FedEx and Facebook have created a new app called “Ship to Friends.” This app is supposed to make it simpler to send packages to Facebook friends.
The idea behind the app is that Facebook users can simply select a friend, and then ship out a package accordingly. Concept-wise, this app seems like a good idea. However, I found the app to be confusing and somewhat useless when tested.
Using the Ship To Friends App
The new Ship to Friends app is available here. When you reach the app homepage, you will be prompted to enter your current address, phone number, and email address (U.S. residents only). After that, you will have to select a friend to send a package to.
Here’s where the app doesn’t make any sense. If you start typing a friend’s name, that friend’s Facebook photo will appear – but, you still have to enter a friend’s home address in order to ship a package. See what the problem is?
This app doesn’t make it any easier to send packages to Facebook friends. The only way the app makes sense is if your friend has added a home address to a Facebook profile. But, who adds a personal home address to Facebook?
More likely than not, most of your friends do not have publically listed addresses. So, you will have to call that friend, get the address, and then fill it out using the Ship to Friends app. Unfortunately, the usefulness of this app doesn’t make any more sense at this point.
Sending out the Package
After finding and entering the right address, FedEx will send out a packaging label complete with your friend’s information. From there, you will have to print the label (if you have a printer), affix it to a package, and drop the package off at a FedEx location. The FedEx press release states that you can tell a friend that you’ve shipped a package by posting to that friend’s timeline.
What’s the difference between sending out a package the regular way and using the Facebook app? The pre-printed label and Facebook integration. That’s it. I see very little use for the Ship to Friends app, but maybe you do. Will you use this app? I suppose that the app is helpful if you are shipping out to a company that posts a complete address on Facebook.
This app may also be helpful if you don’t want to write a friend’s name onto a package. But, you’ll still have to go to the FedEx store to send your package.
You may also have to go to the FedEx store to purchase a shipping box or envelope. Heck, you’ll have to go to the FedEx store to send the package anyway, so you may as well just write in your friend’s name and address when you get there. I digress.
In any case, the Ship to Friends app is available today. If you find this app useful or see something that I don’t, let me know. The holiday season is upon us, and someone might find a use for this app eventually!