By Tim Werth
If you’re a millennial, chances are that you opt for food delivery pretty regularly. While 71% of travelers with kids say the potential to cook their own meals was what made them book a vacation rental for a trip, many single 20- and 30-somethings (and their partners) would much rather order in than slave away in the kitchen on a random Tuesday.
Fortunately, it’s never been easier to get some takeout from your favourite eatery. Phone apps like GrubHub, Seamless, Postmates, and DoorDash have made ordering a breeze; with just a few taps, you can pay for a meal and have it delivered to your door. But while these services are fairly cutting-edge, the delivery method is typically still traditional: a driver navigates to your location in their car and drops it off. That all could change in the near future, however, when Uber Eats launches their new drone delivery service.
The company, best-known for its ride-sharing service, branched out into the world of meal delivery a while back. But until now, their methods have been pretty comparable to others. One thing that sets the app apart is, like their ride service, you can track exactly where your driver is and estimate how long it’ll be before they arrive. That means that the 41% of consumers who say they eat pizza once a week won’t have to rely on Domino’s inaccurate delivery tracker feature anymore; they can use GPS tracking instead.
But Uber wasn’t content to stop there. They’re currently part of a coalition (along with Toyota and Airbus) to develop flying cars — and that’s not the only way they’ll be taking to the friendly skies. The company recently announced at an Elevate event that drone-delivered food orders are on the horizon.
According to Uber, the company will use the same “Skyport” technology for both their flying cars and their drone food deliveries, enabling fast takeoff and the ability to avoid congested traffic on the roads. Reportedly, Uber has already done some preliminary testing of drone flights in San Diego for this purpose.
Drones are being used for everything from entertainment to engineering, allowing both amateur enthusiasts and architects to accomplish their goals. This technology is also being embraced by major corporations, including Amazon, Walmart, and Google. That said, the execution of drone delivery has proven to be more difficult than anticipated in the past; many are sceptical that the idea will actually get off the ground (literally and figuratively).
But food delivery devotees are likely hopeful that Uber will figure out a way to make it work. It might mean that delivery times could be severely reduced, after all. So if you’re tired of waiting nearly an hour for your Chinese takeout to arrive, keep your fingers crossed that drone delivery will pan out.
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