Online grocery retailer Ocado has added an Amazon Alexa app to its multi-device, the first UK supermarket to do so. The app went live on Tuesday 29th August, bringing voice control to its existing apps for Apple iOS, watchOS, Android and online webshop Ocado.com. The new skill uses artificial intelligence to make behaviourally-relevant product suggestions.
Lawrence Hene, marketing and commercial director at Ocado, said: “Grocery shopping should be quick, easy and convenient. Using voice technology, we’ve made it even easier by developing our new app that will enable our customers to add to their Ocado baskets without lifting a finger.”
He added: “Consumer demand for increasingly convenient ways to shop is growing rapidly and we’re excited to be the first supermarket in the UK to offer this technology, making customers’ lives ever easier. Alexa will add any item to your Ocado basket simply by asking her to do so. It’s as easy as that.”
AI was deployed to understand customer product preferences, leading to the creation of the Ocado Conversational Service. This suggests both previously-bought items as well as other appropriate products, with customers able to add to an existing order or basket, check seasonal specials and recipes, check orders in progress and track deliveries all using their voice.
(Marcin Druzkowski, senior data scientist at Ocado Technology, is speaking at this year’s DataIQ Future conference on 19th October. Click here for more details.)