In its constant quest for speedier delivery, Amazon is considering paying normal people to deliver packages as part of a crowdsourced delivery program, sources tell The Wall Street Journal’s Greg Bensinger.
The service - internally called “On My Way” - would recruit retailers in urban areas to store packages.
Then regular people wanting to make deliveries could use an app to see where to pick up and drop off goods as they were going about their day.
Bensinger’s sources warn that Amazon is considering the program but that its efforts could end up getting tabled.
After all, there are a lot of big challenges.
It’s unclear who would be responsible if packages disappear or get damaged (Amazon notoriously doesn’t even trust its own warehouse workers not to steal from it).
is the process of obtaining needed services, ideas, or content by soliciting contributions from a large group of people, and especially from an online community, rather than from traditional employees or suppliers.
The company would also have to strike a balance between paying wannabe-delivery people enough to incentivize them, with a cost structure that didn’t break the bank.
Amazon’s shipping costs swelled about 31% last year.
In 2014, Amazon briefly tested using Uber and taxi drivers to deliver packages for about $5 each in San Francisco, but didn’t expand the experiment, sources tell Bensinger.
Currently, Amazon uses bike messengers in New York City to deliver packages for its Prime Now one-hour delivery service and its own delivery network in other parts of the country.
Uber itself has been struggling to create its own logistical network for delivering food, groceries, and other goods, and has six partners so far. Startups like Postmates and Instacart are also tackling same-day delivery, and Google has a hat in the ring, too, with Shopping Express.
Source: Business Insider
Related: Is Uber Really Alt Transportation?
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