Google X graduate Wing has begun making drone deliveries in a trio of suburbs just outside of Canberra, Australia’s capital city. The Alphabet owned company says it’s tested the service 3,000 times over the past 18 months and is set to start the roll out to “a limited set of eligible homes.”
The service will be open to the suburbs of Crace, Palmerston and Franklin, adding customers in nearby neighborhoods “in the coming weeks and months.” Deliveries are currently open for a limited range of objects, including food (including, one assumes, burritos), coffee and over the counter items.
To start, the company’s partnering with several key partners, including Kickstart Expresso, Capital Chemist, Pure Gelato, Jasper + Myrtle, Bakers Delight, Guzman Y Gomez and Drummond Golf, promising delivery “in a handful of minutes.”
The company appears to be taking a very anti-Amazon approach to deliveries for the time being, looking to partner primarily with local businesses. There’s even a form for local merchants looking to take part in the early deliveries. Of course, given the small footprint of the program at the moment, it looks to be more of a publicity push for small businesses than anything else.
Wing says it’s also communicating with locals to make sure the thing goes as smoothly as possible. “Wing strongly believes that by working together with local policymakers, regulators, and communities, we can improve access to services, open up new economic opportunities, and better connect our cities,” the company writes. “We look forward to continuing this dialogue with the Canberra community as we expand Wing’s service.”
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