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How and when vending machines were invented? | Vending Expert Series Ep. 3



Smartven started a new form of informative series on vending machines titled Vending Expert Series. The series with more or less 2-minutes long will be in the format of asking questions to the vending machine expert, and hopefully can help people understand better about vending machines in a less text-book way. Previously we have found out what a vending machine is. The second episode will cover the basic question of “how and when vending machines were invented?”. Let’s take a look.



Rapid development

In the past, the buying process at a vending machine that we are familiar with is an analog vending machine, which is by inserting a certain amount of cash into the bill acceptor at the machine according to the price of the products. In addition to the price of the product which is usually fixed (e.g. Rp 10,000, Rp 20,000, etc.), the money must also be neat so that it is readable by the machine. Most of the products sold are in bottles or cans, and also small snacks. But now, vending machines can accept cashless payments. The products sold are even more diverse, ranging from skincare to clothes. The rapid development of vending machines gets us thinking, who was the first person who thought of and initiated the concept of a vending machine? What's history like?




Simple invention

The concept of a vending machine was first initiated by Hero, a mathematician and engineer from Alexandria. The mathematician who is known as the 'Heron of Alexandria' saw that holy water in his places of worship was limited, but with a great number of people who needed it. That was when he thought of making a large cup that has a slot to insert coins. After the coin is inserted, the faucet on the cup will turn and release water momentarily. The limited resources in ancient times has caused the continuity of the concept of this vending machine to overcome scarcity. The way the machine works is also made automatically so that it can be accessed at any time. The classic shape of vending machines that we see today then began to bloom in the 1800s where many machines were made to sell stamps, postcards, to newspapers. In essence, all of these machines have a trigger device to eject items.


The weekly series will cover more interesting topics about vending machines, so make sure to check the video on Smartven’s YouTube channel, and give it a thumbs up, comment, subscribe and share the video! You can always check our website and Instagram page for more information. Stay healthy and see you in the next episode!


English version by: Nadhiya Pradhanitasari

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