By now we have all heard of ordering buttons from other retailers. Kenmore, a Sears brand, has jumped on the bandwagon to launch their own. Introducing the Kenmore Alfie. I was excited to receive one in exchange for this sponsored review to do some shopping! What's different about Alfie is that he is not backed by a computer voice and a series of pre-programmed messages. Alfie is backed by a real person, a personal shopper.
Alfie allows you to either push the button for easy ordering, or use the accompanying app on your phone to place an order, or ask for information on just about whatever.
How to Setup the Alfie
Setting up the Alfie is pretty easy. Other than plugging in the Alfie to charge, you also need to install the Kenmore Alfie app from the App Store or Google Play store. Follow the simple directions on the screen to setup your Alfie.
I had a bit of trouble getting Alfie connected to my WiFi network. I had to start over a couple of times. The trick was to close the app completely and start over. I also had to increase the screen timeout time of my phone. It was set to one minute so the screen turned off before Alfie was done. The setup app reports that connecting could take up to one minute, which was accurate once I got it to work.
I also had trouble storing my credit card information in the app. Every time I put more than two numbers in the expiration date field, it added an extra /, which of course invalidates that field. Since I was using a gift card for my purchase, that did not have an impact on my order. But, I decided to try again, and had to just go back and erase the extra / manually. Luckily this worked.
Where to Use Alfie
The Alfie button can sit on your desk. Or, since the backing is magnetic you can stick it on the fridge! And it's very portable, so feel free to move it all over the house. But don't worry if you are not near it, in that case you can just use the Kenmore Alfie app on your smartphone.
I can see a great use for this when traveling and not sure where to shop, or eat. Instead of heading down to the hotel lobby, waiting in line, and asking the concierge just ask Alfie!
I can also see using Alfie a lot in the next few months when I move and have to furnish a home. Of course Sears is a great place to research and purchase tons of things for the home including appliances, patio furniture, tools, and much more.
How to Use the Alfie
I recently lost one of my favorite sterling silver hoop earrings. There is a chance that it is in a crevice in my car, but for now it is MIA. So, I'm on the hunt for new earrings. I pressed the talk button and said “Alfie, I'm looking for sterling silver hoop earrings.” She responded, “Ok. I will find the best options and get back to you.” Within minutes I had a text message in my Alfie app asking how much I am looking to spend. I responded, “No more than $50.”
After a couple more minutes the Alfie app responded with 3 choices of sterling silver hoop earrings.
I'm sure they would have sent many more, but I decided to stop it there because I liked them all. I responded that I would go with the first one. and to confirm that I wanted to proceed by typing “ALFIE FETCH” After I while I received a message that the order was being set up, and that I will receive a confirmation. I received the email confirmation just a little while later.
It's Not Just Sears!
Although Kenmore is a Sears brand, the Alfie searches more stores than just Sears! In some markets, it can even do groceries and meal delivery. Thanks to a Google search on my computer, it appears that the earrings that I decided to purchase are actually coming from a website other than Sears. If this is the case, how does Sears make money? Hmm… inquiring minds want to know! Seriously though, I think that is very, very cool. It opens you up to ever more shopping options.
Does it Work?
Overall I think the Alfie is a great idea. When I'm getting ready to purchase a product, no matter what it is… I usually research the heck out of it. The personal shoppers behind Alfie can save you some time by getting the research done for you. You are presented with several options, you can look them over, decide which to purchase and they will even place the order for you.
This means that instead of spending an hour looking for something online, I can ask Alfie to do it, and spend that hour working instead. My input it only needed to choose an item, and confirm the purchase. Pretty cool!
Based on my experience with the app I think it needs a little work. But I absolutely love the concept. I can see using this when I'm thinking about researching and ordering something, but don't really have the time.
For more information, check out the Kenmore Alfie website.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Kenmore. All opinions are my own.