On the heels of Amazon announcing that there would be even more price cuts at Whole Foods, effective Wednesday (including peak-of-season produce, such as tropical fruits, greens, and more), Walmart is answering back—by partnering with Google. On Tuesday, the retail company revealed that Walmart customers can now order their groceries with voice ordering through Google Assistant, a first for the brand, reports USA Today. The partnership was teased as early as 2017, and now it’s finally become a reality.
Customers can use Google Assistant to order from a select group of Walmarts—the 2,100-plus that have in-store pickup, as well as the 800-plus with delivery. You also need to have a device with said Google Assistant in order to participate, whether that be a Google Home Hub, iPhone, Android, etc. According to a post by Tom Ward, senior vice president of digital operations at Walmart U.S., on the Walmart blog, while Google is the first voice ordering partnership the company has leveraged, it’s looking to add more “as time goes on.” Still, if you can access the feature right now, it can simplify your shopping process greatly—all you have to do is say “Hey Google, talk to Walmart,” and you can add items to your grocery cart.
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The technology also makes sure to remember a customer’s preferences—on the blog, Ward gave the example of someone ordering milk. If they tell Google to add milk to their cart, and they regularly buy a certain brand of one percent milk, that milk will go in the cart, without them having to specify. (Needless to say, if you suddenly have a craving for skim milk or almond milk, make sure you let Google know.) “The more you use it, the better we’ll get,” Ward wrote.
So what else can you get with voice ordering? Starbucks is available, through the app and Amazon’s Alexa, as well as Google Assistant; Seamless, too, has a partnership with Alexa. With grocery stores in the mix too, it’s getting easier than ever to order all your essentials without having to lift a finger.
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