Amazon testing delivery by drone

Creeperbane2Creeperbane2 Victorian ScoundrelIndianapolis, IN
Looks like Amazon has found an actual use for civilian grade drones, delivery in 30 minutes or less!
http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/2013/12/01/amazon-bezos-drone-delivery/3799021/

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  • oni_delsoni_dels Drunk French Canadian Montréal, Québec.
    another transport-related job where robots are stealing jobs from people...
    Creeperbane2MrTRiotUPSHitman
  • TushonTushon I'm scared, Coach Alexandria, VA
    No amount of government regulations will stop the Terminators.
    But what about when the government IS the terminator? Thanks Obamapalinbachmannator.
    GHoosdum
  • MrTRiotMrTRiot Living in the North
    There are a lot of variables for Amazon concerning this endeavour. I have a feeling this is either going to work spectacularly or fail miserably in a robot fuelled terminator/matrix disaster.


  • midgamidga "There's so much hot dog in Rome" ~digi (> ^.(> O_o)>
    This is going to make for some lulzy accidents.
    UPSHitman
  • ThraxThrax Professional Shill, Watch Slut, Mumble Hivemind Drone Austin, TX
    Robot overlords, etc.
  • For this to be effective, they'd have to have a warehouse with all products in each major city instead of a handful of warehouses in each region.
  • BandrikBandrik Elkhart, IN
    Neat! I like the idea of minutes-away delivery. Of course, FCC and FAA will make it a legal nightmare. Also, small aircraft like that are very susceptible to wind speeds of any kind. I can see this service being impractical in many areas that are frequently windy.
  • Straight_ManStraight_Man Geeky, in my own way Naples, FL
    I was watching 60 minutes, they said within 10 miles of a warehouse to start. Circa 4-5 years to deploy.
    UPSHitman
  • Charlie Rose could not of had a bigger boner for Jeff Bezos. Lobbing him softballs to smack out of the park. That Sixty Minutes segment was just an advertisement for Amazon.

    I do have to admit though, I saw the drones and got giddy. I was in a hospital recently with a robot cruising the hall and had to do a double take. All my childhood fantasies are quickly becoming real.
    oni_delspigflipperSignal
  • NiGHTSNiGHTS San Diego
    What a wonderful way to get people talking about Amazon just before Cyber Monday!

    In all seriousness, though - I can't see this working, even in limited capacity, for a good 3-5 years. China does it already, though, so who knows.

    I, like, commas.
  • CantiCanti =/= smalltime http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y9K18CGEeiI&feature=related
    I don't see this working either. Can you imagine how many family dogs are going to attack these things when they land or how many jackasses are going to make a game out of stealing/destroying them?
  • CantiCanti =/= smalltime http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y9K18CGEeiI&feature=related
    Also that.
  • Creeperbane2Creeperbane2 Victorian Scoundrel Indianapolis, IN
    image

    -Digi
    LoL, but folks that hunt drones (yes that is actually a "thing") are usually after......bigger.....game shall we say
  • BandrikBandrik Elkhart, IN
    edited December 2013
    ...or how many jackasses are going to make a game out of stealing/destroying them?
    Good point, though I'm sure there will be safeguards in place. To me that's the equivalent of stealing a delivery guy's truck. The buggers will most likely be constantly reporting back their location and camera feed. So if one mysteriously "disappears", they could play back the entire trip and see where it vanished, and who can be spotted nearby. And if you order something from Amazon, they know your address and credit card info. I'm sure they would find some way to charge you for the drone or pass the GPS and video data to the local police.

    TL;DR: may God have mercy on the the poor souls that dare to cross our Amazon overlords.
  • My coworker brought up the prospect of having pizza delivered by drone. Specifically, smart phone app to order pizza, allow it to track your location via GPS, drone delivers pizza directly to your GPS location. It could be AWESOME. Also, a total dystopian nightmare.
  • IlriyasIlriyas The Syrupy Canadian Toronto, Ontario
    The drones Amazon cited as to be used are unable to fly, safely or functionally in high or even medium density urban areas, there are numerous safety concerns with packages falling from the sky onto people's homes, through car windshields, etc. and to top it all off they're completely incapable of carrying anything heavier than say, 20lbs.

    As for them being shot out of the sky and the like, it's a hell of a lot more difficult to rob a truck of its cargo or even the truck itself (A big old UPS, USPS, or Canada Post delivery vehicle doesn't exactly disappear or blend in) as they can be easily found standardized drones can be repainted, easily scrapped, buried, etc.

    It's certainly a really neat advertisement angle and it's brought them a ton of publicity, but that's really all that it will ever be it's simply too impractical to implement and to throw in on top of it the FAA is pretty much vehemently opposed to the idea.

