Shop via drones: How drone delivery can be a game-changer, e…

In the US, Christiansburg, Virginia, to be precise, people can get their burgers and shakes from Wendy’s airdropped via drone. San Francisco-based food delivery platform DoorDash and Alphabet’s drone-delivery service Wing have launched a drone delivery partnership in the US, starting this week, for local consumers. Burger lovers can now order eligible menu items from Wendy’s, the pilot’s first restaurant partner, through the DoorDash marketplace, and have them delivered via drone.

This isn’t the first time for DoorDash. A pilot programme that DoorDash and Wing launched in Australia in 2022 has since expanded to three locations in Queensland with over 60 participating merchants.

How does it work? The DoorDash customers with an eligible address in Christiansburg can place a qualifying order in the DoorDash app from Wendy’s. Once they select drone delivery and place their order, it will be prepared and packaged at the Wendy’s location and delivered via a Wing drone, typically in 30 minutes or less.

In the age of quick-commerce and convenience delivered at the doorstep, drone deliveries can be a game-changer for services and brands. This service is sure to reduce traffic congestion, be less polluting and make faster deliveries than most other modes of travel. Many companies worldwide have been ramping up their delivery services on drones primarily for food, pharmacy, grocery for fast and convenient customer experience.

Amazon has been working towards expanding drone services in the US and internationally, and its Prime Air, the drone delivery service operated by Amazon last year, announced the launch of drone deliveries into Italy and the UK by the end of 2024.

Amazon Pharmacy and Prime Air have teamed up to deliver medications to eligible customers and those with urgent healthcare conditions.

Another company, drone delivery startup Zipline, with more than 60 million flight hours, is partnering with businesses to deploy drone technology in the US cities this year, with plans to expand to 15 cities by 2025.

However, not all companies have had a roaring landing in their delivery attempts as many are yet to find success in the last mile. To deliver food, cartons of eggs, medicines flawlessly by drone, companies have to complete rigorous processes and logistically work out a lot of inefficiencies.

Amazon’s delivery drones have faced a few crash incidents in the past few years while testing. Besides the company is at risk of not completing a key regulatory requirement of the Federal Aviation Administration. The testing needs drones to complete hundreds of hours of flying without any incidents.

In India, recently, a drone delivering frozen chicken was stuck at a television antenna of a Gurugam house before it crashed on the ground. The Skye Air drone had to make an emergency landing due to the obstruction.

Another recent incident that went viral on social media happened during the unprecedented traffic congestion in Bengaluru last year, when a man was stuck on the road for hours and got his pizza delivered while he was in traffic.

In India, companies like Skye Air Mobility have tied up with brands like Flipkart, BlueDart and Licious, among a few others and attempted to deliver food, clothes, spectacles, and even gulab jamun in Gurugram. The services extend beyond Gurugram including Himachal Pradesh and projects include collaborations with institutions such as AIIMS Deoghar in Jharkhand, Regional Institute of Medical Sciences in Manipur, and AIIMS branches in Patna, Jodhpur, Rajkot, and Bhubaneswar, among others.

The company will add 20 drones and expand its network in Gurugram over the next few months.

Last year, e-commerce enablement platform Shiprocket also collaborated with Skye Air to empower Indian merchants with inclusive, tech-driven solutions to ease their business operations. Food delivery giants like Zomato, Swiggy, and Dunzo are also experimenting with trials. But there are more impediments than anticipated. India faces challenges such as securing permissions for operations, technical hurdles, surveillance and infrastructure issues like landing pads and charging stations to adopt safe and sound drone deliveries.

Whether such services will grow in the coming years, and companies will invest in drone delivery programmes and technology enhancements, only time will tell.

Previous The rise of drones: Shaping conflict dynamics in the Middle …
Next New-Age Tech Stocks End FY24 On A Subdued Note

Check Also

Eyes in the Sky, Boots Still on the Ground!

Eyes in the Sky, Boots Still on the Ground! Apr 22, 2024 Dem Boys Seh, …

US military base in Syria hit by FIVE rockets in ‘Iraqi dron…

A US military base in Syria has been struck by rockets in a Iraqi drone …