. We can supply a range of contactless payment devices, our most popular is the Onyx, from the market leaders in payment devices, Nayax.
We work closely with Nayax to supply our contactless payment options. We share their customer-first mindset, with their focus being on the development of Nayax products and enhancement of the consumer experience. This includes accepting any new form of payment, to continuously providing peace of mind with the strictest security certifications, and 24/7 monitoring.
The Onyx is a sleek contactless card reader which is easy to fit and gives consumers a simple way to pay using a vast range of cashless payment options. The Onyx has a compact eye-catching design, and uses an easy navigation system with a colour touchscreen, and wide range of contactless payment types accepted. There is even a voice interaction option, for easy understanding, and ease-of-use.
Nayax also offers the Gryphon Coin Changer to elevate and optimise coin use with these machines. Where payment by coin is required, it needs to be secure and reliable. The Gryphon Coin Changer has the most technologically advanced coin sensing technology to ensure fast and efficient coin acceptance, and change dispense, along with increased coin capacity to ensure change is always available. This means faster coin acceptance with patented coin sensing technology alongside increased reliability with three motor system with 6 tubes providing 12% extra capacity. The Gryphon also features wireless, on-site, connectivity for easy fault diagnostics and repair and USB connectivity for easy updates and configuration.
There is one particular feature that we provide to all of our fully-managed customers as standard, which underpins the whole way we operate and service our vending machines.
Telemetry is the collection of measurement or other types of data from remote data points and their automatic transmission to a monitoring system. There are different types of telemetry for different sectors or particular situations. Meteorologists use telemetry to measure the weather, doctors use telemetry to measure their patients’ respiratory rate, scientists use telemetry to transmit information from space. We use telemetry to measure what’s popular.
We monitor sales and performance directly from our desk, using our real-time data collection system. Our vending stations are tied directly to the cloud which gives us real-time instant access to sales, stock, and performance data. This quick-response program is what really makes our vending machines and vending solutions smart. This live data output delivers a whole host of benefits for our services and our customers.
We provide this system for free for all of our fully-managed customers purely because we want to make the most out of this live and remote access to your equipment. We also make sure that you have access to all this data for equipment we operate at your site. This is the optimal way to effectively run a modern unattended retail business across remote locations.
Our self-fill customers can also access the telemetry system as an optional extra, and we can provide you with the software and training that will give you easy and simple access to live data. This way you will be able to run reports to reconcile revenue with stock in order to explore trends and performance over time so you can maximise sales.
Our live sales feed shows us sales as and when they happen, with real-time stock status assisting with refill scheduling, as well as alerts for errors and events to minimise downtime. Planogram analysis improve the product ranges our clients are presenting whilst maximising the use of space within the machine. Customisable reporting is also available and is perfect for analyses, and to quantify sales over defined periods to suit your business’s needs.
Vending machines are considered to be a hands-on experience, interacting at a physical level to supply payments and in-turn receive your snack or beverage. Since the Covid-19 pandemic there has definitely been an uptick in the number of users who are precautious of interacting with hardware that has also been in contact with potentially dozens (or even hundreds) of other users. So whether you’re still concerned about coronavirus, suffer from an immunodeficiency disorder, or just looking out for your general health and wellbeing, SMART technology offers people an avenue for safe, hygienic vending.
The first, simplest, and most surprising solution is the use of antimicrobial films on our machine’s touchpoints. At all points of interaction, we can implement a seemingly magical film that eliminates germs and bacteria that could have been spread to the machines from the user’s hand. This film works as a top-layer that can simply be stuck onto the desired surface, and using a safe bacteria-blocking agent called Agion that prevents the growth of unwanted bacteria by preventing bacterial cell multiplication. The solution is safe to touch, non-toxic, and non-irritating. The use of this film on Livewell Vending Machines mean they are primed for schools and hospitals, where germs can run rampant, and stop them from spreading.
Still don’t trust in the power of antimicrobial films? That’s okay. We can take it a whole step further. We can even supply a SMART tech solution for our machines which means you don’t even have to touch them. Hover-touch touchscreens keep a safe distance of 2cm from the screen and your hand, stopping the germs from interacting with you, while still allowing you to make your selection effectively. Hover-touch touchscreens mean customers don’t have to make contact with the screens in order to make a purchase increasing usability, and, once again, preventing the spread of infections and diseases.
As previously mentioned, onyx contactless payment options are incredibly efficient, next-level software and a wide range of contactless payment options to fill your boots with. The built-in onyx voice interaction system puts the distance between yourself and the machine so you no longer have to interact with frequent touchpoints, sustaining hygiene and improving interactivity.
Going that one step further, we can lean into the power of smartphone technology. Smartphone selection means you don’t even have to interact with the machine at all. This enables the user to simply purchase items directly from your phone, saving them time, and making purchases more convenient for the user.
As SMART technology seeps ever more into the avenues of everyday life, vending is being built upon and developed in a way that elevates the user experience beyond the standard. For what is essentially a big metal rectangle, there’s a lot going inside. Vending machines can communicate significant information to vending machine providers and vending clients alike, with modern interactivity that makes it easier for users to engage with the machine, and even easier for the product to be delivered. Common problems like coins getting stuck have found modern solutions!