Walgreens Cooler Screens fridge door tracking, advertising

Released: January 2019

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Walgreens and other US retailers are increasingly using Cooler Screens digital screens in place of traditional refrigerated doors in order to show customers personalised real-time adverts from Coca-Cola, Nestle, and others, and to increase sales. 

The use of the technology is proving controversial, with customers and commentators claiming they are unnecessary, creepy, and intrusive. Walgreens first piloted the Cooler Screens system in Chicago in January 2019.


The use of Cooler Screens has attracted considerable concerns and criticism: 


Cooler Screens says it plans to educate customers about the digital displays and launch features such as voice recognition. However, customers are still not informed that they are being tracked by sensors and cameras.

Furthermore, per The Takeout, Cooler Screens claim that '90%+ of consumers no longer prefer traditional glass cooler doors' may be 'extremely inflated' given only two thousand people were surveyed. 

Operator: Walgreens; Kroger; CVS; GetGo, Chevron
Developer: Cooler Screens

Country: USA

Sector: Retail

Purpose: Personalise advertising

Technology: Advertising management system; Emotion recognition; Eye tracking; Facial scanning; Iris recognition; Recommendation algorithm; Voice recognition
Issue: Appropriateness/need; Privacy; Scope creep/normalisation

Transparency: Marketing; Privacy

Page info
Type: System
Published: December 2022