Chicago, Illinois – Regulars will soon be shopping using just their voice, thanks to Wal-Mart collaborating with Google.
Wal-Mart is taking the risk of using voice-shopping technology dominated by Amazon.com – taking shopping wars on to the next level. The multinational retailing corporation will be offering thousands of its items through the Google Assistant platform, which uses the voice technology.
Marc Lore, the retail megastore’s Head of E-commerce, shared the information through his blog. The program is expected to begin by late September. He added that they would be offering more choices for shoppers online compared to other platforms. Lore joined the company after it bought his company, Jet.com.
Amazon has dominated the industry, with their “Echo” device getting 72.2 % of the 2016 market share. Alexa, the online shopping website’s voice aide, is the one to compete against the new platform that Google is offering. So, when a shopper asks Google for a product, it will guess which you would like to buy.
However, Google Express’ General Manager Brian Elliott stated that the partnership would remove the hassle of the shopper going back and forth because of the app’s guessing. The platform could get a hold of the customer’s previous shopping activities, therefore making the process easier. This would be the first among the voice technology applications offered in the market. Google Express will start offering deliveries, for free, for every purchase that is more than the store’s minimum threshold.
However, that is just a small part of what Wal-Mart will be offering. Next year, the shopping tycoon aims to upgrade all 4,700 branches and create more choices using the voice-shopping technology. Lore said that they target adding order pickups and fresh grocery shopping.
Currently, the retail company is pilot testing a delivery service in partnership with Uber. The project will be extended to other major cities within the week.