Walmart and August, a smart lock manufacturer, are partnering on a new delivery service which will let customers authorize delivery guys to put perishable items inside their fridge in the kitchen while they are away. The two firms are currently testing the in-home delivery service in some select markets.
From the findings of the trial Walmart will be able to decide how to price the service compared to the typical deliveries. The retail giant is also aiming to find out what aspects of the services customers are comfortable with and what they are not comfortable with.
The service has been made possible by the smart locks developed by August Homes. This is because these locks let homeowners use the management app to authorize other people to get into their homes via their mobile devices. Use of these locks has made it possible for Walmart’s customers to be notified when a delivery guy arrives at their home and then let them in. If they want, the home owners also have the ability to monitor every step the delivery guy makes inside their home. And when the delivery guy leaves the home owners are then notified that their doors have been locked.
“As the homeowner, I’m in control of the experience the entire time. I’m watching the entire process from start to finish from my home security cameras,” wrote Sloan Eddleston, the e-commerce strategy and business operations vice president of Wal-Mart, on the giant retailer’s blog.
While Walmart is the only business organization that is currently suing the smart locks to aid its in-home delivery service, other retailers and firms are likely to follow suit especially if the service is well received by customers. If the service turns out to be successful there is likely to be a wider adoption of smart locks. So far some of the benefits of smart locks have included making it possible for home owners not to carry keys around unnecessarily at the risk of losing them. They have also made it possible for home owners to designate family members of friends who can be allowed into their homes.
Those have been marginal benefits but the in-home delivery service is opening up new possibilities. This is because having a smart lock now means that in the event that one required grocery deliveries, they would not need to restrict the times the delivery can be made to when they would be physically at home.