Amazon takes on the corner store with Instant Pickup

This Sept. 6, 2012, file photo, shows the Amazon logo in Santa Monica, Calif. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon, File)

(CNN)– Sometimes you need a cold soda, chips, tampons and an Amazon Echo ASAP.

Amazon (AMZN, Tech30) is taking on the convenience store with Amazon Instant Pickup, a new service it launched on Tuesday. Instant pickup lets customers order from a limited list of basic supplies and Amazon devices from the app, then pick them up from a nearby pickup locker “within two minutes.”

The company is starting with customers often associated with sudden cravings for snacks: college students.

Instant Pickup will make use of the company’s existing network of pickup locations — small spaces with rows of lockers, an inventory room and a staff of Amazon employees. Currently the lockers are used by customers to pick up regular Amazon Prime packages and drop off returns.

It works similarly for the Instant Pickup. A Prime customer uses the Amazon app to choose what they want from among hundreds of non-perishable foods, personal care items and other products that are stocked at the location. Then one of the location employees will quickly move the goods into a locker.

Impulse buys are also available, should customers decide they want something sweet and salty once they get there.

Starting this week, Instant Pickup will be available at five campus locations in Los Angeles, Atlanta, Columbus, Ohio, Berkeley, California and College Park, Maryland. Amazon plans on expanding Instant Pickup to its 22 U.S. college locations as early as next week.

Amazon regularly experiments with different food and grocery services. It’s planning to buy Whole Foods, and is testing Blue Apron-like meal kits delivery service. AmazonFresh Pickup, only available in two Seattle locations, has employees put groceries right in the trunk of your car.

WTNH NEWS8 provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Also, you can now block any inappropriate user by simple selecting the drop down menu on the right of any comment and selection "Block User" from there.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s