Delivery From Inconvenience
Smartphones Make You Lazy
Trying new recipes — it’s a pain in the butt, right? You have to pore over a cookbook, schlep to the grocery store, and then spend a small fortune on full jars of saffron and garam masala when all you really need is a single tablespoon of each. The whole process is also really time consuming, especially if — like me — you work till 6 p.m. and then have to commute back to Queens before you can even think about preparing food.
That’s why I was compelled to test out Blue Apron, an online service that delivers fresh, perfectly portioned-out ingredients with accompanying recipes directly to your door. For $9.99 per person per meal, customers can subscribe to receive the ingredients for three meals per week, each catering to their personal tastes and — as much as possible — dietary restrictions. (To my dismay, Blue Apron hasn’t started intentionally making gluten-free meals, but I did find some that were naturally gluten-free, or that could be tweaked, slightly, to accommodate my allergy.)
Everyone’s approach to Halloween is different. Some dorks toil for weeks to create clever homemade costumes that will live in Instagram infamy. Others are just there for the booze, virtually forgetting the whole costume part until they duck into a Spirit Halloween store at the last minute.
If you’re the lazy type, we’ve got some good news. On-demand delivery service WunWun is offering free delivery of Halloween costumes, Halloween candy, pumpkin beer–really, anything Halloween you can think of.
Between Amazon Prime, Google Shopping Express and eBay Now, the next-day delivery wars are heating up, leading big box store Wal-Mart to unleash a chorus of “me too’s!” But in order to become a legitimate competitor, Wal-Mart has to devise a creative scheme to make it stand out. That scheme? Just having its customers do the deliveries and calling it “crowd sourcing.”
After the Storm
A billboard in the Union Square station is kind of like the Inception of Internet references, collecting every advertiser’s notion of what is cool/hip on the web and slapping it onto one delightful subway ad.
Techies Be Snackin
This week, just when you most wished for the familiar comfort of Seamless order delivered to your door, loss of power and Internet, lack of availability or guilt over subjecting delivery guys to the elements kept you away.
In the midst of the storm, one wit started a Tumblr chronicling the most egregious egregious wait times Read More
Deliver Us From Evil
Founded a year and a half ago in San Francisco, Cater2Me quickly found its niche feeding the ravenous techies of Silicon Valley, nabbing clients like Dropbox, Square and Klout. “You can call it the Google effect, if you want,” cofounder Alex Lorton told Betabeat, and “that idea is becoming the norm in New York, as well.”
Hence the company’s decision to expand to New York City. The service just launched yesterday, but it sounds like Mr. Lorton is already halfway to going out for the cheerleading team.
“I think it’s cool to be part of the expansion of Silicon Alley, to use the phrase, to be part of that startup community,” he said. “People in startups are, I think, more willing to embrace something that’s new, something that’s initially not as tested.”
Well, hopefully it’s not that untested.
FreshDirect, the online grocery service that offers next-day delivery on your bounty of veggies (and cookies), has become so ubiquitous in New York that some apartment buildings advertise “FreshDirect storage” as a lust-worthy amenity. For the torturously busy (or–okay–the lazy), FreshDirect is a godsend, delivering produce, toiletries–even beer!–with the click of a button.
But in recent months, FreshDirect has seen its own share of scorn over some pretty serious issues. Though slated to relocate its Long Island City warehouse facility to the South Bronx, FreshDirect only began delivering to residents there back in May. And in February, aggrieved South Bronx residents launched a petition protesting the relocation, listing a history of discriminatory and unfair labor practices, as well as the fact that the company does not accept food stamps.
Of course, that the government is providing FreshDirect with $130 million in tax breaks to relocate doesn’t make them look any better.