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Those from my generation likely remember the great fun we had trying to get our moms to give us a nickel or dime at the grocery store so we could get a handful of M&Ms or Hot Tamales from the coin-eating candy machines. While I was seldom successful (my Mom was a health food nut), I thought there was nothing cooler.

However, as the saying goes, “Hold my beer.” Automated vending machines at several stores in Alabama and Oklahoma are dispensing something even better than Hot Tamales—specifically, ammunition.

According to a report at al.com, a company called American Rounds makes and markets an automated ammunition dispensing machine that uses AI technology and facial recognition technology to verify a buyer’s identification and age via card scanning and facial recognition software. According to the report, a buyer inserts his or her photo ID, and the machine conducts a 360-degree scan of the purchaser’s face to match it to the ID card.

American Rounds CEO Grant Magers said Fresh Value stores in Tuscaloosa and Pell City approached his company about installing the first machines.

“The store is a real inspiration for it,” Magers said in a promotional video. “They knew their customer base and came to us and thought this would be a really good opportunity for their customer base. This is a hunting community here in Pell City, and they thought their customers would love the opportunity to buy ammunition here at the store.”

Terry Stanley, COO of Fresh Value, said he’s really excited to offer what he believes is the first ammo kiosk.

“We’re always looking for ways to give our customer another reason to come visit our stores—anything that we can do to help them and make their shopping trips easier,” Stanley said in the video. “Based on the feedback that we’ve gotten just from customers today, they are so excited about us having the ammo kiosk.”

Screenshot from American Rounds promotional video.

American Rounds’ Magers said one of the ways his company is changing the landscape of ammunition sales is making it more available and more secure.

“Being able to move it into a place like a grocery store or supermarket makes it a lot more available to the public,” he said. “But we’re taking a different approach to it. Traditionally, ammunition is sold at outdoor-type stores and sporting goods stores and it just sits on the shelf. It’s very accessible, and because of that there’s a high rate of theft. But with our machines, we have a very secure automated retail machine. We’re able to age verify… So the machines really provide an opportunity for safe, affordable and available ammunition sales.”

Magers said along with Alabama, his company has machines slated to go into Louisiana and Texas in the coming year.

“So, over the next year, we’re looking forward to seeing these roll out throughout the South and Southeast,” he said.

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47 COMMENTS

  1. Just you wait. “But, but, but, what about the children???
    We use to have cigarette and beer machines. But we don’t anymore. Because the so.ci.alist prog.ressiv.e just can’t stand capitalism.

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    • You guys had beer machines? I think most people fought to remove cigarette machines because their product caused cancer and they’re an addictive product we need to keep away from children. I

  2. Wow so AI scans you & sends this info to “who”? And I was annoyed when ILLANNOY gunshops told you you needed a FOID to buy ammo.There doing that in nearby Indiana too. One guy in Indiana said he had to run my #! I said NO I’ll never patronize your shop again Sheepdog Guns in far south Dyer,Indiana. Even Cabela’s only glances at a FOID but doesn’t run it. Sadly 2 shops in Lake county,Indiana have gone out(or been forced by litigation)of business. Westforth in rural Gary& Blythes in Griffith.

    • I’m way beyond the need (for a person with some common sense who looks at my face) to check my I.D. to verify I can legally purchase that bottle of dinner wine at checkout, but every once in a while some clerk tells me he/she cannot simply look at my DL in my hand, but needs to hold it for closer scrutiny. I stopped doing this when an employee took my license from my fingers and swiped it into the register’s system, without even looking at it herself which would have been sufficient. I got royally pissed and called the supervisor over, then told them both they will *never* touch my license again, and to *never* put a customer’s information into an unknown system without providing advance notice and allowing the opportunity for the customer to opt out.

      Both the employee and the supervisor were unimpressed, so I’ve never purchased wine there again, and eventually ended up migrating at least 50% of my usual purchases over to another store that treats me better (but costs a little more).

    • With the right hardware, it could process the image locally and only keep the data in RAM, flushing after the transaction is completed.

      That said… I’m sure the worst is true and it saves the data to a disk and, at some point, sends the images and information to the highest bidder, the government, and eventually random hackers.

      • Yeah pretty much my thoughts as well I just tend to default to likely worst case and skip the could be. Would be great if your former idea was the process and it deleted each ID match and wiped all data past how much of what caliber/loading was sold in a given time frame for restock and distribution purposes but what can you do.

  3. Hello database, more biometrics and behavior collection for the overlords. No thank you (and not a conspiracy theorist,,, “no joke”).

  4. You guys are so worried about credit card companies tracking your ammo purchases and yet we have this?

    Why complain if this is what everyone wants?

  5. It will be real liberty when you can get a blister pack with the pistol of your choice and ammo out of a vending machine.

  6. I like the idea of ammo vending machines. But as far as tracking you goes. The government has been doing that since the credit card was invented.

    The government just gets a warrant. And the leader of the Libertarians is very comfortable with private companies tracking everyone.

    After all, a private multi-billion dollar company can’t do any harm. Only the government can take your rights away according to the libertarians.

  7. It’s really nice of those guys to help the feds build and/or upgrade their facial recognition databases.

      • There are blockers for the RFID chip but yeah they have your face for AI driven recognition of networked cameras forever.

