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I thought I was losing my flippin’ mind

Uncle B and me were browsing the wine section at Aldi when one of the price labels began to flip, like an old TV picture when the aerial was knocked out. When it stopped flipping, the text was white on red. It had gone on special as I watched.

DIGITAL PRICE TAGS, y’all! They don’t look it. They must use the same paper white technology that Kindle uses.

The above article says they’ve been around for years, so I guess I’m late again, but I was floored. They’re hooked straight into the store’s inventory system and update in real time. As they put it: No more ‘have you got any of this out the back?’

I slid one off the rail and had a closer look. They don’t get power or data off the rail – it was just straight plastic. They’re battery operated and wifi.

Then I found this pile of them in the freezer section. You can see they’re about 1/8th of an inch thick. I guess they just toss them when the battery runs down.

I’m astonished this is cost-effective. Alibaba’s got them for $13 each (but $6.60 for more than 10,000). So who knows, at Aldi scale.

What a time to be alive. Happy Equinox!


Comment from Clifford Skridlow
Time: September 20, 2023, 6:59 pm

Mark my word – as you read this, some knucklehead computer geek/hacker/bored troublemaker is working at a feverish pace to figure a way to hack in to all the store’s computers and switch all the tags to display porn videos or some such. Just a matter of time . . .

Comment from Rich Rostrom
Time: September 20, 2023, 8:04 pm

Battery life is 5 years, so it should be good for hundreds of uses. It would save considerable labor, and also greatly reduce the chance of an out-of-date sticker being left on the shelf. If the out-of-date sticker advertises a sale price that is no longer in effect, and a customer is charged the regular price, not only does that offend the customer, it may expose the retailer to a fine for false price labeling.

So at $6.60 apiece, that could be quite cost effective. Aldi is very tight with with their money, so if they are using them, that indicates they must be.

Comment from QuasiModo
Time: September 20, 2023, 10:00 pm

They’ll save the costs in the first few months in not having to pay people to change the labels all the time.

Comment from Tim Carlson
Time: September 20, 2023, 11:41 pm

Could also be wireless charging.

Comment from Rimrockr
Time: September 21, 2023, 12:08 am

My grocery store has idiots managing the pricing database/sign maker. Last month the signs over avocados said “sale large for 1.99 – regularly 2.00”. Big woo !!! Also they obsess about the math challenged always including footnotes. Example “2 for 2.00” with a footnote 1.00 each. Sheesh!

Comment from Durnedyankee
Time: September 21, 2023, 12:12 am

First, thanks for friending me on Steam!
2 friends, one of whom I think might be son #2, but might not be.

Those tags would he very useful here what with the awesomeness of Bidenomics we could use them to fight the propaganda prices those evil conservatives have been sneaking in and printing with label makers! Making a half gallon of milk cost $3.29!

Just as an aside, my spell checker suggested Bidenomics was actually Biden comics. I didn’t realize this thing had a spell checker AND an AI.

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