Jul 13, 2015
I love me some Google Now.
It’s one of those anchor apps I use on a daily basis, almost without thinking. Multitasking, hands-free operations, news… you name it. Still, one of the key ways I rely on it is to track packages. This is key in this line of work; we get review items in and out almost every day, going and coming from literally all parts of the globe. Google Now is a (sometimes) seamless bridge between information and access. Since we handle expensive equipment and devices, it really helps to when what arrives where.
But Google Now does treat package tracking in a finicky way when it wants to, and one big issue is that there isn’t a way to add packages that it didn’t originally pick up or remove on its own. While searching for a solution to this, I stumbled upon Deliveries Package Tracker. What this app looks to do is simple: provide a one-stop solution with regards to collating shipping information from a host of worldwide sources.
The UI is simple; it seems to avoid being too flashy, which is okay for what it purports to do. Upon opening the app, it’s fairly easy to see how it works: add a tracking number, tack on the source, and the app does the rest by pulling in data such that one gets movement information up to and including actual delivery.
Data can be entered by scanning (using a separate bar code scanner app) and can be typed in manually; it is especially helpful to copy a tracking number from an email using Android OS’s built-in share functionality to get it directly into Deliveries; this works very well in my experience. The services natively supported form quite the expansive list, and it’s probably easier to find a service not supported. One gets USPS, Fedex, UPS, DHL, TNT and whole lot more to choose from.
The pro unlock kills the ads and opens up a few more features; a key one is the ability to link one’s account to Google, Amazon and eBay. With this, one can seamlessly track shipments coming in from those services.
Some services can be especially difficult to work with; I found China Post to be truculent, but to be fair, that seems to be a function of the service. The need for a third-party bar code scanner sucks, but again, I can see where I’d prefer a thinner app anyway. The adjustable background update and multi-device sync are definitely valuable
All in all, it’s a pretty nifty app that does what it does well. Add this one to the indispensable list for folks who do even just the occasional online purchasing and shipping and/or receiving.