Donut fans will be drooling with delight at news of one of the first donut deliveries by drone.
Drone-delivered pizza is all well and good, but the idea of flying machines carrying donuts on demand to salivating supporters of the sugary snack is yet another reason why the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) needs to get on with the job of finding further ways to relax rules for commercial drone-based ventures.
The special delivery, received by Denver Mayor Michael Hancock among others, was timed to coincide with Friday’s National Donut Day, ABC News reported. But more importantly (for those involved), it also highlighted the drone services offered by Texas-based Drone Dispatch while providing a spot of publicity for the tasty offerings of LaMar’s Donuts, which currently operates 25 stores across five states.
Several donut deliveries were made across a distance of just a single block, begging the question, “Why didn’t the recipients just go and collect them?” Because it’s a lot less fun, that’s why, and Drone Dispatch wanted to show how it can safely deliver items to people in urban areas. The company used a DJI Inspire drone for the exercise, carrying the box of donuts on a tether. While the system didn’t look particularly sophisticated, we’re happy to report that it got the job done without any major mishaps occurring.
Of course, the main reason the delivery route was so short can be put down to the aforementioned FAA regulations, which severely limit commercial drone flights in populated areas and insist pilots keep their machine in view at all times.
Mayor Hancock was evidently bowled over by the experience of having a drone deliver his donuts, describing the happening as “exciting stuff” while adding that technology encompassing drones and autonomous vehicles “is our future [and] this is how we’re going to become a more efficient 21st-century nation.”
While Amazon is continuing to develop its Prime Air drone that could one day deliver ordered goods to folks living close to its fulfillment centers, it seems to be food and drink that’s getting the most attention when it comes to deliveries by drone. Domino’s, for example, partnered with Nevada-based Flirtey to launch a limited pizza delivery service in New Zealand, and the same company has been working with 7-Eleven in the United States to trial deliveries of hot and cold snacks to customers. Even Google parent company Alphabet teamed up with Chipotle to test out a drone-based service delivering burritos to students at Virginia Tech.
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