the London-based company that has created six-wheeled self-driving will begin taking customers pizzas in Germany and the Netherlands.
Starship, launched in July 2014 by two former Skype co-founders, Ahti Heinla and Janus Friis, will whisk pizzas to customers’ doors if they live within a one-mile radius of certain Dominos pizza shops in "select German and Dutch cities," the company said in a statement.
the world’s largest franchise licence owner of Domino’s Pizza, with operations in markets across Asia and Europe, has formed a group called Domino’s Robotic Unit to oversee the project. Domino’s has tested ground-based autonomous vehicles for pizza delivery in Australia and New Zealand in 2016. In November it also delivered a pizza --peri-peri chicken-- by drone in New Zealand. ,
"With our growth plans over the next five to 10 years, we simply won’t have enough delivery drivers if we do not look to add to our fleet through initiatives such as this," Domino’s Pizza Enterprises Chief Executive Officer Don Meij said in a statement.
Starship’s battery-powered robot is designed to operate autonomously on sidewalks, not roads, and has a maximum speed of four miles per hour carrying loads up to 20 pounds. Its cargo hold, which customers unlock with a code sent to their mobile phones, is insulated and the pizzas will also be placed inside a special hot or cold bag similar to the ones used for motorcycle-based deliveries.
"Dependent on size, we can carry up to eight pizzas on a delivery or a variety of combinations of pizzas, sides and cold drinks or dessert products," the company said.
Starship is already food orders for Just Eat Plc in London, in the upmarket neighborhood of Greenwich. It also has partnerships for food, grocery and parcel deliveries with Postmates, DoorDash, Hermes Parcel Delivery Service, Swiss Post and Wolt in the U.S., U.K., Germany, Switzerland and Estonia.
Mercedes-Benz Vans, a unit of , $17.2 million in Starship in January. Mercedes-Benz has created that could serve as a kind of "mothership" or logistics hub for a small fleet of autonomous sidewalk drones like Starship’s. These vans could one day be self-driving too.
Written by: Nicolas Verbeeck
Nicolas was born in Belgium and became an expert in consuming excellent beers, chocolate and waffles. During the winter period you can find him on a hockey pitch and in summer he loves to go for a swim or a surf. In 2013 Nicolas was wondering what the beers, chocolate and waffles would taste like in Australia and never came back. One reason… the weather. Nicolas obtained a masters in International Politics and tries to use this background to produce excellent conferences at Akolade.