Amazon Key is unveiling two new partners for their in-car delivery service, Ford Motor Inc and Volvo.
Ford Motor Co. and Volvo are the latest car makers that are trialling in-car delivery for Amazon. The US marketplace unveiled Amazon Key in 2018, which allows products to be delivered in the back of consumer’s cars.
Amazon’s offer provides the delivery option for those who drive the cars mentioned on their eligibility list. Acting as a personal mobile locker, the delivery sends notifications to the consumer as the package makes its way to the driver.
The logistics behind the delivery are as follows: “Just order, park, and go about your day knowing that your package will be waiting in your trunk.” Consumers can begin the service by downloading the Amazon Key app, where they have access to selecting the delivery option after purchase. When parking the car, the customer must keep it in a publicly accessible area. There is a four-hour turnaround time for Amazon’s new service, with real-time notification updates from the app.
The app allows delivery drivers to unlock the consumer’s boot of the car and place the item inside, and then re-lock the vehicle. The service is aimed at those who don’t have access to a front porch or who have concerns about the security of packages being left unprotected and out in the open. The deliveries that are in-line with the delivery option can receive the service at no extra cost.
Although there are immediate safety concerns regarding the delivery process, Amazon assures that there is a lengthy, cloud-based verification process before the service is authorised. Amazon’s spokesperson says that “as long as you’re parked in a publicly accessible place, your Amazon delivery driver will bring the package right to you. No more worrying that your package will get wet sitting outside or go missing from your building’s mailroom.”
At this current time, this initiative is only available in the US. For 50 cities across the North American country, only vehicles that are manufactured from 2017 and above are legible for the delivery service. Packages above 22 kgs and are larger than 66 x 53 x 40 cm in size require a signature. The same applies to all products priced over USD$1,300 or come from a third-party seller that isn’t eligible for the in-car delivery service. If there’s an issue with the delivery, the US giant promises to work with the consumer so they correct the problem.
This is a huge step forward for e-commerce delivery services. At this current time, only a certain amount of models are eligible for the service: Ford, Lincoln, Volvo, Chevrolet, GMC, Cadillac and Buick. These cars often require an active connected car service plan, such as OnStar or On Call.
Amazon is now interested in expanding Amazon Key to some other major manufacturers such as Toyota, BMW and Audi. This initiative provides a gateway for car dealers to make their way into the e-commerce sector, with talks about Amazon sharing a mobile car washing program with the selected manufacturers. Lorin Kennedy, who works in Product Marketing at Ford says: “I think this is a great opportunity for Ford to offer its customers one more service and a little bit of a value on why [they] have a connected vehicle.”