Web

Amazon’s latest idea for deliveries? Newspaper trucks, apparently

amazon may use newspaper trucks for deliveries flex
Amazon is continuing to look at every conceivable method for getting packages to people. Prime Air delivery drones are at least a few years off, so in the meantime the e-commerce giant is looking at an option that’s been around for years – newspaper trucks.

The company recently conducted tests using newspaper carriers, people with knowledge of the matter told the Wall Street Journal this week.

The publication said that while print subscriptions have fallen over recent years, “newspaper trucks still wend their way through every neighborhood of a major city, putting them close to Amazon customers.”

The trial reportedly involved Tribune Publishing, which publishes the Chicago Tribune and the LA Times. However, deliveries are believed to have taken place only in Chicago.

The test service was apparently halted within a couple of weeks after Tribune cited courier-related tax issues as a barrier to its continuation. Still, it seems this hasn’t deterred Amazon, which is now thought to be considering approaching other newspaper firms with a view to launching similar trials.

Delivery options

Amazon is constantly evaluating its options when it comes to getting ordered items into the hands of its customers.

Some of its thinking was revealed in a job ad posted last year as it sought delivery drivers for its own last-mile service.

“Amazon is growing at a faster speed than UPS and FedEx, who are responsible for shipping the majority of our packages,” the ad said. “At this rate Amazon cannot continue to rely solely on the solutions provided through traditional logistics providers. To do so will limit our growth, increase costs and impede innovation in delivery capabilities.”

Indeed, the company is determined never again to be caught out in the way it was two years ago when its Christmas deliveries were delayed as the big-name shipping companies struggled to cope with the unexpectedly huge amount of packages in their systems. With complaints rolling in, Amazon felt compelled to offer affected customers $20 gift cards by way of apology, at the same time saying it was “reviewing the performance of the delivery carriers.”

Keen to expand the availability of its Prime Now service, which offers one-hour delivery on tens of thousand of items, Amazon recently launched an Uber-like system called Flex that gives regular folks the opportunity to deliver packages using their own cars, with drivers paid up to $25 an hour.

Other Amazon moves geared toward improving the efficiency of its delivery operation include using the NY City subway and bike-based couriers. It’s also believed to be evaluating the viability of a click-and-collect system involving its distribution centers, while Amazon Lockers at 7-Eleven stores already give customers the chance to pick up packages at a time that suits them.

Meanwhile, Amazon engineers are continuing work on the company’s ambitious Prime Air delivery drone, though regulatory hurdles mean it’s likely to be some time before we see drones dropping off items in customers’ yards.

Smart Home

Kroger supermarket chain tests driverless grocery deliveries in Arizona

Kroger and autonomous delivery innovator Nuro began a pilot program in Scottdale, Arizona, for grocery home deliveries with Prius cars to test the self-driving concept. The first tests do not use the purpose-built Nuro vehicle.
Home Theater

Get your favorite sports in 4K and HDR with live TV streaming service FuboTV

If you’re looking for a live TV streaming service, but sports are the main draw for you, FuboTV could be exactly what you’re looking for. We’ve got everything you need to know about it right here.
Home Theater

Cutting the cord? Let us help you find the best service for live TV streaming

There's a long list of live TV streaming services available to help you cut the cord and replace your traditional TV subscription. Each is different in important ways, and this guide will help you find the best one for you.
Mobile

Google One subscriptions offer more cloud storage for low prices, other perks

Can't get enough storage on Google Drive, Photos, or Gmail? Google One is the new way to boost your cloud storage. But it's not just about more space -- Google One comes with a loads of benefits.
Computing

Network routers with roaming enabled are likely susceptible to a new attack

Jens Steube discovered a new method to break into network routers while researching new ways to attack the WPA3 security standard. He stumbled onto an attack technique capable of cracking hashed WPA-PSK passwords.
Computing

Saving your favorite YouTube videos for posterity is quick, easy with these tools

Learning how to download YouTube videos is easier than you might think. There are plenty of great tools you can use, both online and offline. These are our favorites and a step by step guide on how to use them.
Computing

Hacker plays ‘Doom’ on John McAfee’s ‘unhackable’ BitFi Bitcoin wallet

The BitFi hardware cryptocurrency wallet isn't as unhackable as John McAfee claims. A 15-year-old bedroom hacker has managed to get Doom running on the device, suggesting its days may soon be numbered.
Computing

Having issues with Microsoft Edge? Here's how to fix the most common problems

If you're feeling frustrated with Microsoft Edge, or have run into a serious problem with Windows 10's built-in browser, take a look at these common issues and the solutions that can help you get back on track.
Music

Spotify vs. Pandora: Which music streaming service is better for you?

Which music streaming platform is best for you? We pit Spotify versus Pandora, two mighty streaming services with on-demand music and massive catalogs, comparing every facet of the two services to help you decide which is best.
Photography

The best place to print photos online: Seven top photo labs

Have you been looking around for the best place to print out your favorite photos online? Don't fret, we've pored through dozens of options and narrowed it down to the seven best.
Computing

The browser-based Monero miner Coinhive generates around $250,000 each month

Despite a fall in cryptocurrency mining, the Coinhive Monero miner is still highly active, generating around $250,000 each month. Coinhive also contributes 1.18 percent of the total mining power behind the Monero blockchain.
Computing

The Andromeda botnet still lingers as nations struggle to clean infected PCs

A report by Fortinet suggests that although the FBI and Europe ended the Andromeda botnet’s reign in late 2017, there are still infected PCs. Cleaning up these PCs isn’t progressing at the same pace across various regions.
Web

FatCam: Museum of London’s livestream of a rancid hunk of sewage proves popular

A London museum put part of a fatberg on display earlier this year and the putrid muck proved to be a surprise hit with visitors. Keen to share it with a wider audience, the fatberg is now starring in its very own livestream.
Computing

Australian student hacks into Apple, steals 90GB of data because he’s a ‘fan’

A 16-year-old student in Australia broke into Apple’s network multiple times for an entire year to download 90GB of “secure” data and access customer accounts. He did this because he was a "fan."