Walmart is ditching the massive pick-up towers inside its stores that hold online purchases for customers.
The retailer is removing 300 of these towers and “hibernating” another 1,300 because customers grew accustomed to curbside pick-up during the pandemic — and prefer it, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The 17-foot tall robots are typically placed at the front of the store to make it easier for customers to quickly get their purchases, but increasingly customers don’t seem to like the devices.
“The customer told us they want one pickup spot, and they want that pickup spot to be outside,” a Walmart spokesperson told The Journal.
The towers — which it had hyped in investor meetings and in media presentations — were one of the newfangled robots Walmart has been using to automate its stores in recent years as it relies more heavily on technology to speed up its service and cut down on labor costs.
In January, the Bentonville, Ark.-based giant said it is converting space at dozens of its stores into warehouse operations that will be used to fulfill online orders.
“Our customers love the speed and convenience of pickup and delivery,” Tom Ward, senior vice president of customer product in the US said at the time. “And we’re committed to finding faster ways to serve them, which is why we’re scaling the number of stores that will also serve as local fulfillment centers.
The pandemic has trained customers to embrace curbside pick-up and delivery, according to the report.
Walmart is considering how it could use the pickup towers differently in the future, according to the report.
The company did not immediately respond to The Post for comment.