UPS is testing a program that would eliminate the most annoying part of shopping online

UPS

  • UPS announced a partnership with Latch for a pilot program in New York City.
  • Latch provides secure entry for delivery drivers to deliver packages inside multi-family residences.
  • UPS is looking for a way to cut down package theft when delivering to apartment buildings without doormen.

UPS is looking to up the ante on package delivery for urban addresses.

The logistics and delivery company announced on Tuesday it is partnering with Latch, a company that provides access systems for apartment buildings and multi-family homes that don’t have an attendant. Buildings with a Latch system can allow the UPS driver in to deliver the packages safely inside, away from would-be thieves.

“It can be difficult to securely deliver packages in high-density, multi-family urban residences, especially when people are not at home,” Jerome Roberts, UPS’s head of global product innovation, said in a statement. “Smart access devices give us a keyless way to deliver packages to buildings and leave packages safely in lobbies or building package rooms.”

The pilot started in March for some Manhattan addresses and expanded to Brooklyn just recently. If the pilot goes well, it could expand nationally.

The system works by sending a unique credential to the handheld device UPS drivers carry. They’re then able to unlock the building’s outside door and enter. It only works for that specific building when it is expecting a delivery.

The drivers are only able to access the building’s public areas — not individual apartments.

The partnership with Latch would be the latest in package delivery and e-commerce companies attempting to cut down on package theft by delivering to secure addresses. Amazon has rolled out its Amazon Key in-home delivery system, and even expanded it to allow delivery to some car’s trunks as well.

Jet.com, an e-commerce focused subsidiary of Walmart, also has a pilot program with Latch for delivery in the New York area.

As more Americans shop online, package theft becomes an ever-larger issue. Delivering to secure areas is the principal way companies are trying to combat it.

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