        • The RFID isn’t something I even think about.

          It’s the picture that matters IMHO. Especially once linked not just to networked cameras but to the databases that cross reference face with gait. Once that’s done, it’s lights out for any sort of privacy.

          The latter (gait recognition) is surprisingly accurate even if you try to hide under a full burqa.

          • The gait stuff was just starting to trickle down to our unit during deployment and yeah it was remarkable especially when we figured out concealed AKs and suicide vests can have detectable patterns. Only the blimps had all those toys but helps when they like Wawa coffee and that is what the PA units run on.

            • It’s now definitely deployed at major transit hubs like airports.

              Gait recognition, not blimps. Thought you might believe differently if you fly coach and sit next to one.

              • Which, by the by, is why I randomly start walking like Johnny Depp in Fear and Loathing is Las Vegas when in public.

                Sometimes I mix in the Popeye arm swing.

                Until my wife slaps me.

    • Have you boarded a plane lately? TSA is scanning everyone’s faces and comparing that scan to the pictures on their state issued ID.

      Our government already knows what each and every one of you looks like.

      Security through obscurity is not security at all.

      • The facial scan at the airport is optional. I just had a flight. I opted out and there were no problems from anyone.

      • Last time I was on a plane was 30 years ago….flew from Louisville, KY to San Antonio, TX and it took 25 hours with the layovers and delays. I rented a car and drove back in 18 hours and had a more enjoyable trip.

        Flying within the continental US is for suckers….

  8. I’ll go somewhere and pay cash thank you. I won’t be tracked and profiled into any gun database or registry.

    Hard Pass.

  9. For all the arguments about tracking and other nonsense I think the real concern with these things is the machine getting broken into or the delivery guy getting robbed.

    “But I don’t want to be on a list!”

    “You’re already on them, bud”

    “Nuh-uh! I pay cash!”

    “Ok there, Jason Bourne. You pay cash, great. And then you go on the internet bragging about it or looking up gun websites and gear reviews.”

    “bUt MuH VpN!”

    *facepalm*

    “Jesus dude, what are you, 5, and still waiting on Santa? FoxAcid, look it up. That shit’s the 15 year old version of how this works. QUANTUM was the next step. After that… well, I’m sure they just gave up and went back to respecting your BOR promised rights, because .gov ALWAYS does that when it faces zero consequences.

    You really think you got some $15/month software and defeated the NSA’s TAO? Oh, you do do believe that? Well, sheeeeet, are you interested in bridge based real estate?”

    • In some cases we just don’t want our state having any easy data on how much or what of. Not much one can do if they draw the attention of Fedzilla.

      • Hey, strych9, tell me more about the bridge property you have – I need to come up with a solution to accessing my recently purchased South Dakota oceanfront timeshare. Are you interested in any trades? … I recently nearly stole a mobile home purchase on a lot in some place called Atlantis, but google maps just leads me to somewhere east of Florida.

        • I’ll have my agent contact your agent and set up a lunch.

          But, fair warning, you’re going to need a decent lawyer. The real money here is in the MBS derivative options.

          That way, even if we make a mistake, the taxpayers bail us out!

      • The state already has what the Fed has via Fusion Centers. That’s why the Feds use the labels that they do. Those aren’t just cutsie slurs, they’re legalese that allows for targeting and sharing of “intel”.

        WOT, brother. You ain’t got no rights. Since 2001.

        • Incompetence on the part of the state does blunt the effectiveness of such centers as the nature and frequency of such busts can attest to. Also could just be waiting for lighter complexions to be the suspect to get some equity in enforcement as we gotta keep pushing white supremacy like it was the 90’s and “relevant”.

          • “Incompetence on the part of the state does blunt the effectiveness of such centers as the nature and frequency of such busts can attest to.”

            True. As others have noted, it’s a good thing that we don’t actually get as much government as we pay for.

            I’m waiting for the White Supremacist (Feds) to run into the Black Hebrew Israelites. That’s gonna be a hoot when they beat the shit out of some Feds in the street and then .gov has to figure out how to get away with charging them for beating up LE.

  10. Worried about the vending machine doing a facial recognition scan? Worried about some unknown gov. agency getting some info on you? Hate to burst your bubble but if you have a gov. issued ID, ever been in the military, flown commercial, or done anything with any gov. agency the gov already has that info. Been using facial recognition in the casino’s for years. You can bet that info is being shared with some one at the state or federal level.
    Until we can restore our constitutional rights to what they should be, and get rid of a large part of the gov. we will be looked at as potential criminals simply for going about our everyday lives.
    The vending machine looks like a fair solution to some of the issues of on the shelf ammo theft. Not a fan about the AI facial recognition crap but the article doesn’t mention if the info is being shared or recorded or just used as id verification to match up with the DL or ID being used.

  11. I’m still trying to figure out the “360° scan.” Do you stick your whole head in the machine? If you don’t match the ID, does it hold you while authorities are summoned?

  12. The don’t answer the important questions like:
    *What calibers? They talk about the “hunting community” there, so can I get 30-06 165 grain Nosler tip?
    *Is the ammo any good?
    Sounds like what this is about is spur-of-the-moment self defense or Alabama reload.

  13. A worthwhile invention if only for the comically horrified reactions of the gun grabbers on social media.

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