Zappos Tests Digital Assistant That Tracks Down Products, Whether They Sell It or Not

Zappos AskZappos

Online retailer Zappos, famously known for it’s exceptional customer service, is testing AskZappos, a new digital assistant service. Customers can text, email, Instagram or upload a photo of any product and a small team at Zappos will track that item down at no cost, whether they sell it in their online store or not.

During it’s testing phase, the service is managed by a small team at Zappos Labs, who look up the product themselves, but eventually AskZappos will leverage image recognition to automate some of the process. According to the website AskZappos will soon include posts made from Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr.

AskZappos is part of a trend that is connecting the real and online commerce worlds through image recognition technology.

Recently Amazon brought it’s Flow technology to its main app, leveraging the smartphone’s camera to recognize real-world items and add them to their shopping list. Target has launched an app called “in a Snap“, which recognizes the retailer’s products in flyers, catalogs and magazines.

[via c|net]

United States

Zady.com Teams with Vespa for Last-Minute Christmas Gift Delivery Service

Zady Partners with Vespa for Operation Santa

UPS may have had some hiccups getting packages delivered before Christmas, but Zady.com wasn’t taking any chances with its customers in the Manhattan and Brooklyn area.

The online store teamed up with American Vespa to launch “Operation Santa”, a free delivery service using scooter-riding couriers dressed like Santa Claus.

[via Fashion Times]

USA

Australian Online Bookstore Creates Pop-Up Book Stop for Commuters

Bookworld Bus Stop Bookshelf

As part of a Christmas campaign, Australian online store Bookworld has created pop-up book stops at bus shelters around Sydney and Melbourne. Interested commuters were free to help themselves to any books that they wanted.

The campaign created by ad agency VCCP, hopes to remind Australians that Bookworld, with over 13 million books, is a local alternative to large international booksellers companies like Amazon.

[via mUmBRELLA] [photo via Twitter]

Australia