Drone Service Used to Deliver Textbooks within Minutes
Australian textbook rental company Zookal has partnered with Flirtey, a commercial drone service, to ship some Australian students their books just minutes after they place an order.
A user makes a purchase on his or her smartphone, and selects Flirtey as the delivery method of choice. Back at headquarters, the purchased items are packed up and attached to the drone.
Total time from submitting an order to having the book in your hand can be two or three minutes.
At first, the drones will be able to deliver books within a kilometer radius from a dispatch center, but as the team improves the technology, they hope to increase delivery distance to five or 10 kilometers.
Australian students will be able to choose drone delivery starting in March 2014. Zookal plans to test the drones in Asian markets before bringing them to the United States in 2015.
The drones have built-in collision-avoidance technology to make sure they don’t cross paths with birds, trees and buildings. Flirtey is a hexacopter, meaning it flies with six rotors, and can still function if one of them is lost or damaged.
Right now, the only goods you can have shipped via drone are textbooks and other educational supplies, but in the future, Zookal hope the technology can be utilized by other companies to ship clothing, electronics, homewares and and other goods.
Image source: Zookal