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New Volvo tech allows deliveries to be made to parked cars

By

February 20, 2014

Volvo's 'roam delivery' system sends couriers to cars, not houses

Volvo's 'roam delivery' system sends couriers to cars, not houses

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It's kind of ironic that couriers usually attempt home deliveries during the day, while most people are away at work. Not only does this mean that those people don't get their packages as soon as they could, but it also means the couriers have to go to the time and trouble of making a second attempt on another day. Volvo wants to change that, by letting drivers use their parked cars as mobile delivery points.

The automaker's experimental "roam delivery" service is built around the existing Volvo On Call telematics app, that lets users do things like remotely activating the heating or air conditioning in their parked vehicle.

In this case, however, they provide the company making the delivery with a one-time-use digital key to their car. When the delivery person reaches the vehicle, they use that key – via their mobile device – to unlock its doors. They then put the package inside, close the doors and lock them. The key ceases to exist after that, and the driver receives a notification of the times at which the vehicle was unlocked and locked.

Couriers could also use the system to locate clients' vehicles

The system could also be used for the picking up of packages, with couriers removing specific items from the car instead of putting them in.

Volvo has tested the technology in a pilot project, reportedly with favorable reactions from the participants. There's no word on when or if the system will be rolled out for general use, although it will be presented at the Mobile World Congress next week.

Source: Volvo

About the Author
Ben Coxworth An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.   All articles by Ben Coxworth
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7 Comments

UPS will do that (or at least they have). Put the location in the address & describe the car. I've done it

SuperFool
20th February, 2014 @ 03:06 pm PST

Or they could have a one time key for your house or apartment and leave the package where intended. Gee, you could also leave a package at home for pick up, gotta be better than trying to find a car parked! Your heading in the right direction though.

Rehab
20th February, 2014 @ 05:12 pm PST

With the growth in internet shopping there is a real need to facilitate the delivery component of the transaction, though I am not sure that this is a solution that I would feel comfortable with.

If it is raining, they might be in too much of a hurry to stop and check that they have closed the tailgate/boot lid properly. So, the alarm might be prone to sounding on a regular and frequent basis, much to the annoyance of any in the vicinity.

Mel Tisdale
21st February, 2014 @ 05:38 am PST

Hmm, I winner what are the security risks as far as being able to move a vehicle with some sort of explosive device into position and then having some UPS driver be your unwitting accomplice. Sheesh I've watched too much Telly.

Paul Anthony
21st February, 2014 @ 08:58 am PST

Good idea as I live in my mobile home with no fixed abode!

Kääriäinen Heikki Haykey
21st February, 2014 @ 03:35 pm PST

Worry about theft of stuff inside car, otherwise Great Service or give to driver on way out to car or at car??

Must for LA CA, So CA area

Stephen N Russell
21st February, 2014 @ 04:47 pm PST

Someone already mentioned the explosive planting. I'll add a few more. Drug distributor could use random tourists as unsuspecting mules. Car theft. Parking poaching. Corpse disposal for the Mafia. At least with home deliveries, no one (supposedly) is entering your house. It's an uneasy feeling to get back to your car not knowing who has been in it while you were away...or for that matter, if someone is still in it. I suppose those risks exist with locked cars we have now, but delivery approach seems to make the aforementioned questionable endeavors much more convenient.

sk8dad
24th February, 2014 @ 01:29 pm PST
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