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June 17, 2015 9:20 AM, EDT

Amazon Considering Skipping Carriers, Paying Regular People to Deliver Packages

Carl Malamud/Flickr

Amazon.com is developing an app that would pay regular people, rather than carriers like UPS Inc., to deliver packages, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Amazon would rent space from physical stores to hold the packages and people using the service, known as "On My Way," would deliver goods on the way to other destinations, according to the Journal.

Amazon declined to comment.

Amazon's shipping costs increased 31% last year, and the "On My Way" service could give the online retailer negotiating leverage with carriers, the paper reported.

The timing for “On My Way” is unknown and it is possible the company won’t move ahead with the program.

“There is a certain logic to the idea, but it seems there’s a lot that could wrong,” Marc Wulfraat, president of logistics consulting firm MWPVL told the Journal. “What’s to stop these people from simply taking the packages for themselves instead of leaving it on someone’s porch?”

The civilian courier is just the latest in Amazon’s delivery experiments. The company previously filed patents for a system of printing three-dimensional products on-demand from inside a delivery truck and has looked into the viability of delivery drones.

UPS ranks No. 1 on the Transport Topics Top 100 list of the largest U.S. and Canadian for-hire carriers.