unexpectedly amazing customer service

how a wishful tweet was met with an amazing response by Grofers

late evening yesterday (March 18, 2015), I read about how Postmates had partnered with Starbucks to deliver coffee to anyone with a smartphone.

Postmates is available in the US, and doesn’t cover India.

I tweeted wishfully at Grofers & their founder Albinder Dhindsa

and a few of my friends agreed.

clearly there is demand!

what happened then was amazing!!


In less than 24-hours, they launched it !

tracking order status!

editing this post while enjoying the latte !

A huge thanks to the team @ Grofers

You’ve won me as a loyal customer for life!

mobile on-demand everything, is a pipe-dream no-more

mobile on-demand everything, is a pipe-dream no-more
it is present here and now.

today (Feb 25, 2015), i did the following between 7.30PM and 8.30PM IST

  1. hailed an Uber to get from office to home
  2. ordered groceries from Le Marche via Grofers App
  3. ordered a Chinese dinner from Asian Haus via Foodpanda App
  4. paid for everything with a stored credit-card (no cash)

pretty amazing!

great time to be a consumer, everything will come to you on-demand, anytime, anywhere.

in flight shopping is a relic

Earlier this week, on a Go-Air flight from Delhi to Mumbai, it struck me how much of a relic the notion of onboard shopping has become.

Come to think of it, the average domestic or continental international flight is probably 2.5 to 3 hours in length. What kind of urgency could strike an individual to want to make a purchase for something that will eventually still have to be delivered via mail.

I’d rather get off the flight, and use a smartphone app from Amazon or Flipkart of Myntra to seek, find and order whatever it is I’d want. 

The sheer convenience of one of these services knowing my payment preferences, remembering my shipping address, and giving me rewards points in one place is far greater than choosing to buy onboard a plane.

It is time for the airlines, and mail order catalog companies to evolve, me thinks.

sharing my digital book library

One of my favorite things to do in college was to take a long bus ride to Christiansburg, VA on the weekends to visit the Barnes & Nobles bookstore and spend a few hours there. I generally managed to drag a couple friends along, and we would spend the time on the bus (30 minutes each way) to talk about the books we were excited to read, recommend books to each other, and what it is that we were hoping to run into on this trip to the bookstore. It was a magical time !

Much has changed in the world for that experience to come back around though. The primary force for change has been the Internet, and how it has transformed the process of access, acquisition, and conversation around books & reading as a social activity. E-books have brought many good features to reading, but they have also led to the demise of physical bookstores. I, in particular sad about this, as I had blogged almost a year ago.

As with all paradigm shifts, some affordances of the prior paradigm need to brought along for their core value. The new world of books, reading, and contemplative thought needs to afford the following: showcasing a book collection (personal libraries are social places), sharing highlights and quotes from books with friends, and having conversations around books and articles

I am ecstatic to share that there is a new service called Findings, that enables many of these features in a flawless fashion. You can share clips from articles you read on the web, highlights from books you read on your Kindle, and even display your entire library in one nice-looking collection !

Here is a set of links I’d like to share with you:

Library — collection of digital books (physical books coming soon)
Highlights — from the books in my library (directly from my Kindle) 
Wishlist — of books I am looking to buy & read soon (from Amazon.com)

Now, the last thing I am looking for really is a cool way to project/showcase my digital library in my office + home !

How do you share what you read, and how do you stumble into new content?

Thanks to Alok Bathija, Neel Uppal, and Faiz Munshi for being my accomplices to the Barnes & Nobles during our college days. Steven Johnson for his awesome writing and being one of the thought-leaders behind Findings; John Borthwick and the entire Findings.com team !

Isaac Asimov to future patrons of a library in Troy, Michigan on 16 March 1971

Congratulations on the new library, because it isn’t just a library. It is a space ship that will take you to the farthest reaches of the Universe, a time machine that will take you to the far past and the far future, a teacher that knows more than any human being, a friend that will amuse you and console you — and most of all, a gateway, to a better and happier and more useful life

Isaac Asimov to future patrons of a library in Troy, Michigan on 16 March 1971

(I came across it on a BoingBoing post by Cory Doctorow on June 3, 2011)