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Google acquires BufferBox (YC S12) (financialpost.com)
295 points by mmccauley on Nov 30, 2012 | hide | past | web | favorite | 156 comments



This is a german Packstation: http://images.computerwoche.de/images/computerwoche/bdb/1841...

Welcome to the future, America. I'd be happy to see what a startup under Google can do, but the competition isn't exactly asleep.


How does the security of BufferBox/Amazon Locker compare to Packstation?

To get your packet out of a Packstation, you need both the (magnetic strip) card that they send you on signup and a one-time PIN they send via SMS (not email). This might not sound "easy", but there has been a lot of abuse in the past years so that DHL was forced to step up security.

How do the US systems compare? Have there been reports on abuse?


For Bufferbox, when the package is delivered to the box, they send you an email with an access code, and you have to enter the access code. As far as build quality and strength, they seem pretty solid, and I haven't heard of any abuse stories from the Bufferbox guys.


For Packstation they had some serious problems with phishing. At first you only needed your Packstation User Number and the PIN. They then disallowed logins with user number and required the membership card. But it seems they started skimming those, so starting from last month they send you a TAN to your cellphone when the package arrives and you need card+TAN.

From what I see Bufferbox right now only has a few locations, for Packstation its over 2500 locations and a wide userbase, as with software: the wider the user-base the bigger the profit for bad guys.


Amazon and Bufferbox did the sensible thing from the start: one time use access codes.


Via email. Not very hard to hack.


If you email is hacked you likely have bigger problems than a package or two going missing.


Email transport is done in plaintext on the public internet -- it provides no confidentiality or integrity.


Most e-mail users are using browser-based e-mail clients over HTTPS so in order to access the plaintext email one needs to tap the senders local network which would only work if the sender is not using an HTTPS webmail. Plaintext public internet attacks for email were more common when people used unsecured POP3 and IMAP.


How long is the code? What happens if I approach a bufferbox in the middle of the night and try to brute force a TAN?


Wouldn't be much of a problem with exponential backoff time and even a 6-digit pin.


I wouldn't call it solid: All that the 'bad guy' needs to go shopping with a stolen CC is control over an email box of a BufferBox customer. DHL had to learn it the hard way, and I'm sure they didn't come up with two factor authentication (card+pin knowledge) and out-of-band (SMS) PIN transmission without a reason. We'll see how it works out in the US..


I'm surprised no one has tried NFC for security.


With Germany being notorious for its copycats, it's funny to see this in reverse.

Who would have thought that an idea that exists in Germany for almost 10 years would still be great for a startup in the US/Canada.


Funny that you would say that. There are a lot of us start ups (even yc ones!) that copy companyies/ideas that are proven and established here in Germany. The package stuff s just one example. All the ride sharing start ups that were hyped some time ago basically copy "mitfahrgelegenheit.de" ( now the company s known as carpooling) wh have been dong this for nearly ten years now. Public bike sharing is another example.

It's easy to just blame rocket Internet and pretend like that's all of German innovation/startp scene. Packaging and bike sharing weren't even pioneered by startups but by huge formerly state owned companies who are Slow and boring n the Public eye


I agree that Germany is not all about copycats. Thanks to the Samwers and others this perception was created. If you visit places like Silicon Valley and say you're from Germany you can be sure to find someone who will "make a joke" about Germany and startup copycats.

What irritates me is that nobody seems to point out these reverse cases, where others copy German innovation/ideas.

Also I'm wondering why these positive German examples didn't really scale internationally? Why didn't DHL roll out Packstation in the US? (Big company policies and lack of innovation?) Why has Mitfahrgelegenheit/Carpooling needed almost 8 years to launch in Europe? Why hasn't it launched in the US?

Just really wondering about the different perception and mindsets of US and German startups...


Germans are pretty conservative. There was a successful German startup that I looked at, that bragged about how cash flow positive they were. I said FFS, why? In the US in a high growth startup land grab type business, you would put all the cash back into the business to grow it as fast as possible, including internationally, instead of hoarding it and bragging about how solid and conservative you are.


Different values? Maybe they're happy with what they've got and don't need to risk it all for a very small improvement in their already fantastic lifestyle? I'm not criticizing founders who decide to go for it all, but I definitely wouldn't look down on a small but successful business like their clueless.

I personally find the profitable and sustainable business model way more attractive than the grow for the sake of growth model.


Sometimes the only defensible market position is #1. it's a natural winner-take-all market with strong network effects.

