History Of Vending Machines

First known history of vending machines was in the first century. This machine dispensed holy water. It had a slot to drop a drachma coin through in which the coin fell onto a pan that was attached to a lever. The lever was attached to a valve which when opened would dispense the holy water. The weight of the coin would tilt the pan downward until the coin would slide off the pan. The pan attached to the lever would rise after the coin fell off closing the valve, which turned the flow of water off.

In more recent times bulk vending was the first known venders The history of bulk venders in the modern era started in the 1880’s. In the 1950's to the 1970’s insurance companies sold flight life insurance through airports across the United States. Congress regulated this until it was not a profitable venture for the insurance companies.

Cigarette vending machines were found in many locations around the United States. They have become a rare machine in today’s world although they are still common in Germany and Japan.

Specialized Vending

This category can also be listed in the bulk category. The machines are normally mechanical in nature.

They will include menstruation machines that sell pads and tampons. Also included in this category would be condom vending machines. These two types of units are normally found in restrooms.

Laundry soap is sold through vending machines in many Laundromats. These units are mechanical in design also.

Recent Innovations

The most recent innovations include changes in coin changers and bill validators. Many manufacturers have installed sensors that let the machines know when the product does not fall. Most vending machines will try three times to make the product fall. At this point if product has not fallen into the delivery tray and has not broken the sensors beam, the money will be returned to the customer.

Wireless technology is slowly coming into the vending business. Many bill acceptors will now take a debit or credit card. Many colleges have what is called precharged cards. This is where the student receives a card and will deposit funds to be applied to the card. They normally will only be able to use the card on campus. Embracing technology is a great way to pick up new accounts. A wise man once said he always wanted to be the second person to embrace new technologies. Another way of putting this is don’t become the guinea pig for every new item that comes along.

Other new innovations are hand held devices that allow the driver to communicate with the equipment from the parking lot of the customer. This allows the driver to pull the order before entering the account saving time to refill the equipment.

Another new form of technology is transferring a machines statistics to a remote computer. This enables the company to monitor their equipment remotely. When enough products have been sold an order is pulled at the warehouse. A driver is then dispatched to that location to fill the equipment. The driver only makes one trip in and never has to write an order.

These new technologies are done through cell phone technology. The United States is behind Europe in this field. In many other countries a customer can even use their cell phone to make purchases from equipment. The cell phone is then charged and the customer pays for it when they receive their cell phone bill.




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For those of you that need assistance placing new snack box accounts. Give me a call and lets discuss how a locator can benefit you. This can put you on the fast track to owning your own snack box business. dennis.slack@gmail.com

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Wholesale prices on snack boxes.