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LEEDS, West Yorkshire, U.K. - Wal-Mart-owned Asda said today it plans to invest UK 2.4 million ($3.7 million) rolling out cutting-edge 'Techno-trollies,' a new system that it claims dramatically reduces the number of trolleys taken from stores. The rollout comes after a successful trial at six stores in England, Wales and Scotland.
Prior to the trial, some of Asda's stores lost almost four in five of its trolleys each year. But the 'Carttronics' system has slashed this to less than one in 20, it says.
Now Techno-trolleys will be rapidly rolled out to another 37 locations. The first, Irvine in Scotland, is being installed this week.
The technology behind Techno-trolleys utilizes radio waves that mark the boundary around the store where trolleys can freely circulate. When a trolley passes through this invisible boundary, a signal is sent to a receiver on the trolley, which tells it to lower a brake onto the wheels bringing it to a controlled stop.