updated 04:45 pm EDT, Mon August 11, 2008
Best Buy vending machines
The electronics chain Best Buy announced on Monday that it would add 12 vending machine-like kiosks at the Logan International Airport in Boston and other major airports across the US. The unattended stores would be built under the chain's Best Buy Express pilot program and in partnership with San Francisco-based vending machine company ZoomSystems; the goal will be to supply devices travelers are likely to need during a trip rather than larger or more expensive items.
The machines will sell cellphone and computer accessories such as chargers, travel power socket adapters and headphones, as well as digital cameras and portable data storage devices, including memory cards. By September 1st, eight airports will receive a dozen machines each, including in Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Houston, Las Vegas, Los Angeles and San Francisco.
Best Buy's effort capitalizes on the relative success of earlier airport machines, which have often sold iPods and related devices. It's unknown whether the retailer intends to compete directly with these booths or to fill in gaps in their stock.