“Domino’s rolls out driverless delivery vehicles” blared the headline on the Dominos UK website on April Fools Day. They even provided a short video clip of the phony vehicle delivering pizzas.
April Fools Day aside, it won’t be long until many delivery companies will use autonomous vehicles. Companies like FedEx, UPS, DHL, Dominos, Pizza Hut, Papa John’s, Little Caesars, Amazon’s Prime Air (and a million Chinese restaurants) are all working on the concept.
FedEx CEO Fred Smith has stated in many interviews that FedEx is working on using unmanned aircraft cargo planes for the future. He has even described a new “blended wing” design as being appropriate for FedEx’s needs. A blended wing plane such as he described is being developed by Boeing – their X-48C unmanned aircraft. The plane has already been flight tested by NASA and Boeing and will be capable of transonic speeds.
Autonomous vehicles, whether air, land or sea are flourishing. Investment dollars are flowing. And ideas such as Dominos’ won’t just be an April Fools Day joke for too much longer.