Google has quietly launched Areo, an Android app to let you order food, as well as hyperlocal home improvement and personal services from local providers in India.
Currently available in the cities of Bangalore and Mumbai, it aggregates food delivery, beauty, home maintenance, household repairs, fitness training and physiotherapy, and other services. You can schedule visits from professionals and pay for purchases through the app.
It’s signed up local partners UrbanClap for home services, and Freshmenu, Box8 and Faasos for food delivery. Each of these businesses have their own mobile apps and are the food services are available through other popular aggregators like Swiggy and Zomato.
So with Areo, Google is hardly reinventing the wheel, but it is testing the waters in a space that it hasn’t ventured into before. Its decision to do so in India likely has a lot to do with the company’s interest in being the first to offer a range of online services to citizens accessing the web for the first time, as CEO Sundar Pichai explained in a keynote in 2015.
In recent times, Google has launched numerous products and services for India, including YouTube Go for data-conscious viewers, Google Play Music Unlimited for streaming tunes, carrier billing in the Google Play store for apps and content and a public toilet locator on Maps in the capital of New Delhi.
It’ll be interesting to see how Areo is received in India, and if it leads to the launch of this service in other markets around the world.
If you’re in India, give Areo a go by grabbing it from Google Play.