Business & Real Estate

Amazon’s Sacramento center is up and shipping; plans for inside home delivery in works

Amazon employees packed the first customer order at the Sacramento fulfillment center on Wednesday. The first order was an eight-set of Kona Coffee serve cups.
Amazon employees packed the first customer order at the Sacramento fulfillment center on Wednesday. The first order was an eight-set of Kona Coffee serve cups. Amazon.com

Amazon.com formally launched its new fulfillment center Wednesday in Sacramento and announced that the city will be tapped to receive support for Amazon Key, which will allow Prime customers to have packages delivered inside their homes.

The Seattle-based retail/tech giant said the first shipped package from the 855,000-square-foot distribution site at Metro Air Park near Sacramento International Airport was an eight-set of Kona Coffee serve cups.

Amazon officials said the company welcomed “hundreds” of full-time employees to the site in the past few days and is ramping up shipping customer orders.

The Sacramento site is designed to sort, pack and ship comparatively small customer items, such as books, electronics and toys.

The center is expected to employ about 1,500 people at full capacity. It also features on-site robot technology.

The Sacramento facility is Amazon’s 11th fulfillment center in California.

Sacramento is one of 37 cities planned to receive support for Amazon Key, which will allow company-verified delivery workers to temporarily unlock customers’ homes, then lock again before leaving. Users can also remotely grant access to guests such as maintenance workers or dog walkers, and will be notified each time someone enters their house.

Visitors will be recorded through the Cloud Cam, a 1080p video recorder with night vision and two-way audio that streams live to the Amazon Key app. The digital lock can be also accessed with a key code, which delivery workers are not privy to.

Customers will receive a notification through the app when their package has been delivered and the door is locked. Security cameras can be mounted on houses or apartment buildings, though Amazon recommends people with pets skip the in-home delivery option when checking out.

The entire contraption is billed at $249.99, while the security camera alone runs $119.99. Installation is free for either.

Amazon isn’t the only corporation experimenting with in-home delivery. Walmart announced last month it would let Silicon Valley customers opt to have employees shop for their groceries, drive to customers’ homes and put them away in refrigerators or cabinets, all monitored through user security cameras.

Sacramentans will be able to install Amazon Key on Nov. 8, the company announced Wednesday, as will residents of Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego and the Bay Area.

The Amazon U.S. fulfillment network consists of more than 50 fulfillment centers, over 20 sortation centers and more than 90,000 full-time employees. Have a look around.

Mark Glover: 916-321-1184, @markhglover

Related stories from Sacramento Bee

  Comments