As Amazon’s Whole Foods acquisition leaves it poised to single-handedly shape the future of online grocery buying, Jet.com, the e-commerce site purchased by Walmart in a massive deal last year, reportedly has its own plan in the works to make deliveries faster and easier – at least in New York.
That’s according to TechCrunch, which reports Jet is teaming up with smart access provider Latch to install the latter’s Latch R access system in 1,000 New York apartment buildings housing 100,000 residents.
A Latch rep confirmed the installation and said there will be "technical integration" between Latch and Jet.
According to its website, Latch allows users to unlock doors with an iOS or Android smartphone, smartcard or special doorcode and it provides a visual audit trail of guests, along with management tools to easily add users and share access. That includes time-limited doorcodes for deliveries, not unlike Volvo’s in-car delivery service, which uses digital keys to allow one-time access to vehicles.
The Latch system retails for $399 per device with a two-year minimum contract, but Latch says it is currently only supporting sales for enterprise customers. According to TechCrunch, however, the installation in New York will be financed jointly by Jet and Latch and the units will be set up to provide access to Jet’s delivery partners.
A Jet rep was not available by deadline.