Drone delivery finally ready to start for Amazon Customers

Wilke said the drones are fully electric, can fly up to 24 kilometres, deliver in 30 minutes and carry goods that weigh up to 5 pounds (2.3 kilograms), like a paperback or toothpaste.

Anab Mehdi
Published on: 6 Jun 2019 7:20 AM GMT
Drone delivery finally ready to start for Amazon Customers
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Mumbai: Amazon said Wednesday that it plans to use self-piloted drones to deliver packages to shoppers' home in the coming months.

The online shopping giant did not give exact timing or say where the drones will be making deliveries. Amazon said its new drones use computer vision and machine learning to detect and avoid people or clotheslines in backyards when landing.

"From paragliders to power lines to a corgi in the backyard, the brain of the drone has safety covered," said Jeff Wilke, who oversees Amazon's retail business.

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Wilke said the drones are fully electric, can fly up to 24 kilometres, deliver in 30 minutes and carry goods that weigh up to 5 pounds (2.3 kilograms), like a paperback or toothpaste.

Amazon has been working on drone delivery for years. Back in December 2013, Amazon CEO and founder Jeff Bezos told the "60 Minutes" news show that drones would be flying to customer's homes within five years. But that deadline passed due to regulatory hurdles.

The Federal Aviation Administration, which regulates commercial use of drones in the U.S., did not immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday.

In April, a subsidiary of search giant Google won approval from the FAA to make drone deliveries in parts of Virginia. Wilke said that the company is working with several regulatory agencies to get approval.

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Zomato is keen to push for delivery of food via drone in India. "We expect to do it within months," he said.

Back in India, restaurant booking and delivery giant Zomato bought a specialised drone-centric startup earlier this year, and is likely to start its own service in the coming years.

Anab Mehdi

Anab Mehdi

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