Amazon Launches Prime Now, One-Hour Delivery Service
- by Christofer Oberst
SEATTLE, WA - Amazon has unveiled Prime Now, a new service that aims to deliver goods in as little as one hour. Could AmazonFresh be the next to offer one-hour delivery for produce?
Over the course of the year, AmazonFresh has expanded to a number of major urban areas including San Diego, New York City, and most recently, Philadelphia. In that time, Amazon has been experimenting with same-day grocery delivery, having expanded its partnership with USPS. Other businesses, such as Google Express, Instacart, Peapod, and even Uber, are all fighting to gain traction in an increasingly competitive grocery delivery market. Amazon’s Prime Now is taking the competition a step further with one-hour delivery.
Last October, I wondered if Amazon’s first-ever brick-and-mortar store would serve as a fresh produce hub for AmazonFresh in New York. The revelation of Prime Now seems to shed some light on the matter. According to the Washington Post, Amazon says that a portion of that building will be used as a delivery hub for Prime Now orders. Amazon has so far declined to disclose inventory specifics at the building, leaving the place of produce in Prime Now ambiguous. Still, it’s not entirely out of the question just yet.
Amazon says Prime Now currently offers more than 25,000 items for delivery, and it’s taking requests for items that it does not yet carry. Eligible products include various grocery items such as cereals, canned goods, and juices, as well as “everyday essentials” like batteries or paper towels.
Prime Now is exclusive for Amazon Prime members and is only available for customers in Manhattan, though Amazon promises to expand the service to other cities next year, according to Wall Street Journal.
The one thing that remains clear is that grocery delivery is becoming an increasingly fierce market. With the popularity and expansion that AmazonFresh has seen so far, it may just be produce that will keep the company ahead of its competitors. Given the infrastructure, I still wonder if AmazonFresh would adopt a similar one-hour delivery service.
I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.
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