You could end up #1 in Germany against a #2 who is #1 in the rest of the EU - when by moving faster you could have been #1 in the entire EU.


Sure, this makes sense some times. Other times it may turn a profitable business into a spectacular and over-hyped failure.


In my limited experience, DHL in the US (formerly Airborne Express) doesn't know its ass from its elbow, and is a shambling testament to union sloth and inefficiency. Perhaps things are different in DE?


The Germans are the leading industrial nation of the world, so it's not surprising that for a startup in this field US is the copy-cat.

P.S. I'm defining industrial as 'the manipulation and enrichment of physical goods' for the purpose of this comment.


Really? You might enjoy reading this article: http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-02-29/the-germany-...


That's why I explicitly mentioned "manipulation and enrichment of physical goods"


Notorious for its copycats? Can you explain this? I don't know what you are referring to.



I don't get it, this is just one example.


But a huge one.


The big difference between Rocket & BufferBox/Amazon is the implementation of the idea. Rocket doesn't just take an awesome idea and bring it home, they CLONE the initial product, usually copying layout and look & feel. It's this cloning action that draws the ire of the tech world, not the fact that they take international ideas and implement them locally.


DHL "Packstation" started 10 years ago here in Germany, now those boxes are everywhere in populated areas. I was somewhat surprised that it isn't popular in the US.


Yes, well, P.O. boxes have been around since time immemorial too. In this case, the hard part isn't the idea of "a place where people can have stuff shipped that isn't their home address". It's handling the logistics, interfacing with online retailers, etc. It would be a lot more interesting if you could show BufferBox copying some specific, non-obvious technique.


A German packstation is not a PO box. It is exactly like a buffer box.


Yes, I understand that well. That doesn't conflict with anything I said unless you think that the crucial insight of the German packstation was to share boxes.


in japan, it is even more prevalent to some extend than in germany. e.g., amazon will ship to any convenience store for you to pick your parcel up. raktuen etc. as well! and there are way, way more convenience stores in japan than anything else (apart from vendin machines :))!


...and it seems an amazingly efficient service: no real infrastructure required (packages are on a shelf behind the counter), last-mile shipping done on the same trucks that restock the stores, uses the existing store computer systems, etc.

The "locker model" might be better for high-value goods and an untrustworthy workforce, but it seems to require a pretty huge investment to get any significant coverage...


Yes, DHL already did this. But, its market is huge and it will grow. Even, I would say still there is space for new arrivals in this field.


I see Amazon Lockers at parking garages near me while walking around in New York.


The same was launched and failed in the same place (Toronto) in the year 2000, with locations at Go and Subway stations. I think Google will want to change the business model radically in some way.


Do you mean Empori? I think those guys failed because their business model was also in online retailing itself ... http://www.dodgycoder.net/2012/08/empori-original-amazon-loc...


They actually aren't even in the US yet. They're only located in Southern Ontario.


And select private locations in Mountain View (ex: YC, Google).


Self-driving cars + robot arm + bufferbox = extremely cheap, fully automated delivery service. Add a robotic distribution center http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fdd6sQ8Cbe0 and you have an automated Amazon competitor. If, on top of that, Google turns your Google account into a bank account, you'll be able to buy literally with one click. Google's dominance in mobile with Android will ensure that everyone has a Google bank account through which you can make most of your purchases. If you're a manufacturer, Google will take care of all your advertising for free, just so long as you give them a tiny cut of each sale. Google will be a trillion dollars company.


As tongue in check as this post seems to me I actually think this is one possible way that things could go. I see massive disruption in the next 10 years in regards to the amounts of jobs that could easily become irrelevant once this sort of tech matures. It will be a very interesting space to watch. A Google + Uber partnership could be very kewl as well. We could get our goods, our transportation, internet and knowledge all from the an advertising company. Frightening and exciting at the same time. I think we live in very interesting times.


But at that point, would Google continue to be an advertising company? It would be like one of those megacorps that you see in movies, but hopefully not evil.


> .. Google .. but hopefully not evil.

Too late, the hive mind which is $GOOG has already shown that it will do as it pleases; "hopefully" good [when convenient], otherwise whatever is profitable even if it is evil.

Can't say I blame the $GOOG; this is an inherent problem with huge organizations -- the meta consciousness which emerges vastly undermines any altruistic desires of individuals.

See also: $MS, $AAPL, $USGOV, et al.