    Also, even though I don't think its what @Bandrik meant. The idea of being charged yourself for some other asshole shooting down or otherwise stealing the drone is a terrible idea, no way in hell would I be willing to pay the equivalent of a new multi-rotor for a $60 parcel of comic books.
  • ThraxThrax Professional Shill, Watch Slut, Mumble Hivemind Drone Austin, TX
    How will Amazon drones find airspace with government drones clogging the skies to spy on us?
    MAGICTushon
  • TushonTushon I'm scared, Coach Alexandria, VA
    The drones Amazon cited as to be used are unable to fly, safely or functionally in high or even medium density urban areas, there are numerous safety concerns with packages falling from the sky onto people's homes, through car windshields, etc. and to top it all off they're completely incapable of carrying anything heavier than say, 20lbs.

    As for them being shot out of the sky and the like, it's a hell of a lot more difficult to rob a truck of its cargo or even the truck itself (A big old UPS, USPS, or Canada Post delivery vehicle doesn't exactly disappear or blend in) as they can be easily found standardized drones can be repainted, easily scrapped, buried, etc.

    It's certainly a really neat advertisement angle and it's brought them a ton of publicity, but that's really all that it will ever be it's simply too impractical to implement and to throw in on top of it the FAA is pretty much vehemently opposed to the idea.

    Also, even though I don't think its what @Bandrik meant. The idea of being charged yourself for some other asshole shooting down or otherwise stealing the drone is a terrible idea, no way in hell would I be willing to pay the equivalent of a new multi-rotor for a $60 parcel of comic books.
    You're cliff now :)

    Taking an advertisement for a future service and extrapolating the entirety of possibility from it ("that's really all that it will ever be"). I don't think you know Jeff Bezos.
    midgaThraxBandrik
  • BandrikBandrik Elkhart, IN
    I don't think its what @Bandrik meant. The idea of being charged yourself for some other asshole shooting down or otherwise stealing the drone is a terrible idea, no way in hell would I be willing to pay the equivalent of a new multi-rotor for a $60 parcel of comic books.
    All I really meant by that is that to use the drone service, Amazon.com would have all of your personal information. Assuming they would have good enough surveillance video to ID the perpetrator, they would have everything they would need to pass on to the police to cross-reference and prosecute.
  • CantiCanti =/= smalltime http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y9K18CGEeiI&feature=related
    How the hell did you guys manage to twist what I said into Amazon charging the customer for another person dicking up a drone?
  • BandrikBandrik Elkhart, IN
    Because this is why we cannot have nice things.
  • How the hell did you guys manage to twist what I said into Amazon charging the customer for another person dicking up a drone?
    I didn't, I knew exactly what you meant. Basically some non-customer just chillin, shootin drones, lootin crates.
  • IlriyasIlriyas The Syrupy Canadian Toronto, Ontario
    It will be more likely to see drone driven trucks than individual flyers, efficiency is a big thing and a truck that can make 15 deliveries an hour will always be better than 2 per
    midgaCreeperbane2
  • midgamidga "There's so much hot dog in Rome" ~digi (> ^.(> O_o)>
    It will be more likely to see drone driven trucks than individual flyers, efficiency is a big thing and a truck that can make 15 deliveries an hour will always be better than 2 per
    Oh, Ily. I wish I could lulz this a dozen times.
  • TushonTushon I'm scared, Coach Alexandria, VA
    It's simple. We'll just give them non-lethal lasers ... and to save cost, the lasers will simply be governed lethal lasers from the STARWARS program. Nothing can go wrong!
  • On a more serious note. While we may not see drones used by amazon, they're already being used by farmers.

    http://norfolkdailynews.com/news/drones-finding-their-way-into-agriculture/article_bec51a94-68c0-11e3-8900-001a4bcf6878.html

    While Americans are abuzz about Amazon’s plans to use self-guided drones to deliver packages, most future unmanned aircraft may operate far from the nation’s large population centers.

    Idaho farmer Robert Blair isn’t waiting around for federal aviation officials to work out rules for drones. He and a friend built their own, outfitting it with cameras and using it to monitor his 1,500 acres.

    “It’s a great tool to collect information to make better decisions, and we’re just scratching the surface of what it can do for farmers,” said Blair, who lives at Kendrick, Idaho, roughly 275 miles north of Boise.

    Experts point to agriculture as the most promising commercial market for drones because the technology is a perfect fit for large-scale farms and vast rural areas where privacy and safety issues are less of a concern.

    Blair’s drone, built in 2008, isn’t breaking the law because his aircraft is essentially a model airplane — allowed by the FAA as long as it’s flown below 400 feet above ground level, far from populated areas and no one is compensated for the flight.

    Already, farmers, researchers and companies are developing unmanned aircraft systems equipped with cameras and other sensors to survey crops, monitor for disease or precision-spray pesticides and fertilizers.
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