Walmart has launched a new shopping service that will allow customers to order by text. Better still, they don’t even have to come into the store ⏤ the products will be delivered either same- or next-day. The new program is called ‘Jetblack’ and, unlike an app or a website, it’s designed to feel more conversational. Customers text in what they need and an A.I.-driven “personalized shopper” will offer recommendations and reviews.
Customers can even send photos of what they want and a Jetblack assistant will try to find it. After texting their shopping list to Jetblack, the program processes the order and ships everything out. And if Walmart doesn’t have an item in stock, Jetblack will even (weirdly) check other outlets to try and locate it.
This highly-innovative program makes sense for the company. Walmart has been battling with Amazon, which has dominated the online retail market thanks to low prices and fast shipping, for awhile, even going so far as to match Prime’s popular 2-day delivery. If successful, Jetblack may finally put Walmart a step ahead of Amazon.
The only problem? The innovative initiative is only available to shoppers in New York for the foreseeable future. The company wants to test drive the pilot program before rolling it out to the rest of the country.