I'd like even more to see Self-driving van with bufferbox in the back. A mobile self-driving bufferbox if you want, that comes where you are. You schedule the delivery via a web/mobile interface, car arrives, you go, put in the one-time security code and get your package just like a normal bufferbox but at your home!


I think you missed the point, which is to deliver the package when you're not around.


This actually seems like something that happen in the near future. I guess the biggest hurdle to get over first would be laws and regulations for self-driving cars, I'm sure if that were out of the way, within a year or two this would be possible.


I am not sure why you need a google bank account to do one click buying with them. You can literally buy almost anything with google checkout and wallet (conditionally the merchant supports them)


Right. What I should have emphasized is that the banking system will be provided entirely by Google. The credit card companies will be out of the equation.


I don't know about you but I want to see a buffer box setup where one of the lockers just says "I'm feeling Lucky" :-)

Edit: and given a game of chance, and games in general. I wonder if anyone at Google has considered combining BufferBox with Ingress such that as you're playing the game if you 'win' a power up it is in the form of Google schwag in a locker, where the open code and which locker appears on your augmented reality glasses to claim your 'prize'.


It is currently so small scale I also came to the conclusion this was just to make Ingress a better real life game.


Kind of the thinking behind http://adventlocker.com/


That's actually a fairly awesome idea.


Heh, can you edit someone's google resume after they've left? :-)


Imagine the trouble we could cause if we could. It would be glorious.


One of the best possible outcomes: very cool new business idea, continues operating, backed by Google, with founders compensated for the risk they took launching it. Awesome news. Congratulations!


It's not a new idea. We've had them running in my country (Denmark) for the last five years at least. They are everywhere.


This always comes up. But everyone knows its execution that matters


Branded as BufferBox, or from a different company?


Oh! Sorry, I stand corrected. BOOO, BUFFERBOX. BURN IN HELL!!


I do not think your response is appropriate. He just pointed out what seems to be a fact that the idea is not new.

Maybe you expected him/her to be excited about the exit but that not being the case does not mean you should have repled with 'rude sarcasm'.

You could have used the opportunity you used to respond to learn about competitors in the space however you chose this route.

I have noticed several senior (by karma) HN members that take an unecessary offensive approach towards comments that do not "tow the line".


I am definitely part of a plot to homogenize HN.


I think he was joking.


I don't know how I should have framed my reply. Just wanted to point out that in some places these boxes are already quite common.


You know we all love you, but this is out of line. Any one else than you would be hell-banned for this.

We know you have FU money now but please remember that that expression is supposed to be figurative and not literal.


As silly as tptacek's response was, the bigger take-away from your comment is that pg needs to take it easy with the trigger finger. The moderation here is ridiculous.


Awww. That's nice of you to say. I was kidding, though. I don't want Bufferbox to burn in hell, or anyone else for that matter.


There's an old line about Dostoevsky's religious views that, for him, hell existed – but it was empty.


I felt that it was a silly and a sarcastic reply and I sure hope its not hell-ban worthy of tptacek or anyone for that matter. Especially on Friday. Everyone just needs to take it a bit easier (c)


Genuine curiosity : why this reply to niels?


I'm just feeling goofy. I didn't mean anything by it.


I like the goofiness! I feel a little embarrassed for the people who will not or cannot recognize it as such.

The downvotes, well, those are, strictly speaking, justified. :)


I laughed.


So did I. I took it as the form of humour where someone pretends to take personal offence and has a ludicrous reaction.

I didn't think he felt seriously offensed by the comment pointing out that the idea wasn't new.


I'm guessing this is related to what I just read in the new Economist: http://www.economist.com/news/21567361-google-apple-facebook...

>Google is experimenting with a service that would let folk find goods online, order them and have them delivered within a day for a modest fee. This seems similar to Amazon’s hugely successful “Prime” service, which costs $79 a year to join in America. Rather than try to replicate the e-commerce giant’s extensive network of warehouses, Google is looking for partnerships with shipping companies and retailers instead.

I'm excited to see what Google can do. Amazon dominates e-commerce so well I'll often buy from them even if there are cheaper options elsewhere (because it's easier). Competition, as usual, will be good in this space.


Amazon delivers to 7-11.

And FedEx Store (what used to be Kinko's) is pitching their network to retailers as well, I picked up a bunch of Walmart.com there.

Not sure it's going to be that big of a game changer.


