Vending machines came into being as coin-operated machines in the 1880s. From this simplistic version, they evolved and progressed into many different forms. Custom vending machines were then produced by vending machine manufacturers in order to cater to a greater customer base. Safe to say, the vending machine has traveled quite an interesting path to get where it stands today.
Earliest Examples of Vending Machines
One of the earliest examples which exist of vending machines can be traced all the way back to Egypt and its magnificent temples. This was where a Greek mathematician, named Hero of Alexandria, invented a device with remarkable similarities to the vending machines as they exist today. This one dispensed holy water inside the temples.
Other than this, scattered examples from all around the world can also be put forward as examples of vending machines in their earliest stages. For instance, around 1615, small machines made up of brass were placed in taverns. These dispensed tobacco. However, the first vending machine which can be termed as a fully automated vending machine came about in 1867 for the purpose of dispending stamps.
The Next Step: Coin Operated Machines
Coin-operated machines represent the birth of commercial vending machines. Launched in the early 1880s, these were first seen in London, where they were often placed in areas that were busy with consumers, such as railway stations and post offices. Their common locations were places where customers needed stationery products such as envelopes, notepapers and postcards which is what these first vending machines were designed for.
The Beloved Candy-Dispensing Vending Machines
The year was 1887, when perhaps the most loved version of vending machines came to life. Of course, these vending machines weren’t exactly cupcake vending machines, but they did dispense Tutti-Frutti gum. These progressed to candy-coated gumball vending machines in 1907.
Once these had been a wild success, more and more products began to be catered to and vending machines like drink vending machines started to gain popularity. In its earliest formats, beverages were dispensed by these machines into cups. This particular product, that is, beverages are still one of the most popular ones to be sold through vending machines. There were even some vending machines that sold whiskey, which dispensed right into your cup…. Although maybe that is making a comeback in some parts of the world!
Customized Specialty Vending Machines
Progression in technology has allowed vending machines to be able to dispense unique products. These include a lot of products ranging from fish bait to contraceptives, life insurance to automobiles, and just about everything in between. The provision of services/products as specialized and personalized as life insurance through digital kiosks represents a remarkable step towards automation and minimization of human intervention. The future of vending machines is vast, and businesses would be wise to pay attention to this inevitable technological advance.
Vending machines are none other than a significant automation process. Going along with the flow of technology progression is highly critical for the progress of a business. Even better, is to pioneer the use of new technologies. Therefore, businesses should definitely seek out vending machines that can be used to sell their products, to take advantage of all the unique autonomous benefits vending machines afford.