Types of Vending Machines in India | Applications & Use Cases (Top 10)
Vending machines were invented in the 19th century in the UK. They are automatic machines that dispense items like snacks, beverages, lottery tickets, etc. Initially, vending machines used to dispense postcards only.
Since then, vending machines have been designed and programmed to provide everything from potato chips to bikes.
This new-age retail channel is unparalleled in its appeal. Vending machines can be differentiated on the following:
1. Mode of dispensing items from vending machines
(a) Spiral: These machines consist of a spiral coil that rotates and dispenses an item when a specified coin is inserted. When a coil is inserted, the spiral coil rotates and drops the product into space from where the purchaser can access the product.
(b) Gravity-based: In these machines, a motor activates a delivery mechanism where gravity is used to force the item out of its position and into a position where the purchaser will be able to access it.
(c) Elevator: These machines have an elevator tray that moves vertically. When the purchaser selects an item, the tray moves to the vertical level of the item. Then, the tray moves downward and dispenses the item into the slot where the purchaser can access it.
(d) Smart-shelf: There are several smart-shelf vending machines. In some machines, items are equipped with an RFID tag. The software fetches the item that matches the item ordered by the purchaser. In some machines, weight sensors and computer vision is applied to dispense the item ordered by the purchaser.
2. The temperature in the vending machines
(a) Frozen (-7 degrees): These machines maintain a certain temperature inside the glass front to keep the items fresh for the purchasers. Typically, items such as ice cream, fresh meat, etc., are dispensed.
(b) Chilled (2 to 5 degrees): These machines are typically used to keep items such as fruit drinks, soda, etc., at the desired temperature to experience the drink at the perfect temperature.
(c) Ambient: Items such as potato chips, chocolate, etc., are best enjoyed at room temperatures. These machines maintain a room temperature for these items.
(d) Combo: These machines are divided into sections. Each section maintains a certain temperature This mechanism allows an assortment of goods to be sold via a single vending machine.
3. Mode of payment collection
Cash: These vending machines are designed to take in coins and banknotes.
Digital: With the introduction of digital payment systems, vending machines have been programmed to accept payments digitally. They accept payment from an app, or a QR-code is created to accept payment.
4. Assortment sold
Vending machines can also be categorized by the assortment of items they dispense. Traditionally, they were used for cold drinks, chips, etc. The different type of vending machines categorized by the assortment of items they sell are as follows:
(a) Packaged food: These machines dispense packaged foods like Lays, Doritos, Kurkure, etc. These machines keep items at room temperature.
(b) Fresh food: With advanced technology, vending machines can keep items fresh no matter the temperature required. Fresh food like hot meals and chapatis can be dispensed from these machines.
(c) Office Supplies/ Stationery: These machines are really useful and convenient for working professionals. They dispense items like A4 papers, staplers, etc.
(d) Grocery: These machines dispense grocery items like dairy products, cereal, canned goods, bread, etc.
(e) Health products: These machines dispense items like face masks, gloves, sanitary pads, gloves, etc.
5. Special use cases
Vending machines can be made to carry any item. They can dispense foods like upma, oats, noodles, etc., by adding hot water when the user purchases the item. They can be designed to carry items like pizza, pani-puri, and many more.
(a) Size and capacity based: Their size and capacity can also sort machines.
(b) Wall mount: Some vending machines are mounted to walls. They can be designed to carry any item, ranging from gloves to soda.
(c) Tabletop: These machines are small enough to be kept on tables. Generally, they dispense items like tea, coffee, chips, etc.
(d) Standalone: These machines are standalone. They can be of different sizes like 3 wide, 4 wide, and 5 wide.
6. Kind of location
Vending machines can also be differentiated based on the location where they are placed.
(a) Offices: Offices have vending machines that carry stationery, coffee, soda, fresh food, etc.
(b) Societies: Societies have vending machines carrying packaged food, cold drinks, etc.
(c) Hotels: Hotels have vending machines according to the preferences of their guests.
(d) Hospitals: Hospitals have vending machines that carry soda, coffee, etc. They also have vending machines that dispense items like gloves, syringes, face masks, etc.
(e) Hostels and PGs: These places have vending machines that cater to the needs of students.
(f) Malls: Malls have vending machines that carry various goods since they get every kind of customer.
(g) Coworking spaces: They carry vending machines that cater to the various offices situated in the space.
7. Based on Management System
There are different management systems of vending machines depending on the type of vending machine. Some machines have to be managed daily and manually, while others can be passively managed. Primarily, machines are managed in two ways:
Traditional Management: Inventories in traditional vending machines that accept coins and hard currency as payment have to be managed manually. Someone has to physically go to the site of the machine, check inventory, and restock items.
Smart Cloud-connected Systems: These new-age machines are connected to the cloud. The information about each item in the machine can be accessed from anywhere. RFID tags are attached to every item for this purpose. Users can see when inventory needs to be replenished from anywhere. A remote IoT management system can manage inventory.
Anyone thinking of starting a vending machine business can go through the guide above to figure out which machine is perfect for their business.
Daalchini provides smart vending machines that can be used for anything and any use case.
New-age vending machines with a remote IoT management system are excellent investments and do not need to be actively managed.
Daalchini also provides vending machines that can carry food items like breakfast foods, evening snacks, hot meals, and whole wheat bread like chapattis, parathas, etc. Prominent companies like TCS, OYO, Dell, GE, Snapdeal, Times of India, etc., have partnered up with Daalchini for our vending machines.
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