Shopping no longer has to involve leaving the house

Last month, I covered a new trend that’s happening in technology here and that is companies leveraging on the motorbike culture, and one of the sectors in that market is e-commerce. Now, in Vietnam, you can get just about everything online.

On Tiki.vn, Vinabook.com, and Bookbuy.vn, you can get a wide range of books even English ones. Gone are the days when you had to order on Amazon just to get the latest book sent all the way to Vietnam, not to mention dealing with huge international shipping costs. For Eva.vn and Noyyo.com are quickly becoming the main sites women are buying online for lingerie. And of course, if you’ve been watching Vietnamese television, you know that Lazada and Zalora are probably the two biggest e-commerce companies in Vietnam, offering everything from fashion to electronics and even furniture. And on VatGia.com, you can even buy an electric golf cart. I’ve been ordering new mattresses, clothes, and books and payment is cash on delivery. Some sites even allow you to return the product if you’re unsatisfied with it.

Basically, Vietnam is on the cusp of a super-aggressive e-commerce market where there is an overflow of players. At last count, there are over 35 different e-commerce sites online from general sites that sell everything to specific sites that sell only shoes. And I don’t think this will resolve itself anytime soon; we probably won’t see a dominant Amazon-like player in Vietnam until 2014 or later. The war rages on.

App of the Month

315343228_640
One of the coolest new iPhone apps (an Android version should come later this year) out of Vietnam recently is Fuzel. It’s a photo collage-making program that goes one step over Instagram by making it really easy to stitch photos together and share with your friends. The app is going global and has already been featured as Editor’s Choice on the Apple Appstore. It has received over one million downloads already, with about 50 percent of users in the West. That’s a big achievement for an app out of Vietnam.

The app’s really slickly designed, something you don’t normally see in Vietnam, and easy to use. So I highly recommend you give it a try to spice up your Facebook profile because Instagram is probably on the outs.

A Basement Studio has also released another app earlier this month called KeepShot that allows users to assemble albums together and then send them to your doorstep as a nicely printed out photobook. Unfortunately, this one only works in the States now.

BioAnh-Minh Do is the editor at TechInAsia.com for Vietnam focusing on technology startups, trends and companies. Minh also organizes events at Evecoo.vn