Seeing hundreds of flying boxes in the sky en route to neighborhood houses might be a far-fetched idea right now. However, in the near future, it just might be the norm. As our society progresses and our expectations yearn for better and faster services, drones can bring logistics to new horizons. In 2013, Jeff Bezos said we are much closer to a future filled with delivery drones than one with self-driving cars. Aside from providing a significantly faster way of delivering goods door-to-door, drone delivery brings a lot of other benefits as well. So, will drone delivery be the standard in logistics? Come fly with me, and let’s find out!
Will Drone Delivery Become Standard In Logistics?
What are drones?
Unmanned aerial vehicles or drones are automated flying vehicles that can come in many forms. Drones range from military-grade spy planes to remote-controlled flying toys. Though they were originally plane-like, most of the drones today are more similar to helicopters. This doesn’t just allow them to fly vertically and hover, it also makes them extremely maneuverable and allows them to safely fly through tight spaces. Drone technology has matured enough to the point that building one is not as expensive as it used to be. In addition, the introduction of lighter batteries means that drones can travel long distances while reducing both weight and drag.
What’s the deal?
Having drones deliver our online orders sounds cool and all, but do they really make a difference? Yes, totally! Imagine checking out online and receiving your order within half an hour. With our congested roads and the myriad of sorting facilities and routes that delivery trucks have to go through, a turnaround time like that is close to impossible. However, with drones, same-day deliveries could be the norm. This could also greatly help essential services such as emergency response. Drones are also purely electric, so they don’t cough out CO2 that pollutes the environment and contributes to global warming.
The road to the future of drone-driven logistics
As of now, a large group of companies (most notably Amazon) is testing the idea of regular drone deliveries. Just last year, Amazon (Prime Air) acquired FAA approval to operate drones for logistics purposes. This gives them more opportunities to flesh out the idea and make sure that it is as safe as it is efficient. They plan to make 50 percent of their last-mile deliveries consist of those made by drones by 2030 as part of their goal to make their logistics operations net-zero carbon.
Despite all the apparent benefits of drone delivery, it’s not all smooth flying for these mini-helicopters. There are several legitimate concerns about their potential impact on daily living. For one, a sky filled with hundreds or even thousands of flying drones could pose a health hazard. To add to that, legal concerns also arise such as who will be held liable if a drone falls out of the sky and damages the goods. Worse yet, if it injures or even kills a person. Various regulations still have to be put in place before we can see a future filled with delivery drones. For now, we just have to wait a little longer – for this future, and for our online orders to arrive.
Additional Reading: The FAA is Preparing for Delivery Drones in 2021
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