We’ve been wondering when it would happen. It certainly seems a change destined to come. What change? Say goodbye to the delivery truck – a drone will fly in and drop off your package at your door.
Well… there’s no more need to wait for the ‘first’ drone delivery. A company named Wing is delivering packages, over-the-counter medication, snacks and gifts to residents of Christiansburg, Virginia. The companies working with Wing are Walgreens, FedEx Express and a local company called Sugar Magnolia.
The announcement came as follows: “FedEx is completing the first scheduled e-commerce drone delivery in American history today, and becomes the first company in the United States to connect online retailers to last-mile drone delivery services.” Readers can find the full article at Medium.com.
Not to be outdone, UPS has announced plans to work with CVS Health to develop a prescription drug delivery service using UPS drones. UPS Flight Forward and its partner Matternet were the first drone delivery service to receive full certification from the FAA, and apparently they’ll be out and about soon.
For many, the question is… will Amazon be delivering holiday packages to our front door this year via drone? We know that Amazon has had drone delivery in the development stage with Prime Air, as the company introduced their drone onstage at a conference in Las Vegas where the CEO Jeff Wilke emphasized the safety features. The latest word is that Prime Air drone delivery service will launch in some cities late this year.
The goal for the finished Prime Air service is to create “fully electric drones that can fly up to 15 miles and deliver packages under five pounds to customers in less than 30 minutes.” While five pounds might seem a small package, Amazon says 75 to 90 percent of purchased items are under that weight limit. Readers can find more about Amazon’s plans at TheVerge.com. 
To this date, drone deliveries have not been prescriptions and small gift packages. Drones have instead been used for non-commercial humanitarian purposes. Also, most of what we have seen in the news has taken place outside of the US, under different laws, or in rural areas of the US.
For example, the company Matternet partnered with UNICEF to do drone delivery in Malawi. The goal was to deliver a blood sample to a testing facility so that diagnosis could be done in time and medical drugs be given. John Hopkins University has also been doing blood drone delivery tests and published their findings in a medical journal. Drones in this case can save money, time, and lives.
At AMS Fulfillment we are watching, and excited about the next step in package delivery. Perhaps your holiday packages will come flying in, over the house, past the chimney to your front door this year.