Online shopping is expected to set records again this holiday season. With COVID cases going up again many people who rarely shop online will do most of their Black Friday holiday shopping from their computers and smartphones.
With so much online shopping and deliveries it will be open season for porch pirates.
You can catch them red-handed on camera but guess what? Your packages are still gone. Packages would be safe if they’re never left outside.
Enter, Amazon Key garage delivery.
A new program where shoppers can have their items left inside their garage when they’re not home. To do that, you’ll need the right garage door opener.
The most popular smart garage door opener is the MyQ Smart Garage. It connects to your existing garage door opener so you can control that garage door through your phone. There’s a sensor you place on your garage door to detect when it’s open and closed.
You’ll also need a security camera that works with Amazon Key. I picked up a refurbished Ring camera that was $50 on Amazon. The Amazon Key app is free.
To check it out, I ordered two Amazon Fire Sticks and chose “in garage delivery” at checkout. On the day of the delivery, I received text messages with the approximate delivery time.
Sometimes I’ve received updates from Amazon drivers when the delivery is a few stops away from my house. If that had been the case with this delivery I would have been able to see when the driver approached, I could open the door with the MyQ app and watched the driver drop off the package inside the garage and then close the door again.
That’s how it’s supposed to work.
On the first delivery, the driver didn’t notify me that he was close and ended up leaving the package on the porch because the garage door was closed. I didn’t get a notification for the 2nd delivery until the driver had arrived so he just handed me the package while I was setting up my camera.
Frustrated by now I ordered a mini-tripod from Amazon and again selected “Amazon Key Garage Delivery”. I received an update through the Amazon Key app that it was to be delivered between 11 AM and 3 PM.
I didn’t get another update until the driver pulled up in front of my house. This time though, the garage door opened, the driver dropped off the package and the door closed behind him. I was able to watch the delivery through the Ring camera app. It all felt very safe and secure.
Amazon says it verifies that the package belongs to the address and when the driver is near the door, they turn on “Cloud Cam” and opens the door, places the package inside, and requests again to close the door. It worked flawlessly, except I never got a notification that the driver was here but did get a notification that the delivery was made inside the garage.
Amazon Key is rolling out but is only available in some zip codes and only available when the delivery is being made by Amazon and not the USPS or UPS. Amazon.