In December 2016 in the UK, a successful trial of Prime Air drone delivery was completed. During this feat, a TV streaming stick and bag of popcorn were delivered directly to the garden of a nearby customer. Amazon gave its first public demonstration of a Prime Air drone delivery in the US, ferrying sunscreen to attendees at a conference in Palm Springs, California, in March 2017. These trials made clear that the future of the courier industry was about to change radically, with drones reshaping the way customers receive orders.
However, the biggest online retail store in the world, Amazon, still has to wait for the Federal Aviation Administration to craft rules regarding how a drone can fly over populated areas. This means that there is still time and issues to take care of before drone delivery becomes commonplace in the US.
No matter how much time it takes, Amazon is not holding back, given that the company has filed for a patent for multi-level fulfilment centers, or “urban drone hives,” to accommodate the take-off and landing of drones in dense urban settings, says an article in The Guardian, published on June 26, 2017.
THE DRONE AND COURIER INDUSTRY
While there are many concerns regarding the use of drones for courier dispatch, including the cost intensiveness, privacy issues, along with the weight of package a drone can carry, the logistics industry is not making the mistake of overlooking the benefits offered by this incredible aerial device. These benefits include faster and more convenient delivery services, eliminating both the cost of human labor and annoying wait times.
Even if they are not vocal about it, courier companies are making constant changes to incorporate these unmanned quadcopters in their dispatch services in the foreseeable future.
ADVANTAGES OF DRONE DELIVERY
No more a futuristic dream, drones can help fulfil a shopper’s goal of ordering online and receiving the package within minutes.
Drones will offer the fastest delivery we know to date, since they do not have to navigate roads with traffic, unlike delivery trucks that are currently being used by dispatch services. This will allow for the delivery of packages in areas that are difficult to access as well.
Not only benefitting the customers, companies using speedy drones for delivery will have an extra edge over the competition, ensuring effective last-mile delivery, says an expert at Key Software Systems.
Drones are well on their way to revolutionizing the courier industry, possibly easing the operational part of the process for courier services in the near future.