In New Zealand, pizzas will soon be dropping from the heavens, by drone. Domino’s dream of drone delivery is at hand.
Domino’s demonstrated its ability to deliver food via a drone Thursday in New Zealand and plans to test actual deliveries to customers next month.
“It doesn’t add up to deliver a two kilogram package in a two-ton vehicle,” said Scott Bush, a general manager for Domino’s Pizza Enterprises, which is independent of the U.S. chain and operates in seven countries. “In Auckland, we have such massive traffic congestion it just makes sense to take to the airways.”
A Domino’s customer who requests a drone delivery will receive a notification when their delivery is approaching. After going outside and hitting a button on their smartphone, the drone will lower the food via a tether. Once the package is released, the drone pulls the tether back up and flies back to the Domino’s store.
Initially there may be an extra charge for drone delivery, Bush said, but in the long term he hopes to deliver at no added cost.
Bush said test deliveries to actual customers will begin September 26 out of one Auckland store. The drone flights, powered by American drone company Flirtey, will be automated, but a human will be nearby to supervise. There are limits on how far Domino’s will be able to deliver. New Zealand’s drone rules don’t currently allow a drone to fly farther than the drone’s operator can see, but Domino’s said it’s working with authorities to remove barriers.
Drones can safely catty about 5.5 pounds.
Domino’s is hoping to expand drone delivery to Australia, Japan, The Netherlands, France, Belgium and Germany.
The US is not on the list.
Is this a terrorist’s dream come true?
People have pointed out terrorist implications of self-driving cars, but right now, someone could load a car with explosives, park the car and detonate it later. Not much has changed recently.
Drones would appear to be another concern. They are smaller, cheaper, and can go to any spot. Can they pack enough explosives?
Here’s a video that allegedly shows 4.5 pounds of C4 blowing up a bus.
Mike “Mish” Shedlock