Amazon to deliver your online orders using drones

An undated handout photo released by internet giant Amazon on December 1, 2013 showing a flying "octocopter" mini-drone that would be used to deliver small packages to consumers. PHOTO | AMAZON | AFP

What you need to know:

  • The US has been using drones solely for security reasons and it remains to be seen whether authorities will approve its use for commercial purposes.

The world’s largest retailer Amazon is testing unmanned drones to deliver goods to customers.

The Amazon chief executive Jeff Bezos told CBS television that drones could be used to deliver packages weighing upto 2.3kg to the customer within 30mins.

The online retailer may start using the drones within a period of 5 years pending approval by the US authorities.

“I know this sounds like fiction but it will happen,” he said in the 60min long programme.

The US has been using drones solely for security reasons and it remains to be seen whether authorities will approve its use for commercial purposes.

If the move succeeds the drone will join a number of military inventions that have found their place in the civilian life such as the four wheel drive hummer among others.

Amazon just like any other online store has been working to deliver customer goods as fast as possible compared to the brick and mortar ones.

The drones dubbed 'octocopters' are fitted with GPS technology which enables them to locate destinations and drop the packages at the exact point.

The mini drones could cover a radius of about 16 kilometers making them useful especially in urban settings.

Amazon says the move is informed by the need for the store to remain ontop of the market that is facing tight competition from other players.

The service called Prime Air will be able to deliver 2kg orders which form 86 per cent of orders from customers.

Australian textbook rental firm, Zookal had earlier said it will start doing deliveries from 2015 pending approval.

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