Peapod to Upgrade Online Grocery Store

Online grocer Peapod Inc. said it plans a relaunch of its Web site, featuring a new version of its Internet supermarket.


This version, expected to be available by September, will complement Peapod’s
existing high-performance shopping system powered by its proprietary SuRF
technology, the company said.


The new Web site, using Internet-standard programming and protocols, will
provide for broad access to Peapod for anyone using a Web browser, including
via personal computers, Web-enabled televisions, high-speed cable services and
future devices. Additionally, the new version will more universally address
the requirements of corporate networks, providing easier access to Peapod
members who shop while at work.


Peapod said its SuRF-enhanced shopping application, released earlier this
year, was the first step in the company’s strategy to make its functional e-
commerce service broadly available via the Internet rather than through direct
dial-up. It combines the multimedia capabilities of the Web with Peapod’s
WinSurfer application controls.


The new Web site will offer an alternative to Internet shoppers who cannot
access Peapod’s SuRF-enhanced version, who choose not to install the SuRF
software components, or who do not require the enhanced speed and
functionality of the SuRF version.


“Over time, we expect the
addition of the new Web site and e-commerce system to positively impact
membership and order volume and to enable us to conduct more aggressive
Internet marketing activities,” said John C. Walden, chief operating officer. “Additionally,
as we transition current members
from our dial-up service to our Internet versions, we anticipate cost savings
from reduced telecom charges and more efficient content development.”


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