Grocery

Walmart Wants to Deliver Groceries Straight to Your Fridge

September 25, 2017

On Friday of last week, retail titan Walmart announced that it’s piloting a rather inventive new delivery program. Retrieving groceries can be a chore for us harried busybodies, so Walmart has devised the ultimate solution to this problem: It will deliver groceries straight to your fridge when you aren’t home.

The program is the result of a partnership between Walmart, smart home lock company August Home, and same-day delivery service Deliv. It's got many moving parts: After you place an order on Walmart's site, a Deliv driver (who’s subjected to a rigorous screening process) will fetch your items and bring them to your home. If no one’s there to answer your door, the courier will have a one-time passcode to open an August smart lock and enter your house.

The courier will then carry the groceries to the kitchen and put them in the fridge. You don’t forfeit control, necessarily: As the transaction unfolds, you’re constantly getting phone notifications that the delivery is underway. August gives you the option of watching the process in real time through its mobile app as it's recorded by home security cameras.

This program is still in its embryonic stages, as Walmart is testing it out with August customers in Silicon Valley. As it stands, the project certainly toes quite an uneasy line between innovation and invasiveness. Walmart has taken the consumer desire for convenience to a vaguely dystopian degree. Opting in to the service requires a bucketload of capital for August’s home lock services and a lot of trust in a stranger. The idea may appeal to some constituencies more than others: Say, a set of folks who already have service workers, from cleaning crews to babysitters, visiting their homes when they aren’t there.

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For those of us who don’t fall within those demographics, I guess we’ll have to stick to lugging groceries home and sticking them in our fridges ourselves, no matter how crammed our schedules are.

What do you think of this program: Is it way too invasive or totally innovative? Make your voice heard in the comments.

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3 Comments

SMSF September 25, 2017
Way too invasive for me! And frankly this sounds like yet another hacking scandal waiting to happen.
 
duckfat September 25, 2017
No thanks. I prefer to choose my own produce. meat, and fish and maintain the freedom to change my mind or be inspired by what i see in front of me.
 
AntoniaJames September 25, 2017
Amazon Prime Now stands a much better chance of grabbing this market. You can order within a 2-hour window and they notify you when the delivery is nearby. I only use it for grocery (center aisle) items, some refrigerated commodity items, and the occasional household item like ziplock bags, that I can't get from my excellent subscription service Grove Collaborative https://www.grove.co/home (branded in its early life as ePantry). With Amazon Prime Now, the cold items come in a thermal bag with an ice pack inside. Such a great service! I cannot see myself ever doing the August Home routine . . . . certainly not in the house / neighborhood in which I live now. ;o)