Alexa Will Soon Pay for Your Gas at 11,500 Exxon and Mobil Stations
Amazon and ExxonMobil announced at CES Monday morning that voice commerce is coming to the gas pump. More than 11,500 Exxon and Mobil gas stations in the U.S. will soon provide the option for drivers with Alexa-enabled cars to ask the voice assistant to pay for the fuel, without needing a card.
Alexa Fill Up
When the new feature comes into effect, drivers pulling up to a pump will simply have to ask Alexa to pay for gas, then start refueling. Alexa will carry out the transaction via Amazon Pay and financial tech giant Fiserv, sending the appropriate amount to the Exxon or Mobil station. The car will need to be Alexa-enabled, like the recently announced Lamborghini and Rivian models, or have Echo Auto or a similar device installed. Because the transaction uses a customer’s existing Amazon Pay account, there isn’t a need for any additional sign-up to pay for the gas. You can see how it will work in the video above.
“As consumer expectations change, there is growing demand for frictionless interactions that span the digital and physical worlds,” said Fiserv senior group president of global business solutions Devin McGranahan in a statement. “The age of connected commerce is here, and voice-activated smart devices will play a pivotal role in the future of payments by streamlining the way consumers make purchases every day.”
Voice Commerce Fuel
Bringing voice commerce to gas stations is a natural extension of Amazon’s efforts to make it part of people’s everyday lives. Since October, customers of many utility companies have been able to pay their bills with Alexa. Amazon also encouraged customers to use Alexa for groceries when it expanded AmazonFresh and has partnered with other food brands who have launched Alexa Skills, such as Chipotle and Starbucks.
There’s plenty of evidence that voice commerce, in general, is on the rise. Voicebot’s 2019 Smart Speaker Consumer Adoption Report found that 15% of smart speaker owners made purchases by voice on a monthly basis at the end of 2018, up from 13.6% at the beginning of the year. And there’s a growing body of research and surveys that show that people would prefer to buy items like groceries or gas using a voice assistant compared to big-ticket items. The convenience element will likely be the deciding factor in this aspect of voice technology, much as it has been in other forms of digital commerce.