Delivery From Inconvenience
Grocery shopping in New York City: it’s truly the stuff of nightmares. From never-ending checkout lines that wind through the cramped aisles, to the pain of negotiating your near-bursting bags down the subway steps, sometimes we just want to call it a day and order Seamless for the rest of our lives.
But wait! An app called Instacart, originally from San Francisco, is launching today in New York City. Instacart lets you order food from your fave local grocery stores, and then select your desired delivery window, which could be as soon as the next hour — we can’t even manage to fight our way into the Union Square Trader Joe’s in that amount of time.
Hello Again Old Friend
Valley-based startup accelerator Y Combinator celebrated its 15th demo day yesterday, with 75 fledgling startups pitching their ideas to a dazzling collection of idea-hungry VC firms and pageview-hungry press outlets. Here’s what we think some of the companies do, based on their rather unpronounceable names.
Of all the ghosts of tech bubbles past, none looms as large in our memory as the ultimate flameout classic, Kozmo.com, which offered one-hour free delivery of any item on its site.
Oh, foolish Kozmo, how we loved you. Let us count the ways. One for the ability to order a pack of cigarettes, VCR, or a lobster dinner, all from the same place. Two for your strong-calved bike messengers, pumping up and down Broadway. Three for permanently gifting us with VHS tapes of “Magnolia” and “Edward Scissorhands,” forever housed in our parent’s bookshelf, after you went under. Shitty business model, glorious service.
So we’re particularly pleased to see that someone is resurrecting the concept, albeit with a little less boomtime hubris and much better planning skills.