Wal-Mart to offer voice-activated shopping

24 August, 2017, 02:45 | Author: Valerie Burke
  • Google and Walmart Partner With Eye on Amazon

Moreover, roughly a quarter of consumers own a voice-controlled device, whether an Amazon Echo (16 percent) or Google Home (6 percent), while another 20 percent plan to purchase one in the next year.

Google now offers products from Costco and Target via its Express service in the U.S. But the addition of hundreds of thousands of items from Walmart will be the largest amount of products from one retailer, writes Marc Lore, president and CEO of Walmart eCommerce.

Here's how it'll work: Existing Walmart customers can link their Walmart account to Google in order to receive personalized shopping results based on your online and in-store Walmart purchases. Google Express lets you shop with the Google Assistant. Google and Walmart are definitely not taking things sitting down but rather than hit Amazon separately, they've chose to join forces to deliver a more powerful punch. The service will also allow customers to shop by voice for the first time. Walmart's also ramped up its in-store pick-up service by offering discounts to customers who use it. Expansion plans for 2018 include tying in Walmart's 4,700 USA stores, enabling voice-directed grocery orders and giving customers the option of store pickup at a discount. The discounter will integrating its Easy Reorder feature, which has data on customers' store and online purchases, into Google Express.

"They've made significant investments in natural language processing and artificial intelligence to deliver a powerful voice shopping experience", Lore wrote in the company blog.

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"Our new voice shopping capability. will give our customers a compelling new way to get what they need at low prices", Lore said.

"One of the primary use cases for voice shopping will be the ability to build a basket of previously-purchased everyday essential", he said. While other retailers, including Target, Kohl's and Ulta, sell on Google Express, no other company now offers the depth of products Walmart will be offering.

'Voice shopping is becoming a more important part of everyday shopping behavior, ' said Marc Lore, CEO of Walmart's USA e-commerce business.

If Jeff Bezos woke up in a cold sweat last night, it's probably because he sensed the partnership Google and Walmart announced today. In a blog post announcing the partnership, Google mentions that "there's no membership required" to get free shipping - a dig at Prime. You can tell the Assistant to order products for you using just your voice.

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