by Kevin Coupe

One of the bigger retail stories that broke during the month of December was when Amazon said that sometime soon it will open a convenience store in Seattle that will not have any checkouts. Using technology originally developed for self-driving cars, Amazon Go will allow people to enter using an specific mobile app, p[ick up any product they want, and leave ... with all the items they take with them charged to their Amazon accounts.

Pretty cool. As was the video released by Amazon on YouTube. Which you can see here.

But I like it when the competition gets a little cheeky. Which is exactly what happened in pretty short order when French retailer Monoprix released a video on YouTube that closely mimicked the Amazon video ... suggesting that it had developed a way for customers to avoid checkout lines a decade before Amazon Go came to fruition.

Monoprix makes the point that its vision has nothing to do with apps and mobile phones, and everything to do with understanding its customers ands applying "human technology."

The video is above, and worth watching. Monoprix makes it clear that if you want to compete with Amazon, sometimes you have to come at the problem from an entirely different direction ... and that it is critical to have different and defining strengths. (It also helps to have a sense of humor, which the Monoprix folks clearly have, and an ability to execute speedily. No wasted time in crafting this response.)

That's a lesson worth learning. And an Eye-Opener worth watching.