The rise of email and digital communication has been good to me. It’s allowed me to effectively disregard nearly every envelope that comes to my house. Sure, I’ll get the occasional birthday card, but otherwise, I can’t think of many things that I even care to open, as there is a digital counterpart in my inbox for everything important. Well, soon I might just have a digital copy of everything that comes through the USPS, whether it’s important or not.
The USPS has been testing out a notification system that they call Informed Delivery, in part of Northern Virginia since 2014. For those that sign up, you will have a photo of every piece of incoming mail delivered via email. You’ll be able to receive up to 10 images per day, with more available on the USPS website, should you need them. The service only includes images of letter-sized mail, though they plan to add magazine photos sometime in the future.
Informed Delivery has apparently been enough of a success that they have decided to start rolling it out in New York City, and some parts of Connecticut. The service is free for anyone in the service areas, though it is limited to individuals and families. Businesses cannot use the service, though they may be able to in the future.
I’m someone that loves technology, and is happy to have everything delivered in a digital format. However, I can’t imagine a great need for this type of service, as it does little to benefit most customers. Personally, I’d like to see improved tracking of packages. The USPS tracking tool is abysmal, with updates generally only coming well after a package has been delivered, and rarely on the same day that it was promised.