The person who delivers your next Amazon order could be you, or your nosy neighbor. The online retailer is working on a new service, currently dubbed On My Way, that would pay everyday people to deliver packages in some circumstances, The Wall Street Journal reports. There’s no word on when the new service might come out. There’s also a chance Amazon will kill the idea, like Walmart did in 2013.
Many other companies are also turning to the crowd to enlist a fleet of couriers including Postmates, TaskRabbit, and, most recently, Uber.
Similar to Uber, Amazon’s On My Way service will be based around an app, according to the Journal. Presumably, the app will alert registered couriers to packages that are available for pick-up.
In order to facilitate a wave of independent couriers delivering goods in their hatchbacks, Amazon hopes to set-up storage facilities at retailers in urban areas, the Journal says. It’s not clear if that means Amazon hopes big box stores will rent out space to a competitor, or if drivers would pick-up deliveries at Amazon Locker locations such as 7-Eleven.
The impact on you at home: Amazon hopes to get control of its shipping costs with On My Way, but it’s anybody’s guess if the crowdsourced scheme would also translate into cheaper shipping costs for customers. For all we know, On My Way could be yet another perk for Prime members. For anyone pondering a life as an Amazon courier, however, you might want to slow down. The Journal says Amazon hasn’t decided yet whether it would pay drivers cash or credits for Amazon purchases.