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uCella upsizes the connected mailbox for online shoppers

uCella upsizes the connected m...
uCella's is intended to receive your packages when you're not home
uCella's is intended to receive your packages when you're not home
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As the delivery person arrives with the package, they scan the barcode with that specific tracking number and unlock the box
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As the delivery person arrives with the package, they scan the barcode with that specific tracking number and unlock the box
uCella expands to transform into a larger container to fit more sizeable packages, measuring 21.65 x 43.52 x 20.86 in (55 x 110 x 51 cm)
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uCella expands to transform into a larger container to fit more sizeable packages, measuring 21.65 x 43.52 x 20.86 in (55 x 110 x 51 cm)
As the delivery person arrives with the package, they scan the barcode with that specific tracking number and unlock the box
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As the delivery person arrives with the package, they scan the barcode with that specific tracking number and unlock the box
uCella takes the idea of a smart mailbox and upsizes it for larger packages
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uCella takes the idea of a smart mailbox and upsizes it for larger packages
uCella takes the idea of a smart mailbox and upsizes it for larger packages
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uCella takes the idea of a smart mailbox and upsizes it for larger packages
uCella expands to transform into a larger container to fit more sizeable packages, measuring 21.65 x 43.52 x 20.86 in (55 x 110 x 51 cm)
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uCella expands to transform into a larger container to fit more sizeable packages, measuring 21.65 x 43.52 x 20.86 in (55 x 110 x 51 cm)
uCella takes the idea of a smart mailbox and upsizes it for larger packages
7/9
uCella takes the idea of a smart mailbox and upsizes it for larger packages
As the delivery person arrives with the package, they scan the barcode with that specific tracking number and unlock the box
8/9
As the delivery person arrives with the package, they scan the barcode with that specific tracking number and unlock the box
uCella's is intended to receive your packages when you're not home
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uCella's is intended to receive your packages when you're not home

In the last few years we've seen a succession of connected letterboxes designed to modernize your mail by tracking incoming deliveries. But as the amount of shopping being done online continues to grow, so too does the size of the packages we need our mailboxes to regularly handle. One US company is looking to answer the call, with a smart, wall-mounted container that secures big packages as they are dropped off, and can even help arrange for their return.

uCella is a slim box measuring 21.65 x 24.52 x 3.85 in (55 x 62 x 10 cm) that you can mount to your porch wall yourself. Equipped with Wi-Fi and a companion app, the system synchs with popular email services like Gmail, Hotmail and Yahoo to pull tracking numbers from order receipts so when the delivery person arrives with the package, they scan the barcode containing that specific tracking number to unlock the box. This step is carried out with the help of a 5-megapixel autofocusing camera and 4-inch touchscreen built into the unit.

At this point uCella expands, transforming into a larger container measuring 21.65 x 43.52 x 20.86 in (55 x 110 x 51 cm) to accomodate more sizeable packages. With the delivery sitting safely inside, the app pushes a notification to the user alerting them of its arrival along with a photo of the delivery person. The user can then retrieve their package by scanning an in-app master QR code.

uCella takes the idea of a smart mailbox and upsizes it for larger packages
uCella takes the idea of a smart mailbox and upsizes it for larger packages

While securing incoming packages is uCella's main function, it offers a few other handy features, too. Through a built-in microphone, the carrier is able to leave voice messages that are then relayed to the user through their phone. Items that need returning can also be left in uCella and a request can be booked through the app, which in turn notifies the carrier and gives instructions on how to operate the device and pick up the package.

The app can also track shipments via a map view and monitors the levels of uCella's removable lithium battery, which should reach empty after about 30 days of normal usage. There's also a second built-in battery designed to keep the device running while the main battery is on the charge. The device is water-, dust- and UV-resistant and the exterior is crafted from military-grade composite materials, which the creators say can't be easily cut or torn apart.

The makers of uCella are currently looking to raise funds on Indiegogo for commercial production. Early pledges of US$129 are available, with shipping slated for March 2016 if the campaign runs as planned.

You can check out the pitch video below.

Source: Indiegogo

uCella - Delivery and Pickup Made Easy!

5 comments
Brett Johnson
If the main objective was to prevent packages from being stolen, then despite all the wizbang technikool stuff, it fails miserably. When there is no package it gets stowed flat against the wall, and when there is a package,it's extended down. Therefore it will be just as obvious that something valuable is on your porch, and yet this expensive contraption is at most an annoyance to a thief who must now cover their face and bring a box cutter to get through the fabric enclosure. Genius. Eliminate the non-rigid material = major improvement. Make it stationary instead of advertising payload = major improvement.
Alien
There is a need for a product like this. I am inclined to agree about the scope for theft but at least the camera will be some deterrent - even if not for determined thieves. My present concern though would be whether the scanning and communications system would be acceptable to delivery firms, who normally would demand a signature. Once approved by some major couriers (Fedex, DHL, Postal Services, etc.) then I think this could have a future.
Bob Flint
Ha what a joke, had a tablet delivered into our all metal local community mailbox, (it was -8 degrees C outside) sat there till the end of the day, chilled but still ran. On the other hand a few 50 cent LED's delivered by hand, no one was home, had to sign for it the next day at the local post office. Deliveries & security issues so far apart that it just doesn't make sense any more to try to get a signature for anything other than a passport sent via registered mail.
ShuaiJiang
Brett, Alien, this is Shuai, the creator of uCella. I will address your concerns – 1. Build Material - The outer shield is made of strong, durable composite materials with inserts. The metal chassis and framing are also very rigid. It is definitely not something porch pirates can easily cut or tear open, grab things and run. We are running extensive tests on the materials to ensure high quality. 2. Stationary vs. Expandable – We designed uCella to be a smart, good looking and protective product. Have a bulky box type of container sitting outside on the porch takes up a lot of space so many smaller homes won’t even have enough space to put it. Home Depot do sell large metal container for packages but you hardly see them anywhere. Now day, carrier trucks roam around neighborhoods doing drop-offs every day. It is already super obvious that where the packages are. uCella will keep the packages locked up safely and out of sight. 3. Scanning and communication system – we are utilizing the standard tracking bar code system. When you make an order online and then receive a tracking number for your order, uCella will capture the tracking number and set it as an unlocking passcode on the device. Carriers won’t have to make any changes on their system side to enable this process. Regarding packages requiring signatures, there are different types of signature requirements, most of the deliveries don’t require in-person signature. You can either sign a note or a delivery slip, place it on uCella. The delivery driver will collect the signature note and makes the drop-off. Very small percentage of the online shopping deliveries requires in-person signature. uCella cannot handle this particular scenario yet. Thanks!
Eddy
This will be useless for anything of value as all the firms I have dealt with send their stuff with a courier or Post Office and if no one is home to sign you have to go and collect with ID from the mail centre