Unguarded convenience store at Hougang CC allows visitors to pay via palm print

by Natalie Lim

We’re nowhere near flying cars and teleportation yet, but the advancement of technology in Singapore is undeniable. Besides having electric vehicles such as BlueSG, we now have Octobox, an unmanned convenience store that sells snacks, beverages and instant noodles — necessities for your Work From Home (WFH) needs.

The store may be unguarded, but it doesn’t mean that the items are for free. To pay for your purchases, all you have to do is bring along your phone.

Pay via palm-scanning and phone at Octobox

Octobox 1
Photo: Jack Lim/facebook

Located at Hougang Community Centre, Octobox offers a large variety of groceries and snacks.

Before entering the store, first-time customers would have to register by linking up their PayLah details with their palm prints.

To check out your items, all you have to do is hover your hand over the scanner provided and voilà — you’re done. A message informing you of your purchase and the amount detected will then be sent to you.

Affordable snacks, groceries & beverages

Octobox 2
Photo: Jack Lim/facebook

Robots will not be serving you at the high-tech Octobox, but visitors are welcomed to browse their aisles of snacks. The shelves are filled with popular snacks from China, such as various flavours of Lays potato chips that aren’t usually found in Singapore.

Octobox 3
Photo: Jack Lim/facebook

Over here, we see Korean snacks available too. Besides the famous honey butter chips, there are low-calorie energy bars and an interesting cookie whoopie pie.

Photo: Jack Lim/facebook

There are three types of people who WFH. 1) The people who cook their own meals. 2) People who order food delivery. 3) People who survive on instant noodles. If you belong to the third category, Octobox is an instant noodle haven.

A range of self-heating hot pots, rice bentos and instant noodles have been spotted, and the Singaporean favourite, suan la fen, is going for only S$0.99.

Photo: Jack Lim/facebook

For those that miss late-night suppers, there are even HaiDiLao soup bases at Octobox for hot pots at home.

Photo: Hougang Community Club

Heartlanders will be pleased to know that the shop sells groceries too. From fresh vegetables to milk, the supermarket is a one-stop for those around the vicinity.

Octobox (Hougang Community Centre)
Facebook
📍 35 Hougang Avenue 3, Singapore 538840
🗓️ 9am–10pm (Daily)

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