Tuesday, September 29, 2015

crowdsourced package delivery

TechCrunch | Amazon looked at buying Postmates earlier this year, but in the end it built a service that will go head to head in competing with it. The e-commerce giant today took the wraps off Flex, a new on-demand delivery service that relies not on traditional couriers, but ordinary people to bring the packages to you.
The online retailer is offering workers the ability to make between $18 and $25 per hour by delivering packages for Amazon using their own vehicle and a smartphone app that helps them route their deliveries.
The service, which is now live in Seattle, is initially focused on hiring couriers for Amazon’s one-hour delivery service Amazon Prime Now, though the company says that in the future, other types of packages may be delivered, as well.
However, for the time being, it appears the rollout of Amazon Flex is focused on augmenting the labor pool for managing the speedier Prime Now deliveries.
Seattle is actually one of the more recent markets to support Prime Now, and using “gig economy” workers isn’t the only new thing Amazon is testing in the company’s hometown. The Seattle region is also the first location where Amazon added the option to deliver beer, wine and liquor on-demand through its Prime Now application.
In addition, Amazon says that the Flex program will soon arrive to other Prime Now markets, including New York, Baltimore, Miami, Dallas, Austin, Chicago, Indianapolis, Atlanta and Portland.

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