The service is called Amazon Key and it effectively lets couriers into your home using a smart lock, paired with Amazon’s own internet-connected security camera.
So how does it work?
Well the premise is simple. You simply choose one of the compatible smart locks available and combine it with Amazon’s Cloud Cam. Once they’re installed and you’re signed up to Amazon Key you’re good to go.
Once the delivery is placed and the courier arrives at your door they’ll scan the package and can then unlock the door.
The moment the package is scanned it also triggers the Amazon Cloud Cam so that it can record the moment of delivery.
The courier then leaves the package in a pre-agreed location within your house.
To confirm that it all went as planned, you’ll get a notification as well as a short video clip showing the courier making the delivery inside your house.
While on the one hand it’s clear that the idea of letting strangers into your house might feel weird. Yet Amazon has also clearly made a significant effort here to make the process as transparent as possible by making the purchase of its Cloud Cam compulsory.
In addition to deliveries, Amazon envisages Key being used for a whole range of other services too including cleaning, or to let guests in (perfect for Airbnb users).
What’s clear though is that no matter how useful you might envisage this Amazon Key is a huge step in terms of trust. Not only are you trusting Amazon with the safety of your home, but you’re also completely signing up to their hardware infrastructure (the required Cloud Cam).
For those that already have home services already such as cleaners this might not be such a leap of faith, however those people are firmly in the minority and so for the rest of us it’s clear that this is a big step in trust for what could be only a minor step in convenience.
For the moment Amazon Key is only being trialled in a limited number of US cities where residents will have to enter their zipcode to find out if they’re eligible. If they are they’ll then have to fork out a further $249.99.