Amazon isn’t giving up on its Key home delivery service. Rather than letting couriers in through your front door, Amazon wants you to open up your garage. The company announced its new Key for Garage expansion at CES, a new variation on its home delivery service that allows couriers to securely deliver packages where you park your cars or keep all your junk.
Prime members can take advantage of the service, but you’ll need a few pieces of hardware. Amazon collaborated with myQ for Key for Garage, allowing anyone with a myQ-compatible smart garage door opener or door-controlling hub (like those from Chamberlain and LiftMaster) to connect their systems to the Amazon Key app. When a courier is scheduled to deliver a package, the Key service will remotely unlock and open your garage door and close and lock it again once the package has been delivered.
Like with Amazon’s other Key services, users receive real-time alerts when packages are being delivered and when garage doors are opening. Amazon also verifies that the correct courier is present with the proper package at the scheduled time before opening the garage door. Those with compatible smart cameras, like Amazon’s Cloud Cam, can watch as couriers (and others, like family members) enter and exit the garage.
Amazon announced its Key delivery service in 2017 and rolled it out to homes last year. The company hoped that it would be a more secure way for customers to receive packages while combating porch package theft. While it’s unclear how many Prime customers actually use Key for Home, Amazon’s numerous expansions signal the necessity for other secure delivery locations that aren’t the inside of a customer’s home.
Amazon first expanded Key to cars, allowing couriers to remotely unlock the trunk of your car to place packages inside. Now Amazon has Key for Garage and the new Key for Business, the latter of which gives couriers a special key fob that can unlock buildings to allow them to make deliveries even when no one from the business is present. It can also be used for residences, allowing staff to let couriers into the building to deliver packages to residents, eliminating the need for staff to manually provide access every time a package needs to be delivered.
While many consider their garages as separate from their homes (and some are, literally, separated from the house), many customers will still raise their eyebrows at Amazon and its Key for Garage service. The service may be available for all Prime members, but it requires a lot of money (getting a smart garage door opener and a security camera will set you back at least $300) and a lot of trust in Amazon-employed couriers in order for it to be as useful as it promises.
Amazon Key for Garage is slated to roll out in Q2 2019.
More Info: arstechnica.com