Innovation That Matters

Real packages for virtual friends, no address required

Work & Lifestyle

Internet users can already send each other real-world gifts and letters without leaving the comfort of their online home. While such applications typically require a physical mailing address for the item’s destination, however, users of UK-based SendSocial can send packages with nothing more than the recipient’s email address or Twitter ID. To begin, users simply tell SendSocial the Twitter ID or email address of the friend they’d like to surprise with a package. SendSocial then sends a request to the intended recipient to get their approval. Only if that person agrees to accept the delivery does SendSocial get their address details; it does not, however, share that information with the person on the sending end. The sender, meanwhile, is notified that the mailing can proceed, and pays by debit or credit card. He or she can then print a barcoded—but address-free—mailing label to affix to the package, which gets collected and delivered within 5 working days by myHermes, SendSocial’s delivery partner. Pricing ranges from GBP 3.99 to GBP 7.99, depending on package size. Following its Twitter-based conception, SendSocial is now in beta. It’s currently available only within the UK; however, the company is working on expanding into other areas. Time to help foster some new OFF=ON connections in *your* neck of the social woods…? (Related: Buy a real beer for a Facebook friendReal candy for virtual friends.)



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