People on Twitter are furious at this startup that aims to replace mom-and-pop stores with vending machines


A new startup launched by two former Google employees aims to replace the corner store – but city dwellers on Twitter don’t seem too happy about that.

Called Bodega , after New Yorkers’ preferred term for the local convenience store, the idea behind the startup is to place interactive pantry boxes full of non-perishable goods in convenient spots, so that you can just grab and go without making the trip all the way to the corner.

The startup was founded by two former Googlers, Paul McDonald and Ashwath Rajan, who first talked about the concept in a profile  in Fast Company.

An app unlocks the box, and camera sensors see what you take so that you are charged accordingly. The startup has been testing the concept in location like gyms, apartment lobbies, and offices. The idea is to flood the world with Bodega boxes, so “one will never be more than 100 feet away from you.” For now, they’re launching with 50 locations on the West Coast.