A shopper looks through the produce section in a newly opened Walmart Neighborhood Market in Chicago, September 21, 2011. REUTERS/Jim Young
BENTONVILLE, Ark. (Reuters) – Walmart Inc will restart a service that offers the delivery of groceries directly to shoppers’ refrigerators – part of its attempts to find unconventional ways to offer cheap and rapid delivery of online orders.
Walmart had started testing the service in 2017 with smart security company August Home and third-party courier firm Deliv, which used gig workers to make the deliveries. It ended the test a year later.
This time, Walmart will use its own workers, who have been with the retailer for at least a year, and use its own vehicles. Walmart will also use smart entry technology and a proprietary, wearable camera to access shoppers’ homes, the company’s head of U.S. ecommerce, Marc Lore, said, letting customers control access into their home and watch a delivery remotely.
Starting this fall, the service will be available to over 1 million customers across three cities – Kansas City, Missouri; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; and Vero Beach, Florida.
Walmart recently launched one-day delivery without a shipping fee, weeks after Amazon.com Inc announced a similar offer. It has also been using several third-party courier firms to make such deliveries.
Reporting by Nandita Bose in Bentonville, Arkansas; Editing by Leslie Adler