Smart doormen for safe shopping: MediaMarkt and Saturn fitting their stores with digital access control systems

  • Smart Entrance Manager from xplace will monitor the number of customers in each store and control customer access
  • Implementation throughout Germany to be completed by the beginning of June
  • Planning underway for the rollout of digital access systems across Europe

Ingolstadt, 13.05.2020: At MediaMarkt’s and Saturn’s stores, compliance with the permitted number of customers will soon be quickly and effectively regulated using digital entrance control. The automatic systems will help to implement the official regulations in force during the coronavirus pandemic safely and reliably. The solution is based on the Smart Entrance Manager from xplace GmbH, which records the number of people entering and leaving stores in real time using AI-controlled sensors. This information will be used to show on a display at the entrance how many customers can still enter the store. The display uses a simple colour scheme based on the traffic light principle. Customers will also be reminded of the need for social distancing in-store. Voice messages will draw attention to the information on the display. The system will thus ease the burden on store employees and also help to reduce the risk of infection for customers and staff. Following successful trials in Hamburg and Göttingen, the digital access control system will now be installed in all of the approximately 430 MediaMarkt and Saturn stores all over Germany by the beginning of June. In addition, MediaMarktSaturn is planning to roll out similar systems in its consumer electronics stores throughout Europe.


“Digital admission management offers us reliable assistance regarding compliance with infection control measures. Initial tests have shown that our customers welcome transparency about the number of people in a store by means of a display at the entrance. This creates more understanding if they need to wait. Moreover, this digital access system has enabled us to respond quickly to the increased requirements brought about by the corona crisis. After all, the health and safety of our customers and employees is our top priority. And this is something we can offer reliably and transparently thanks to our ‘smart doorman’ while at the same time significantly reducing the time and effort required to comply with the relevant regulations. As a result, our store assistants will be able to focus on their main job: advising our customers,” explained Florian Gietl, CEO of MediaMarktSaturn Germany.

Modular system for rapid integration

xplace’s Smart Entrance Kit is based on a modular design so that it can be adapted to the individual circumstances of each store. Even if stores have multiple entrances, information is reliably synchronized. The plug-and-play solution is immediately ready for use on different displays. Store managers have dashboards on which they can keep tabs on the current number of customers. If necessary, they can also adjust the maximum number of people allowed in at any time. A reporting function recording data for, say, public authorities or internal use is also available. No personal data is collected. Once the pandemic is over, the sensors and displays will still be able to be used separately for digital customer information and various other analyses. “It’s particularly important to us that our solutions are simple and effective, yet also offer added value by means of alternative functions after the corona pandemic,” declared Marco Wassermann, CEO and co-founder of xplace GmbH.

Rollout planned across Europe

By implementing these and comparable solutions internationally, MediaMarktSaturn is also underlining its flexibility, especially in difficult times. xplace’s solution will soon be fitted at stores throughout Switzerland and Poland and is already being tested in the Netherlands. Furthermore, planning is underway for the installation of digital access systems in stores in Italy and Spain.

A video showing how the system works can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tS6Cv6ILU9Y