Things are changing quickly in Logistics. Since e-commerce and dropshipping are thriving, carriers must adapt to this new paradigm. In addition, Black Friday and other massive online sales have challenged the old systems. What’s coming next?
Amazon Prime Air is one of the answers to this question. Amazon started to research and test drones with delivery in mind a few years ago, and many thought it was a joke or a hoax.
E-commerce has changed traditional business and Logistics will be transformed as traditional shipping companies can’t keep up with the current pace (demands are too high, and the competition is fierce).
Furthermore, self-driving cars are not science fiction anymore and delivery drones have become a reality.
For now, Amazon is leading but the other big retailers will follow soon.
There are other inventive options like gig economy couriers (but these alternatives are somehow limited).
HOW DOES AMAZON PRIME AIR WORK?
Amazon is already testing the service to deliver small parcels up to 5 pounds (2,67 kg.) in 30 minutes or less.
FACTS ABOUT AMAZON PRIME AIR
· The drone delivery project was announced in 2013.
· The initial testing took place in Canada (close to the USA border) due to legal restrictions.
· In 2015, the Federal Aviation Administration finally granted the permissions required for local testing.
· The United States Congress legalized the commercial use of the UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) in August 2016.
· The first delivery by drone took place in Cambridgeshire (England) in December 2016. Amazon is currently running more tests in the area.
— Jeff Bezos (@JeffBezos) 14 de diciembre de 2016
AMAZON PRIME AIR TEAM
The project was co-founded by Daniel Buchmueller, a former Swiss Captain and software engineer (not involved in the project anymore) and Gur Kimchi, Vice-President of Prime Air.
WHO DESIGNS AMAZON PRIME AIR DRONES?
Prime’s Air testing and development centres are based in Seattle (USA), Cambridge (UK), Clichy (France), Graz (Austria) and Tel Aviv (Israel). The teams are comprised of hardware and software engineers.
Moreover, Amazon is filing patents and projecting even more ambitious schemes to make the delivery process easy and convenient for everyone.
AMAZON PRIME AIR AND DRONE DELIVERY: PROS AND CONS
Let’s consider some of the advantages and disadvantages of using drones in the Logistics industry.
PROS CONS Material Gain Legal Restrictions Fast Service Tech In Development Reduced Costs Weather Issues Less Pollution Job Loss
I feel there is no way back, as the old ways are starting to fade. But challenges are good, and we can explore new possibilities.
In conclusion: it’s only the beginning and in time, we’ll get better at this.