Starship's wheeled robots are now the new delivery bots
Starship Technologies' wheeled delivery robots that travel on city sidewalks are now the new delivery bots.
The Tallinn, Estonia-based company unveiled its products this week in during the Web Summit conference. They hope their compact vehicles will help make delivery of groceries and medium-sized packages "almost free."
Starship co-founder and Chief Executive Ahti Heinla also helped found Skype. "We want to do to local deliveries what Skype did to telecommunications." Heinla said in a statement. Janus Friis, a co-founder pf Starship Technologies is also a Skype co-founder.
Starship is hoping that the battery-powered robots could replace delivery vans and trucks and be very useful in the e-commerce industry. If the ordered products are delivered more quickly, it is most likely that consumers will buy more frequently.
They hope that retailers and shipping specialists will want its robots, but the first to be seen in the real world will be in an early 2016 test program in partnership with Greenwich in the UK, Heinla said. The delivery robots are water-proof and can handle all types of weather. Delivery robots will have to be reliable, swift and theft-proof enough to match alternative delivery methods.
Starship's robots can carry up to 20 pounds in five to 30 minutes. The wheeled robots can travel at 4mph, which almost the same when you walk fast. The delivery of the vehicles can be tracked by customers online and can only be opened using an app that the receiver must download. The robots can navigate on its own but humans will make sure that the items are delivered.
In other countries like Singapore, they use airborne drones to deliver mail, ice cream and meals. In the US, airborne-drone delivery can only be possible not until the Federal Aviation Administration develop rules and regulations. Wal-mart, Amazon and Google have taken interest in drone delivery.