Also in this space (although not one day delivery) is ShopRunner, with a pretty impressive list of participating retailers:

http://www.shoprunner.com/trial/free-shipping-best-stores.ph...


Slightly offtopic tangent:

So by now we're all aware that these are already ubiquitous in Europe.

The question I have is why it took so long to reach the US? Why didn't the main shipping companies there like FedEx and UPS step up and use their existing infrastructure to build something like this, much more easily than a startup could do.


Amazon has been doing this for a few years in the US.

Bufferbox is actually only in Canada.

It's not a service I need, and definitely not one I'd pay extra for. I live in an apartment. The apartment office signs for and stores my packages.

If I lived in a house, in an area where people would steal the package left on my doorstep, then I might use something like this. It would have to be really convenient though.


Most apartments do not have someone to sign for packages and missed deliveries are a pain. It's definitely worth paying $3 to avoid them m


Or just get things delivered by a sane service that stores your packages at a neighbourhood postal office rather than a warehouse in a distant suburb :)


That limits you to the United States Postal Service, since USPS does not accept packages from other carriers.


Is USPS not a sane service? Sorry to hear.


The problem that's being solved is that we have no control over which delivery service a retailer uses


Sure, that's one of the ways to solve the problem.

Most retailers are upfront regarding the delivery service used. You wouldn't shop at a brick and mortar retailer that's unreasonably far from you. Why shop at an online retailer that sends your packages unreasonably far?


If we assume it's intentional I would guess the problem is the majority of US places are either too population dense or not dense enough. There's a finite amount of parcels that can be stored by these sort of systems; if the city is too dense (and too many people opt to use the system) it will become a gamble on if there's a place for your parcel there and the value of this system is you don't need to organise your day around deliveries.

I suspect the reason BufferBox can work is because they're not a delivery company, so they have no obligation to try and fit it in to their current business model. Although then a pre-existing delivery company could have always gone with the BufferBox model... so, maybe it's just not that profitable in big places like the US?


These services are in part an answer to relatively high labour cost for low/semi-skilled work, in particular outside normal working hours.

That is, in European countries with strong labour laws and unions, it's relatively expensive to pay people to deliver packages when most people are at home (early evening hours). The obvious answer is something like the Packstation, replacing labour cost with machines.

The US has a much wider market for very low income jobs because the marginal cost are lower, thus US companies can make money with jobs like people guarding parking lots, something you hardly see in Northern Europe (the weather might play a role, though...).

So naturally, such solutions spring up earlier where the relative win is higher. Plus as others mentioned the denser/more urban life style.

That's not a clear win by the way, lots of relatively decent jobs for low skilled workers are lost to these machines. The machines are cheap, but it might still have been more efficient to pay slightly less to the delivery workers (and kept them in jobs).


Very good points. Thanks for the insights!


It works well in high-density cities, and where a large proportion of the workforce pass through major train stations every day.

In cities where people live mostly in suburbs, it is not quite so affordable to supply enough of these pack stations.


Cost of land rental/lease.


Another enthusiastic "Oh wow, Google bought us! We're going to be doing so many new things now!" followed by "Sorry we're shutting down" in a few weeks. Happens every time. Isn't that what Google does? They buy a company. Half of the team leaves because they can't go through Google interview and the other half is disbanded to work on other Google projects.


This is not a tech company.

And so chances of shutting down are fairly slim unless it was the team Google was after.


Incredibly happy for Mike, Jay, Aditya and the rest of the BufferBox Team! It seems like it is getting better and better for Canadian, and in particular Kitchener-Waterloo areas. One of the other cool things is that I've had my desk at the Velocity Garage right next to theirs for the past month, and I only heard of the news this morning.


The UK equivalent is CollectPlus http://www.collectplus.co.uk/faqs#local_shop_section . Instead of picking up goods from a locker in a public area, you pick up your parcel from a convenience store. The convenience store use their Paypoint terminal to identify you and your item and get the item from their stockroom back of house. The advantage for the convenience store over lockers is they don't waste front of house space on items which can be held back of house. Paypoint provides a terminal network across 24000 UK stores to take cash for utility bills, BBC TV licences, cellphone topups and so on. Collect+ is offered by 5000 of these stores, it piggybacks on the existing network which is obviously way more efficient than building a brand new network with extra hardware. I suspect this convenience store network approach rather than lockers would apply even better to countries which do e-commerce as "cash on delivery", for example Russia.


There is also Amazon Locker in some places in the UK which is Amazon's equivalent. http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/help/customer/display.html/ref=hp...


