Taking the purchasing process to the next level, Retail giant Amazon has filed a patent for shipping products based on prediction of what the buyers would purchase even before they have ordered it. Amazon calls it “Anticipatory package shipping” and had filed this patent in August 2012, and was granted the solo right on December 24 last year. This is a cool idea which seems to be inspired from Google’s auto-complete feature on its search bar but this time applied in eCommerce. This technology is based on a number of parameters consisting of Customer’s purchase history, saved searches,wish lists and general search data.
Here the idea is to minimize human involvement and automatically determine the requirements of customers. The patent intends to route the buyable products to a certain geographical area using buying patterns/preferences expressed via surveys/questionnaires, habits and more. Amazon has said that they might consider giving customers discounts or the items, or even simply giving it to them for nothing. “Delivering the package to the given customer as a promotional gift may be used to build goodwill” the patent reads. As Amazon takes in more and more data from customers, the predictions might become increasingly accurate.
This is not the first time Amazon has tried to revolutionize its delivery system. In December the company announced plans to use ‘octocopter’ mini-drones to deliver goods to US customers in just half an hour. Drones will soon be able to deliver packages that weigh up to 5lbs (2.3kg), which represents roughly 86 percent of packages that Amazon delivers.