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See the New Uses for Vending Machines

Cupcake, champagne dispensers among the new types

Uniqlo clothing vending machine installed in a public area


Uniqlo clothing vending machines have been popping up across the U.S., including at airports and malls (as pictured here.)

The hot trend in retail? Tech watchdog Technavio reports that vending machines are riding a 26 percent growth wave in 2018. By processing credit cards and other cashless payments, they can sell far more than beverages and snacks. 

Juice machine

Enough with the soda slurping. A California start-up has developed machines that serve up cold-pressed juice at locations including supermarkets and fitness centers. JuiceBot promises that its ingredients are fresh, within 24 to 48 hours, and consumers can pick their flavor blends. Drinks are $4 to $8.

Cupcake dispenser  

No factory-made “snack cakes” here. Instead, Sprinkles machines, in 12 cities across the U.S., dispense gourmet cupcakes, freshly made at the company’s bakery. Perfect for when you need a sugar fix at an odd hour. Confections, including red velvet and triple cinnamon flavors, run $5 to $6.

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A woman getting a cupcake from a vending machine, a champagne vending machine.

Li Kim Goh/Getty Images; Newscom

New types of vending machines include ones where you can get cupcakes by Sprinkles (left) or Moët & Chandon champagne (right).

Champagne on demand

Where do the elite meet? Vending machines. At a hotel in Las Vegas and an upscale bar in New Orleans, you can get a mini or split (bottle) of Moët & Chandon champagne for $20. Or purchase precious metals at Gold to Go machines in New York City, Las Vegas and Atlantic City, N.J.  

Clothes on the go

You arrive in a new city and find that you didn’t pack enough. For travelers who are chilly upon arrival, salvation may be found in a machine. Mechanical vendors in some U.S. airports will sell you a stylish Uniqlo down vest for $70. A machine in a San Francisco terminal reportedly brings in $10,000 per month. 

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