Can you believe I have never done my grocery shopping online before? I must be the only person left in the UK that hasn’t! I’m not 100% sure why but I think it’s primarily because I’m just I’m a bit picky and like choosing my own food. I can’t trust someone to do it for me. My complete lack of ability to delegate probably explains why I’m always so tired.
Anyway, I digress. Waitrose got in touch with me to see if I would like to try out a new way of shopping online, by using their new Hiku device. The Hiku works by allowing you to either scan the barcode on the products you want or you can press a button on it and say the name of the product into the device.
I have to admit to being a bit dubious, because as great as technology can be, invariably it falls down somewhere along the line. But the instructions on how to set-up the Hiku were straightforward enough, even for a simpleton like me, and yet I still managed to get it wrong! Part of the set-up involves you laying the Hiku device on top of your phone (yes really) and pressing a button – the screen then flashes madly like an 1980’s disco. You just need to make sure the device is laid down vertically, not horizontally. Doh!
Once the device is set up you are good to go. The process is simple:
- Download the Hiku app onto your phone.
- Follow the instructions, ensuring your device is the right way up(!!) and wait for the light inside the device to turn green.
- Ensure you sign up your device to the same email address that you have used with your Waitrose.com account.
- (You won’t need to use the app on your phone again.)
- The device is charged via a USB port.
- It’s intuitive, fast and accurate.
- Either hold the button down on the device and scan the products you want to add to your list (maybe as you’re throwing empty packages away?) Or make a cup of tea, sit down and just talk into the device telling it what you want it to add.
And I think it’s that last point where the Hiku comes into its own. I don’t know anybody that particularly loves grocery shopping. Male or female, young or old, it’s just not as exciting as it is shopping for shoes. However, there are certain members of the family that might find the whole process a bit more interesting/fun if they get to use some technology along the way. So, as much as grocery shopping can be done easily online without a Hiku, it just makes it a lot more fun with one!
Also, imagine you’ve got a rare spare 10 minutes to spend in the bath or on the loo (OK, maybe 5 minutes), you could multi-task and just chat away into your device knowing that you don’t have to write any lists down ever again!
When you go into your account on Waitrose.com, you just need to find your Hiku list, and all of your items you’ve chosen are there. Add them to the basket and checkout … and that’s it!
I’m a bit of a control freak so I’m not sure whether I’m a convert to online shopping yet, but I have to say that using the Hiku during this trial was loads of fun – even Dexter joined in! Everything I chose was in stock … and everything arrived in perfect condition, so maybe I’ve just been a bit too anal about doing my own shopping all these years.
When the driver arrived, Ben answered the door and brought the shopping in for me. He then shouted upstairs to me in my bedroom, “Mum!! Why is all your shopping alcohol?”
In my defence, I’m saving up bottles Prosecco for my new house party in May, but it is always wise to road test new products right? And I can safely say, after last night, that the Waitrose Prosecco for £6.99 was delicious!
Will the Hiku catch on? Yes, I think it probably will, because we are always looking for shortcuts to save on time. I also think it’s a good way to encourage other members of the family to do the shopping for you … which can’t be a bad thing.
The hiku is only being trialled at the moment so I’m afraid I don’t have a price or a release date for you yet, but for more information on this innovative scanning gadget, check out Waitrose’s Hot Ideas site. No doubt Waitrose will update us with more information soon.