Connected Vending Machine Trends

The very first coin-operated vending machine was introduced in London, England in the early 1880s. Since then, innovation has pushed IoT connected vending machines to new heights. From cashless payments to innovative delivery methods, the vending industry is continuing to innovate. As the vending space continues to grow, there are certain trends that are leading the way to a bigger and brighter future for the industry. Vending machines in 2020 look very different compared to those first models!

Today we’re going to take a look at some of those trends and how they are pushing IoT connected vending machines forward.

Cashless Payments. It wasn’t long ago that one had to dig around for coins or smooth out a dollar bill in order to use a vending machine. Fortunately, today, many connected vending machines offer cashless payments to make products available to anyone with a credit or debit card. Many can now handle transactions from a mobile payment source on a smartphone as well. These enhancements make it easier and more convenient for customers to pay with their chosen method instead of being forced into a single option.

Refrigeration Technology. In your childhood, you may recall seeing vending products limited to non-consumables or items with a long shelf life. As technology has expanded, you can now find vending machines that also offer refrigerated or even frozen foods available. These variations give consumers many options to choose from and appeal to a larger demographic.

Healthier Options. Vending machines have really innovated when it comes to the food that’s offered, with many more people opting for healthy options. Instead of being limited to just a sugary snack or drink, you can now find vending machines that offer up a salad, juice, and many other healthier alternatives to candy and treats.

Transparent Nutritional Data. The national obesity epidemic has had a significant impact on the vending industry as well. Many organizations have moved to put laws in place regarding nutritional offerings. The FDA requires operators that manage 20 or more machines to provide nutritional data, including calorie count. The transparency in the nutritional data is trying to combat the obesity epidemic and hopefully lead people to make healthier snack choices.

These technology advancements, along with operators being more innovative, have allowed the vending industry to evolve over time and better reflect consumer preferences, and provide more options. Cellular connectivity and current 4G LTE service is the preferred choice for a fast and secure connection that drives much of the latest trends and service offerings in the vending space.

With OptConnect’s fully managed services, we provide a commercial-grade router with customized data plans for customers. Rather than having to figure everything else out on their own, OptConnect provides everything else bundled together so that operators can simply plug in the device and almost instantly be connected to the internet.

From our 24/7 Customer Care Team to our 24/7 management and monitoring, we take care of everything for a more reliable solution. We also provide a proprietary customer portal, called Summit where operators can check and manage their portfolio from anywhere. Whether you operate one device or a thousand, OptConnect has the solutions to give you peace of mind.

To learn more about OptConnect’s vending solutions, visit www.optconnect.com/vending.

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