Gone are the days when you need to get up and walk your way to the grocery store (lest drive all the way there if it's far), here's "CargoPod" at your service--the first self-driving grocery delivery!
Ocado, a company that has no physical stores and solely delivers their products to the consumers. They're stepping up their game and is having a 10-day trial of the new "delivery guy" on London.
“We see it as adding choice,” Paul Clarke, CTO of Ocado’s tech arm, Ocado Technologies, tells The Verge
. “There are times when people will want their 50-item delivery brought to the kitchen table; times when they will order online and collect in store; and times when they’re coming back from the airport at three in the morning and just want a few things delivered quickly.” Just one call and the self-driving delivery will be there in no time!
UK tech firm Oxbotica's “CargoPod” is a mini-truck that can fit up to eight boxes of groceries and can navigate up to three kilometers of residential streets with the use of common cameras and sensors. This street-savvy bots, however, have two human chaperone (both from Ocado and Oxbotica) just in case they go awry like your pubescent children.
Just tap that screen and order your food online like you normally would, and unlock your crate when CargoPod arrives! Just press a button on it's side and you can collect the items you bought!
“Reactions have been incredibly positive,” says Clarke. “We offer to bring customers’ groceries to their front door, but they say ‘No, no, no, no: we want to come down and meet the animal!’ That may sound frivolous, but I think it’s important. People can be suspicious about new technology, and getting them excited about it is a big challenge.”
Will autonomous transport be the upgrade of our future deliveries? Well, take Clarke's word for it.
“We’re on the edge of quite a radical change to society with regards to AI and robotics,” he says. “I’d be surprised if other retailers are not at least thinking about this. They’d have to be asleep not to.”