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The Evolution of Vending Machines

By Lili Gomes @_roselili

Evolution of Vending Machines

Vending machines, which have assumed such an integral role in modern society, have added a lot to the convenience of mankind. However, you would be surprised to know these wonderful systems are not recent innovations. In fact, evidences of the first ever vending machine can be traced back to the era of Egyptian pharaohs. It was a masterpiece designed in 215 B.C. by Hero of Alexandria, an engineer and mathematician of Greek origin. Hero’s invention was capable of dispensing water in exchange of coins.

It was not until the 1800s, however, that the commercial world got to use vending machines. The earliest units in London dispensed post cards and then a bookshop owner and publisher created something that would give out books. Soon after, these units started to be used within USA to sell gums in subways. By and by, vending machines came to used for offering soda in attractive cups and later on, cold soft drinks. In the year 1937, Coca Cola invented the Vendolator, which was followed by creation of equipment in 1946 that could serve coffee as well. These units exist even to this day, but health experts suggest vending machine brew contains more calories  than regular java.

At a certain point, during the 1950s, there were even vending machines that sold life insurance policies at American airports. These policies assured cover for death in case a person died in a plane crash. However, this process did not last for long and finally became obsolete after a couple of decades. But soon after in 1961, machines that could dispense canned soda were introduced in the market. In the year 1972, Polyvend created an equipment for glass front to sell snacks. It proved to be a blessing for people who needed something to munch on before hopping into a train or while walking down the road.

The way that vending machines have increased convenience in our daily lives is nothing less than revolution. Office workers in Melbourne can hardly go on for a day without coffee and vending products. There are units in supermarkets selling frozen food. The ones in subways provide a variety of items ranging from chips and biscuits to soft drinks, soda and even water. While their earlier versions accepted money only, the latest ones can accept credit cards as well as bill denominations. Surprisingly enough, there are systems which serve fresh hot meals on demand in restaurants.

The Evolution of Vending Machines

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