Autonomous food delivery kicking off in California, Texas
Food delivery via autonomous vehicles is starting in the two largest consumer markets in the United States, California and Texas.
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In California, autonomous vehicle technology company Motional has partnered with ride-hail giant Uber to provide a convenient and innovative way to autonomously deliver food from selected restaurants in Santa Monica.
Being Uber’s first partnership with an autonomous vehicle fleet provider, testing is starting this year and official deliveries are expected in early 2023, by way of Uber Eats.
Motional's Hyundai IONIQ 5-based robotaxis will be used to deliver the food, the first time that its SAE level four vehicles will be used to make food deliveries.
Motional’s Hyundai IONIQ 5-based robotaxi (source: Motional/PRNewswire)
“We’re confident this will be a successful collaboration with Uber and see many long-term opportunities for further deploying Motional’s technology across the Uber platform.” Motional president and CEO Karl Iagnemma was quoted as saying by news portal Verdict Food Service. (pictured top left).
“Our consumers and merchant partners have come to expect convenience, reliability and innovation from Uber, and this collaboration represents a huge opportunity to meet, and exceed, those expectations.” adds Uber Eats US and Canada vice-president and head Sarfraz Maredia (pictured top right).
Meanwhile, autonomous pizza delivery has already started in Texas. According to Food Service Verdict, self-driving delivery company Nuro has begun delivering in Houston for Domino’s Pizza.
Nuro is using its R2 robot, a fully autonomous on-road delivery vehicle that has been approved by the US Department of Transportation.
Nuro R2 robot (source: Domino's Pizza)
Top Photo: left to right, Karl Iagnemma and Sarfraz Maredia (source: Linkedin)