There's bad news if you use your weekly trip to the grocery store to mostly stock up on free samples. A company called Freeosk has developed an automated free sample vending machine that requires store patrons to scan their membership cards before they can partake. So there's no stopping by again and again, and you can forget about sweet talking the representative.
Stores will no doubt love the idea, since it lets them maximize the number of shoppers getting free samples. And by requiring a membership card scan, it also provides the store with mountains of data on the demographics of who swiped for a sample. The kiosks even feature shelving with the sample product for sale, and touchscreens facilitating feedback, letting marketers know how effective the free samples were.
In fact the only people who would be opposed to the Freeosks—which will start rolling out at Sam's Club stores across the country—are those who stand to lose their jobs, and those of us who rely on free samples as a lunch staple. Here's to hoping Trader Joe's doesn't catch wind of these. [Freeosk via Fast Company]