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Source: Original article by Jeff Wells @JeffWellsWH, First Published on Grocery Dive
Walmart is introducing a new pilot program for grocery delivery into your refrigerator. Customers must have smart-lock technology in place at their homes in order to provide Walmart employees' access. Kansas City, Pittsburgh and Vero Beach will be the first three cities to try out this new option. Walmart employees will wear cameras from which customers can watch as their groceries are being delivered in real-time.
The concept worries me a bit for all of the obvious reasons: the intrusion of privacy, creating opportunities for criminals to game the system, and my favorite, what happens when someone forgets to tell napping grandma and she lights up the delivery person with pepper spray (or worse)?
I can only guess that the current trend of sacrificing security for convenience will continue, and hence, the pilot cities will prove successful for Walmart. In the same fashion that a gas station sells gasoline cheap in hopes of luring you into their convenience store, I expect that Walmart will eventually introduce a private label smart-lock technology to be sold at or below cost to lure us all into their delivery service.
For my supply chain friends, can you imagine practicing vendor managed inventory at the consumer location (i.e. refrigerator)? Smart refrigerators are advancing at a fast pace and it may only be a matter of time before a refrigerator type of EDI data will be making its way into an inventory forecasting and demand planning system near you.
So, what say you, friends? Would you be interested in grocery delivery into your refrigerator?
- Jason Averill, EVP - Avercast, LLC