Is Digital Mail a Passing Fad?

Is digital mail a passing fad

There are a number of companies across the world that envisioned the lucrative potential of scanned physical mail arriving electronically online as the next evolution of mail. If the experience of one particular firm over the past five years is any indication, that prospect might not be as lucrative as once believed.

Digital mail is touted as a way to provide customers with electronic versions of documents previously delivered to a physical address. Billing statements could be viewed on a single account online rather than multiple accounts from various billing companies. Users could upload their own documents for storage in their online account, without a storage size limitation. The service was also free to account holders, with all fees paid by the mailers themselves. The catch was that the income generated from the venture might not be as profitable as digital mail providers envisioned.

Recently, the digital mailbox company Zumbox announced that it was pulling the plug on its operation. An official statement on its website states, “…the time and cost required to deliver on the vision is more than the market is prepared to invest.” Nearly all links on the company website are now disabled, and only their main page and closure announcement remain.

Customers of the business who stored their documents on the website are unlikely to be pleased with the development and could possibly return to receiving mail from a business that isn’t in danger of going out of business – the U.S. Postal Service.

Do you think digital mailboxes could still be a viable business opportunity if initiated by the Postal Service?

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1 Comment

  1. grannybunny

     /  April 29, 2014

    USPS is the only entity I would trust with a digital mailbox, as it is the only organization that would “do it right,” and that would be used by most of the mailers interested in sending digital mail. Zumbox sent me log-in information for my supposed digital mailbox — apparently, they were setting them up automatically, by delivery address, since I never requested one — and it never worked correctly. It’s a concept worth exploring, but — nevertheless — easy to see why they failed.

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