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Amazon gains patent for shipping items before orders are completed

updated 06:34 pm EST, Sun January 19, 2014

Anticipatory shipping patent directs products to customers mid-delivery

Amazon may start shipping items to customers before an order is completed in the future, if a recently-granted patent is anything to go by. The patent by the retailer for a "Method and system for anticipatory package shipping" was granted on Christmas Eve, with the proposed system potentially lowering the delivery times for customer orders.

The filing explains that Amazon could decide on items to ship to specific locations based on a number of metrics, such as previous orders in a region, product searches, and times spent by users on a product page, reports the Wall Street Journal. Amazon would box and ship predicted items to shipment hubs in certain areas, though not applying a final customer address sticker to the box until an order is completed.



Pre-sending orders is only one way that Amazon is looking towards speeding up deliveries to customers. In recent months, it has expanded its AmazonFresh same-day grocery delivery service to San Francisco, and showed a possible drone-based delivery system. After Christmas, the retailer revealed it had added another million subscribers to its Prime delivery service in just the third week of December alone.



By Electronista Staff
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  1. qazwart

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 04-10-01

    It's coming: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HA_gwzx39LQ

  1. reader50

    Administrator

    Joined: 06-01-00

    Patents are supposed to be innovative. Which part of this one brings something new and inobvious to the table?

    Based on products people are looking at, Amazon may ship that product to their nearest hub, and ship the rest of the way if an order is placed. If I wanted to pre-ship to customers, I'd do it ... the same way. Shipping all the way to customer before they buy wouldn't work so good for the bottom line, and storing packages on the delivery truck doesn't work so good either.

    Maybe I'm missing something, but this feels like another "shopping cart" patent.

  1. Arne_Saknussemm

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 04-05-11

    "Patents are supposed to be innovative."

    Rounded corners patent ring any bells?

    It's the patent system, it is, and has been broken for a long time now

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