The last 10 steps

In the week before Christmas, houses around the world are inundated with ‘Sorry we missed you’ delivery notes from couriers. So if you’re wondering why on-line retail still only represents 10% of sales in the USA and around 6.9% in Australia, it’s because the real problem isn’t the last mile, it’s the last 10 steps.

What is the last 10 steps? I’m defining it as the space between where the delivery van stops out front of the final destination, to getting the package inside. It’s estimated that more than 20% of deliveries do not get made on the first attempt. This comes at a massive cost to couriers, and ultimately us. And this is before we consider the horror of having to go into a post office pick up the package. Which is much worse than shopping –  so annoying.

While we have access to most everything via ecommerce these days, our houses need an upgrade to cope. Yep, our houses have been upgraded many times as new technologies arrived. We’ve added electricity, indoor plumbing, automated heating, and even driveways are a little over 100 years ago. Unfortunately our letter boxes haven’t had an upgrade in about 250 years – and we need one. The early attempts to solve this problem are lets just say, sub-optimal. Giving Amazon a key for couriers to unlock my door? No thanks. A  locker outside a petrol station brought to you by postal services around the world? Hmm, that seems like a company not trying very hard. Quite frankly I can’t believe a Mac Daddy Delivery Box hasn’t entered the home market yet.

So what would one of these puppies look like? Here’s the Sammatron version of the Mac Daddy Delivery Box to avoid our Christmas ecommerce woes in 2019:

The Mac Daddy Delivery Box – Some of the features I’d put into it:

  • It would have 3 sections: Dry, Fridge and Frozen – so it could take all deliveries.
  • It would probably be a as big as a fridge.
  • It would be underground and have a button for the courier to press and it rises up on demand to take the delivery.
  • When a delivery arrives the owner would get a call and see live video footage of who is delivering the item and potentially check their ID.
  • The delivery unit would only open via the owners smart phone.
  • It would have near field communication readers (RFID) and image recognition cameras to detect the delivery is correct and as ordered.
  • All data of deliveries would be owned by the person who owns the MDDB (Mac Daddy Delivery Box) so they could sell that information to companies if they choose, for their own profit.
  • The MDDB would aggregate data and give reports of who, what and when back to the owner to track their spending.
  • It would be secure like a safe, so that items of high value could be delivered safely.
  • It would be electric, and solar powered.
  • It would make your friends envious and totally want one.
  • Optional Extra: two small palm trees above the underground delivery unit – so that when a delivery arrives it looks like the Thunderbirds secret cave coming out of the ground!

This type of delivery unit seems inevitable to me. It’s not if, but who and when. And if it isn’t done by mid 2019, then I’ll do it myself in my House of the Future project. Until then, you might just choose a glitter bomb to entertain you in the interim.


🎄Have a great Christmas, Steve.