Excerpt via Washington Post
June 17, 2019 at 3:53 PM EDT
The human delivery driver may soon become a relic of the past as technology companies rush to automate food-delivery, which remains a modern-day gold mine of sorts.
On college campuses around the country, food deliveries via robot are becoming an increasingly common sight. After a fleet of 25 delivery robots from the Bay Area start-up Starship Technologies descended on George Mason University’s campus in January, campus officials recorded a spike in breakfast orders.
During the first day of deliveries at GMU, the machines were flooded by so many dinner orders that school officials had to pull the plug, shutting off orders so that robots weren’t operating late into the night, far behind schedule.
For months now, the robotics company Nuro has been using electric, self-driving vehicles to deliver groceries to Kroger customers in Phoenix and Houston.
Now the Silicon Valley start-up’s autonomous, unmanned vehicles — which resemble a giant pill bug on wheels and can reach 25 mph as they operate on major roadways alongside cars — have announced plans for a new mission: delivering Domino’s pizzas to customers.
How will Nuro’s pizza delivery work?
Once Domino’s customers in Houston place their order, they can track their driverless vehicle via the Domino’s app. Once the vehicle arrives at the delivery location, customers will be able to use a PIN code provided by Domino’s to unlock the vehicle’s compartment and retrieve their pizza.