My local corner-shop just replaced a two-meter stretch of birthday/christmas/congratulations cards with some of these Amazon lockers.

First time I'd seen them, and apparently they get a lot of usage.


>Eventually the company plans to charge $3 or $4 per package.

Wow, not sure that was ever going to be feasible. Won't be an issue now that Google bought them. Good for them!


FWIW, they were charging $3/package for their initial launch at UWaterloo, and people were actually paying for it. You're right - probably not enough people for it to be feasible, but yeah, even some of us ('poor' students) were paying for it.


I would pay that in a heartbeat. Living in an apartment is a nightmare for receiving packages. I hate getting the missed package slip and then having to call and arrange for me to pick up the package at their facility 20 minutes away. I've had to wait 2 hours at the sorting facility for them to find my package before.

So to me, $3 seems like a steal when faced with all that.


When I was working in SF, people take off half a day to receive a package. Let's say an engineer's hourly value is $100, even a $10 fee is nothing.


Our apartment is awful for receiving packages... UPS and FedEx can't even get in the front gate. But I just get packages sent to work, so there's not a problem at all.


Yes, especially since products like Amazon Locker are free


It makes sense for Amazon since they make money on all the packages. I would guess that purchases made through Google would likely be free at BufferBox.


In Taiwan, every convenience store acts like a post office where you can pick up packages, even if they are on the same street. Because there are so many 7-11's, Family Mart's, etc., the system works extremely well.

In Canada now, I think the only instance that is as wide-spread is gas stations. I could see Buffer Box stations at selected pumps in the near future.


Here's my guess - Google will offer a service where you can have some or all of your mail forwarded to a BufferBox. That mail will be scanned by Google - applying the technology they honed from scanning books, and possibly also the technology they purchased with re-captcha. So now you've got mail in digital form, which they'll make available to you online for review - with the option to have things you want handled in-person to either your actual mailbox, or to your buffer-box.

The problem is - people have no experiencing with Google related to mail - so they may be reluctant to trust them to be part of this equation. So they start with packages - offering a service to help out with package delivery, and acclimating people to Google being part of the mail-delivery equation. When people are ready, they offer the scanning service.


Besides the legal and regulatory hurdles Google would have to overcome to make this work, I don't think Google wants to be in the business of making an industry more efficient when that industry doesn't need to exist in the future at all. That is to say, why scan mail when you can just convince people to use email?

Packages, on the other hand, will still need to be delivered for the foreseeable future.


Mail will certainly decrease, but I don't think its ever going away. And there's already companies that provide a similar service. Anyway, maybe I'm wrong - but it'll be interesting to see what they do with their acquisition.


Congratulations, BufferBox! Can't wait to see what you guys are able to do with Google's resources behind you.


I'd love some data on what the demand is for this. Don't most people have a fixed address that can receive packages? Can anyone share a typical need that a large demographic has? I'm sure I'm missing something, so enlighten me....


NYC, 8 million people. Many of them don't have doormen and no where to have their packages delivered. I pay for a mailbox which is somewhat close to my house and I'm lucky that they receive/hold packages for me (during a limited time). THis service is useful for those in large urban environments.

Furthermore, anyone who doesn't want their packages stolen, damaged etc because they aren't home to receive delivery is also a large market.

Yes, UPS does have an area where you can go pick up your package if it isn't delivered, but that is super annoying. I've had to do this many times and not only does their customer service suck, lines are fairly long, and the hours are very limited. It completely negated the point of ordering something online to avoid bad service, lines and store hours.


You dont have to be at home when stuff arrives.


Congrats for sure. Now let's speculate on what Google will do with them? Are they going to get into online retail and compete with Amazon? Will Google be able collect data on what is stored in the compartments? Any other ideas?


even the backward Poland had such boxes for at least several years now: http://inpost.pl. I'm really surprised Google picked them.


How does this acquisition strategically fit in for Google?


Shopping mostly, using their recent interests in Phones, Hardware, and being anti-Amazon. I think it's a broad new option for them. Plus, better to build out the general solution to this shipping problem than the specific Amazon-only solution; potential to be more useful in the long run. Better to buy this company than let it be bought by someone else.


Who is liable for the security of the package at these stations? In a normal exchange, it is the merchant up until delivery to a residence/office (or signature). In this case, is the station operator liable for stolen/lost goods? For the German one it looks like it's operated by the delivery company (DHL), but in the case of third party operators, e.g. Buffer Box, I'm assuming Buffer Box is liable?


