Google and Walmart join forces to do battle with Amazon

The Walmart-Google connection will start in late September. Google touts the addition of "hundreds of thousands of products at Walmart's Every Day Low Prices".

Customers will be able to use Google Home, the company's voice-operated speaker/digital assistant, in order to re-order items from Walmart - Google cites a rise in voice-based smartphone searches that is paving the way to voice-based shopping.

Lore said Walmart customers will be able to easily re-purchase products through the Easy Reorder feature on Google Express.

"That's why we made a decision to deeply integrate our Easy Reorder feature into Google Express", wrote Marc Lore, president and chief executive of Walmart US e-commerce, in a blog post.

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Google also announced that it's getting rid of its $95 annual membership fee ($10 monthly) for Express.

The collaboration is Wal-Mart's latest attempt to match the convenience of Amazon, which quickly delivers a bigger online selection and has a dominant line of voice-activated Echo speakers that play music, turn on air conditioners and handle shopping orders.

Walmart seems to be running other delivery trials, so Google Express' potential same-day delivery offering just adds a bit to the confusion on how Walmart plans to expand its delivery services.

But Amazon's Alexa-powered Echo dominates in voice-activated speakers and is set to control 70 percent of the market by the end of this year, according to eMarketer. "That's why we made a decision to deeply integrate our Easy Reorder feature into Google Express". But Amazon's competitors don't want to be left out, which is why they partnered up to compete in this nascent business. And they have also removed the membership requirement that they've had since its launch a few years back.

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Google and Walmart have teamed up in a deal that will enable consumers to shop online using voice recognition software.

The partnership allows Walmart to offer customers a service they can get from Amazon and is yet another way it is adapting to how consumers shop now, following on efforts like online grocery order pickup and a discount for in-store pick up of digital orders.

Walmart customers will be able to link their Walmart account with Google.

Lore added that the personalisation of the partnership meant people can shout out generic items such as milk, bread and cheese, and Google Assistant will know exactly the brands and the size that the user wants. And it now provides free shipping on all orders over a per-store minimum amount (usually $25 to $35).

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