RCA Automated Supermarket Checkstand

By the late 1960s, minicomputers were sufficiently cheap to envision using them to automate much of the pricing and sale of groceries. RCA Corporation, working in conjunction with Kroger Company, developed a supermarket checkstand that linked to an RCA 6100 minicomputer. This is an example of the checkstand. It first operated at a Kroger’s store in Kenwood, Ohio, near Cincinnati, in July, 1972. The tests were quite successful, running for many weeks. However, the device relied on a different identification code than the Universal Product Code adopted the following year. RCA decided not to try to sell point-of-sale terminals.
Stephen A. Brown, Revolution at the Checkout Counter:The Explosion of the Bar Code, Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1997.
Currently not on view
Object Name
minicomputer peripheral
date made
RCA Corporation
Physical Description
metal (overall material)
plastic (overall material)
glass (overall material)
rubber (overall material)
overall: 4 ft x 14 ft; 1.2192 m x 4.2672 m
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Computers & Business Machines
Cash and Credit Registers
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Computers
Cash and Credit Registers
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of Sperry-Univac Computer Systems

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