I shipped something with Bufferbox a few days ago and am waiting for my pickup notification. Hope Google doesn't steal my package... :-)


Google is getting more "physical." Congrats guys.


This reminded me of Jessica Livingston's presentation. One of the monster were the big companies who would 'aquihire' you early on.


This doesn't sound like an aquihire where the product usually dies and the team disperses. Sounds like a regular acquisition - ie Google wants the team to continue working on their product but have it integrated with the rest of Google.

Congrats on the team, to me it sounds like Google wants BB to become a major point of contact between Google and it's customers.


If you're a company like BufferBox, the best possible thing to happen to you would be to get acquired by another company, and Google is probably second or third best behind a company already in the logistics industry.

Logistics is hard, and I don't say that about a lot of things.


The one thing I take from this is Google is very comfortable with software, and electronic hardware, but less so elsewhere.

Buying in bufferbox will just be early stages of a "buffer region" of satellite companies all bridging the virtual pure world of the google core and daily life.

Anything that currently has a key, is inefficiently owned and not shared, is fair game


Yay Waterloo! (swings his pink tie around)!

this definitely suggests an attempt to threaten Amazon on their home turf.


Where were these services during the Cold War era? I could imagine endless movie scripts of sending secret packages of stolen material prototypes etc. via these services. I guess drug lords and assassins might still be able to use them :)


In a lot of cold war spy novels they have stuff delivered to hotels all the time. I always wondered if that would work for non-spy parcels as well.


But the implication is that you might be under further surveillance in your hotel room. However you can slip out at night and get your package. Instead of going to a "trusted house" or some old bookseller you go to one of these services.


I was thinking the same thing while reading the post. Maybe a scene in the next 007 franchise film could boost their revenue ;)


That is why starting a business is so difficult. You have to solve the problems. Remember Airbnb!


Aren't they essentially just PO boxes for packages? In which case they probably did exist in that era.


Here's the Finnish equivalent:

http://www.posti.fi/smartpost/english/receiving/

We've had these for about a year or two. The company behind this is the privatised Finnish postal service.


Terrific news! Congratulations to the team. When I heard you present at YC alumni day, the concept and quality of execution was clearly among the best. Not surprised by this at all!


Not a new idea as pointed out, but very cool nonetheless. Google is stepping up its rivalry with Amazon a few notches here, it'll be interesting to see what comes of Bufferbox now.


Kudos to aditya, jay, mike and all who helped out at UWaterloo. Fun fact: They went through Velocity here first - never underestimate the power of tractions guys. Congrats!


Thought it was a great idea along with Amazon Lockers. Just did not know they would be acquired that quick! Any hints as to the financial terms of the acquisition?


Congratulations to the whole bufferbox team. Waterloo ftw.


It's great to hear the company moves forward intact at google. That kind of google acquisition seems fairly unique. Well done BufferBox!!


Wow, congratulations. I'd love to get one of these (although bigger than the one in front of YC) once I have an office.


Congrats! We have a few of them here in the Communitech Hub in Kitchener/Waterloo. Our CEO swears by them :)


Who at Google is doing due diligence? I just searched for "Atlanta" in the locations page and got a 500.


Wow....never saw this one coming.

This could be awesome. Congrats guys. Look forward to seeing what the future holds.


So many Europeans surprised they do something better than America.


Yet another acqui-hire.


I think it was probably a little bit of both. Smart guys but the announcement says that they'll continue to keep working on BufferBox. So I believe it's Google's attempt to compete with Amazon Lockers as well.


This article didn't even tell me what BufferBox is.


well you can always google :-)


Yes, and I did. But typically a well-written article will actually explain what they're talking about without assuming the reader knows all the background details.


Congrats! BufferBox has an awesome intro video.


congrats to bufferbox, and kudos on an excellent slogan: "let us handle your package" <immature snicker>


Well... that was quick. Great job!


I take this back. Quick relative to YC class but they've been working hard at this for 2.5 years. Great job guys. Super well done.


Congrats to the BufferBox team!


a) Huge risk that USPS grabs this idea and run with it b) Perfect MO for terrorists


Congrats Mike, Jay, Aditya!


Typical Google, investing in ways to provide customer service that has no human contact ever.


Is it real acquisition this time by Google? Because there wasn't any press release link and very recently there was a rumour of a company being acquired by Google.




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