TOKYO -- Japanese homebuilders are installing delivery receptacles to accept packages in order to cut down the redeliveries currently plaguing the domestic logistics industry.
Daiwa House Industry is making such delivery boxes a standard accessory in houses. The company will install them at 600 single-family detached homes by March 2018. Delivery personnel can drop off packages at these units if no one is home to receive them. The resident can later retrieve the parcel by entering a code. Daiwa House will advertise the convenience the boxes can provide for dual-worker households.
In the Saitama Prefecture city of Koshigaya, the company put on the market 145 homes that come equipped with delivery boxes developed jointly with Japan Post and Nasta, a Tokyo maker of letterboxes. The feature can also be found at 78 condominiums in Nishitokyo, a city in western Tokyo. Other homes around the country will soon see the boxes.
It costs slightly less than 300,000 yen ($2,709) to set up each box, which is reportedly on par with a mailbox that has an added intercom.
Mitsubishi Jisho Residence and Mitsui Fudosan Residential will modify postal receptacles to have bigger apertures that will accept the smallest boxes used by e-commerce giant Amazon Japan.
Mitsui Fudosan Residential has also joined with Tokyo-based delivery box company Fulltime System to increase the number of boxes at its condo complexes. The proportion of those households possessing delivery boxes will rise from roughly 16% to over 20%. Individual boxes contained in larger units will shrink to accommodate more of them.
Furthermore, Mitsui Fudosan Residential is rolling out a notification system for delivered packages. When a resident comes home for the day, a light by the door intercom will blink, indicating that a parcel has been dropped off. If the package has yet to be picked up by the next day, the system will send an email or other communication to the recipient. Currently, notifications are sent on the fourth day after the undeclared package arrives.
Awareness of delivery boxes is quickly spreading among Japanese consumers. Panasonic is delaying the release of a new model that had a Monday street date due to an overwhelming surge in demand. Orders for existing models are nearly quintuple the average monthly unit output. The new receptacle will once again be available for orders starting June 1.