Demo video shows a Mexican version of the skill. We have published a US version for this competition with the same features.
For many older adults, prolonging a career into older age is not just a means of preserving income but furnishing life with a network of other friends and colleagues and an outlet for intellectual energy and curiosity.
In America, more than half (54%) of small business owners are over 50. Unfortunately, they are at greatest risk for eye diseases which limit their business daily activity.
Due that vision problems are often a normal part of aging, we create cash register solution to help older adults to manage their business and be more productive and independent.
What it does
Cash register is like a digital partner in your business.
Using cash register, you can create an order, charge your customers and get your total sale report without the need to touch surfaces or use a keyboard
Cash Register generates QR codes linked to payment links that your customers scan to pay. You will get an Alexa notification once the transaction is processed successfully.
Optionally, you can customize your product catalog and find out which are the most popular products and services in your business.
How we built it
We designed the solution to produce a business assistant focus on attending a point of sale.
Cash Register assistant recognizes products, payment types and amounts of the order. We use DynamoDB services to save order data, AWS S3 to store the QR codes and AWS SES to send sales reports by email.
We take advantages of APL to display QR codes to customers so they can scan and pay easily.
Cash register uses stripe's integrations to create payment links and Alexa proactive events API to notify sucessful payments.
Challenges we ran into
Our main challenge was integrating skill implementation with AWS services like SES or DynamoDB, and external services like Stripe to produce a business-oriented skill.
For example, we had to invoke Stripe API´s to create payment link and show it in a APL layout through QR code generated in AWS S3.
Fortunately, we were able to take advantage of the technical documentation and YouTube videos of the Alexa Developers channel to solve the problems.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We are testing a mexican version of the solution in an association called Anamacidevi (Blind and vision impairment Physiotherapists National Association).
We're proud of helping them to use Alexa technologies not only to manage their business but also to schedule appointments or play music for their patients.
We hope that this solution with the appropriate promotion can help more older adults business in Mexico and USA.
What we learned
During our usability testing, we found out that this solution can be useful not only for older adults but other businesses that need to keep their hands free while attending their customers.
Businesses such as coffee shops or Ice cream parlors, can take advantage of this skill to keep their hands free(and clean) to prepare food while cash register skill works as an administrative assistant.
What's next for Cash Register
Next releases of cash register will have:
- Customer/patient registration.
- Price management
- Inventory management
- Ticket printer integration.