Jabil Inc. JBL, +2.37% today announced the availability of a connected intelligent vending platform designed to simplify and expedite the process of adding advanced digital technologies to installed vending machines. These smart upgrade solutions integrate vending machine hardware, software, user interface, payment system, wireless communications and remote management into one comprehensive, connected platform.
“Making vending machines smarter requires cross-domain technology expertise, real-time data visibility and actionable insights into customers’ purchasing patterns,” said Frederic McCoy, senior vice president, Jabil Retail. “Our smart upgrades create unprecedented value for vending machine owners and operators, as well as product distributors and property owners.”
According to Persistence Market Research (PMR), the global intelligent vending machines market is expected to reach $15 billion by 2025, with a projected CAGR of more than 15 percent during the forecasted period. PMR also states that new intelligent vending solutions will attract more customers to retail stores, helping the sector grow, especially in the U.S. 
Connected Smart Machines Improve Customer Experiences
With its fully integrated market-enablement solution, Jabil can turn traditional vending machines into highly connected smart machines that take advantage of touchscreen controls, video, audio, scent, gesture-based interaction and cashless payment. Mobile and cashless payment, in particular, are gaining traction with solutions that leverage Near-Field Communications (NFC). Smartphone applications that take advantage of Artificial Intelligence (AI) also can improve customer experiences by providing real-time inventory updates to simplify purchasing.
Driving Adoption of Intelligent Vending Solutions
Jabil has partnered with Intel to supply Intel’s reference design for intelligent vending, which includes a processor-based design and Application Programming Interface (API) for accessing machine peripherals. Jabil’s end-to-end capabilities, global footprint and ecosystem of innovation partners streamline the installation of new intelligent vending machines while simplifying conventional-machine upgrades.
In addition to optimizing hardware and configurable software, Jabil integrates user interface (UI) and control software, sensors and remaining components in a consolidated, connected platform. Process innovation is strengthened further by Jabil’s scalable services, engineering breadth and half-century of technology, manufacturing and supply chain experience. The company’s retail automation solutions have driven improvements in operational efficiencies and customer experiences while empowering retailers to realize new business models and revenue streams.
Cloud Services and Analytics Boost Operational and Supply Chain Efficiency
The ability to collect vast amounts of data comes from Jabil’s installation of sensors that capture vending machine inventory, customer buying patterns and preferences, as well as key performance indicators regarding temperature and other major functionality. Sending and receiving real-time notifications via the cloud also provides operators with much-needed visibility into inventory levels to automate restocking as well as expedite repairs while reducing maintenance costs.
Pricing and Availability
Jabil now offers customers different levels of scalable services, encompassing strategy, customer experience, hardware/software integration, analytics and ongoing support.