Electronics retailer MediaMarktSaturn has partnered with tech startup Smartmile to trial a fully automated carrier-agnostic parcel station in Ingolstadt, Germany.
Smartmile’s fully automated parcel station can store parcels from any courier, and enables customers to collect them at any time, seven days a week.
Martin Wild, chief innovation officer of MediaMarktSaturn, said, “Innovations are extremely important to our business. That’s why we’re always launching pilot projects with our startups from the Retailtech Hub.
“This time I’m delighted that with Smartmile, for the first time we’ve been able to implement a pilot project at the campus in Ingolstadt. This project allows us to trial new technologies while having them experienced by the people of Ingolstadt.”
Steffen Luippold, one of the managers of Smartmile, added, “The system can easily be opened up to other retailers in Ingolstadt. This means that local retailers can offer their customers an additional service.”
As well as storing parcels, the locker will also help the adjacent MediaMarkt store further expand its range of services. In future, customers will be able to place a broken smartphone in the box first thing in the morning before the store opens and collect it again in full working order after 8pm that evening.
To use the service, customers first sign up on the Smartmile website where they receive an individual ID and the delivery address of the parcel station. This address can then be entered as the delivery address the next time they order something online.
As soon as Smartmile has placed a parcel for the customer in the parcel station, they receive a PIN by text message which can be used to collect the parcel from the machine.
Parcels are stored for seven days, although this period can be extended in individual cases on request.