You Can Do All Your Walmart Shopping on Google
The big box store has teamed up with Google to let hungry shoppers buy their groceries at home, through Google Assistant, the virtual concierge that lives on the Google Home smart speaker and a few other devices, TechCrunch reports.
The partnership means that you could theoretically wander around your kitchen, peeking in your cupboards and refrigerator, and rattle off a list of groceries. Google Assistant would then place your order with Walmart’s Easy Reorder program and have it delivered through Google Express, once the purchase hits Walmart’s $35 minimum. Two days later, your groceries will show up at your door, without ever having to leave your house, or even put on pants.
The best part is that the service is free. Google Express just ditched its $10 per month or $95 per year membership fees, and will pick up your order and deliver them to your house, between one to three days later. That means people can get products from Target, Costco, Bed Bath & Beyond, PetSmart, Walgreens, and many more delivered from Google Express for free.
While Walmart already offered free two-day shipping on any order over $35, to compete with Amazon Prime, its Google Express partnership means Walmart doesn’t have to invest time or money in voice computing, as TechCrunch notes. For some reason tech companies are convinced we all want to shop by incanting our grocery list into the air after muttering the magic words, “Okay, Google.” (Or "Alexa," if you pick up Amazon's handy $20 Dash Wand.)
Still, the idea of just reading off a list of ingredients for a recipe and having Google place the order sounds convenient and freakishly futuristic, but waiting two days sounds …slow. Next year, Walmart plans to make it possible to place your order via Google Assistant and then pick up your grocery order at the store, which could speed up the grocery-shopping process, but two days seems a long time to wait for your milk, Cap’n Crunch, and balsamic vinegar to show up, especially when Target is testing same day delivery and Amazon already offers it in many locations. PLus, with Amazon's purchase of Whole Foods and Alexa smart service, Walmart may still have an uphill battle in its ongoing war to gain your grocery loyalty.