A user on TikTok has gone viral after sharing a free sample machine they discovered at Sam’s Club.
In a video with over 3.7 million views as of Saturday, TikTok user Brandy (@inkdmomma84) shows the machine in action.
The video starts after a sample has already been requested. About 40 seconds later, a single bag of “Little Bites” muffins drops down from the machine, where it is quickly removed.
@inkdmomma84 Sam’s club has new sample machines #samsclub #kcmo #littlebitesmuffins #littlebitessnacks #KAYKissCountdown #2022tiktok #newyearseveeve #muffins #shoppersoftiktok #groceryshopping #ihateit #momlife #samplemachine #sample #chocolatechip ♬ Spongebob Tomfoolery – Dante9k Remix – David Snell
The machine in question appears to be a “Freeosk.”
According to the company’s website, the Freeosk works by having customers scan a QR code on their app. Once the code has been recognized, the Freeosk will dispense the product currently on offer.
Freeosk says that it has machines not only at Sam’s Club but at other shopping destinations like Safeway and Albertsons as well.
Numerous commenters under Brandy’s video also noted that the machines aren’t new, with some claiming that they had seen machines like it in their local Sam’s Club for years.
Across the comments section, many users complained about the perceived long wait time for a packet to dispense.
“That took an obscene amount of time,” wrote a user.
“Wait time is too long, I’ve already moved on to another machine,” stated another.
“The machine said ima work real slow with this minimum pay,” joked a third.
However, Brandy notes in a comment that the machine may have just been warming up, as she did not experience a similar wait time when getting another sample.
“We think it had to warm up bc my boyfriend did it right after and it spit it right ou[t],” she detailed.
That said, other users shared negative experiences they’ve had with similar machines.
“My sams + walmarts have had them for years & they always sound like theyre on their last leg about to explode & take 10 years to dispense anything,” claimed a user.
“Mine has give me 18 ads before it pops out just for it to say ‘sorry none left for today,’” alleged a second.
“My sams club has one of these and for Christmas was giving candy canes. It took forever and refreshed then said I already got my sample. Never got any,” said a further TikToker.
However, others thought the idea of the machine was a good one.
“Honestly kinda smart so people don’t sit there and take a bunch of them in a few seconds,” noted a user.
In a TikTok direct message conversation with the Daily Dot, Brandy said she’d never seen these machines prior to recording the video.
“We hadn’t ever seen one, even though people commented they’d been around for years,” she wrote.
She also noted that she faced similar issues with the machines as some commenters.
“We’ve tried the last few times we’ve stopped in and they’ve been out of order…3 different stores on 3 different days,” she detailed.
As far as actually getting the treats went, she said the process was simple.
“I scanned my Sam’s club membership on the app and then it asked for my email…and then the process you saw [in the video],” she explained. “My boyfriend did it right after my daughter and his spit right out, after the scanning and email entering…no weird noises or ‘warming up.’”
Concerning the wait time, Brandy said that commenters were overreacting.
“It really wasn’t that long…people are just impatient,” she said. “We thought it was kind of cool, but we definitely prefer having a live person there. Although my daughter didn’t mind having a whole 4 mini muffins to snack on while we shopped.”
We’ve reached out to Sam’s Club via the media relations contact form.
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*First Published: Feb 4, 2023, 3:32 pm CST
Braden Bjella is a culture writer. His work can be found in Mixmag, Electronic Beats, Schön! magazine, and more.