As one of the leading food couriers in the world, Uber has hinted that it is planning to launch food delivery drones by 2021. The new initiative will help the company to diversify its operations from its normal ride-hailing business. Uber has posted job advert seeking a drone specialist who can help the courier firm to realise scalable, efficient, legal and safe operations. Uber is interested in working with a drone expert who will make the food delivery drones fully operational within 36 months.
The Uber report was first covered in “The Wall Street Journal” five months ago after the US Transportation Department endorsed a commercial test plan for drones and engaged several local governments and reputed firms including Uber to cooperate on the devices. Dara Khosrowshahi, the Uber CEO pointed out that courier firm is targeting to design drones capable of delivering food to the doorsteps of customers after 5 to 30 minutes of placing an order. The chief executive also suggested that a time has come for Uber to look beyond cars. Uber’s intention to employ drone technology shows that the courier company will have more offerings in the coming than just the normal taxi business. The first public offering is scheduled for next year.
Uber has also been testing self-driving vehicle brands over the last couple of years and it is also planning to venture in the trailer leasing sector. Details have also emerged that the international courier firm is planning to engage in the short-term staffing business, under the banner of “Uber Works.” Experts in the industry forecast that Uber may hit a valuation of nearly £92 billion when the firm makes the initial public offers in 2019. The self-flying food couriers will help to beat the heavy city traffic. In 2016, UberEats worked with Dialexa and hosted a colorful event in Dallas that featured self-flying food couriers. The modified drones had the capability of carrying approximately 10 pounds and successfully delivered food to the visitors on the ground. However, the FAA-Federal Aviation Administration regulations require a human professional on the ground and the food drones are not allowed to fly higher than 400 ft.
Food drones have now become an integral part of Uber’s automation strategy and autonomous tech. Human drivers have been an essential component of the current business model, but they may be excluded in the future business models. However, human food couriers and drivers still remain a crucial source of Uber data which is quite instrumental in creating and maintaining autonomous technology. The strict aviation regulations in the US and other countries pose the greatest hindrance to Uber and other courier companies developing food-delivery drones. Scott Harper, the CEO, and co-founder of Dialexa has also affirmed that regulatory limitations are worse than technological limitations.