Should groceries come by drone, EVERYWHERE?

Nah. Ship them with common sense, instead (*).

Should groceries come by drone, EVERYWHERE? /img/grocery-drone.jpg

Could drone delivery of groceries, and consumer goods in general “become mainstream” even in cities, cleaning them of those lousy human riders who even dare demand sleep and money? It depends, says this article.

Up in the mountains, the sooner it happens, the better it is, if you ask me.

Cities are a totally different beast, of course. Besides increasing acustic and visual pollution, drones may crash on pedestrians for many reasons, going from faults to collisions with birds. But that would be nothing compared to physical limits, that is the fact that drones could never really reach customers living inside apartment buildings. This is why that article does not just discuss at length whether drone delivery could ever be feasible everywhere, but also asks “would we even want it?"

My suggestions for urban, large scale drone delivery

First, don’t get obsessed with flying. If the goal is to get rid of human riders, small driverless trucks may serve many urban neighborhoods just as well as drones, but safer.

Second, forget door delivery with any automatic system, at least for apartment buildings. It would be a colossal waste of money that should be spent in many other, much more effective ways. I already explained this one week ago.

Third, forget instant, or even same day delivery. Almost nothing that urban residents of “first world” cities buy really needs to be shipped within 24 hours.

Get rid of those expectations, especially the last one, and the whole “automatic delivery” thing becomes so easier that it may be actually happen, and relatively soon too.

Concretely: go for Singapore-style shipping, and transforming services like Amazon in SLOW standards.

(*) Oh, and if this post seems a partial repetition…

of this one, it’s not my fault. I’d really like to see some wider-ranging proposal of drone-based deliveries that does consider all these factors.