Well, no need for awkward encounters, here's a robot to replicate the duties of your red-blooded delivery guy!
Eat24 (Yelp's food delivery investment) is partnering with Marble
, a robotics company, to test robot food deliveries around San Francisco. Marble claims to be "creating a fleet of intelligent courier robots to reliably and securely transport the goods that people need and want in a way that is accessible to everyone."
While the robot is efficient, it isn't a human-like at all. Instead of looking like your childhood android crush in Dragonball or the awesome Terminator, the clunky robot seems more like a photocopier machine on wheels. But as the famous adage says, don't judge the book by its cover.
This seemingly "simple" robot uses a combination of supercomputers, high-res 3D maps, cameras, and sensors! It is designed to go around the city with minimal collateral damage to passersby and your precious order. Not cool enough? It also has a built-in security system, ensuring that your Pad Thai or bagel orders are safe and won't be stolen along the way. Bad news for those really lazy ass though, it can't climb up to your fourth floor walk-up.
This, however, wouldn't be the end of the good old person-to-person delivery. The company's Head of Delivery Operations, Shalin Sheth, told TechCrunch
"People running restaurants are going to want to know, 'Should I start using technologies like this as they come online?' We need to figure out what works," which means this is still experimental.
Today, these street-savvy bots still have their human chaperone when delivering goods just in case they would go awry like your pubescent children. Still, can you imagine getting your late night pizza without having to put your pants on? That's the future I'm looking forward to.