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August 20, 2014

Uber launches shopping delivery service

Taxi fleet will deliver choice of goods to your door.

By Vinod

Notorious taxi app Uber has announced its first foray outside the world of passenger driving with the launch of a new delivery service.

Launching in Washington DC as part of an initial trial, Corner Store lets Uber customers request goods commonly found in an American drugstore (pharmacy), which are then delivered by Uber drivers in the local area.

The company says this will include over a hundred everyday goods, from toothpaste to allergy medicine, with the service due to be expanded further if customers respond positively to the trial.

The company is not charging any delivery fees for the items, with prices also remaining close to high-street value as it looks to gauge initial public interest.

"The more you love it, the more likely it will last," the company said in a blog post announcing the service, which will also let customers request new items to be added to its inventory, and comes just months after Amazon announced a similar "last mile" scheme.

cornerstoreapp

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Customers can access Corner Store through the existing iOS and Android Uber app (pictured above), with a local driver calling them to run through what goods are available to deliver and take their order when a location is specified.

Corner Store will initially be available from 9am to 9pm on Monday to Friday across select areas in Washington DC, with the company saying it plans to extend these hours to include late night and weekend deliveries.

Following a series of extremely public protests against the company earlier this year, Uber has embarked on somewhat of a charm offensive as it looks to win customers with lower prices and additional services.

The company also hired President Obama’s former campaign manager David Plouffe as its SVP of policy and strategy on Tuesday, marking a serious statement of intent as it looks to take on the likes of Hailo and Lyft.

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