Domino’s seems to be getting closer to the future of food delivery systems everyday. The pizza joint has been one for innovation since the very beginning and its today’s announcement could redefine pizza delivery forever. The company has just unveiled the world’s first ever pizza delivery robot.
For those of you who think we’re kidding, we’re not! Anyhow, the robot that Domino’s has set wild on the streets of Queensland, Australia is called DRU (Domino’s Robotic Unit). The company defines it as an autonomous delivery vehicle which it has developed in collaboration with Australian technology startup Marathon Targets.
Apparently, little DRU is a $30k military-grade robot refitted for pizza delivery (Bad fate? We don’t think so). The robot uses a number of different technologies in order to travel the roads without a hitch and keep its contents safe and hot/cold. It can reach speeds of up to 20 kilometres an hour. This, its developers say, is just the current specification of DRU and speed boosts in the future could be expected.
It also houses a LIDAR sensory system that allows the unit to detect obstacles in its path and change its route accordingly. This is the same technology used in driver-less cars. It has built-in GPS that allows direct syncing with Google Maps in order to identify the surrounding environment.
What about safety, you might ask. Here’s Domino’s CEO Don Meij answer to that:
One of our inspirations for DRU is safety— it seems pretty crazy to us that we use one-and-a-half tonne vehicles to deliver a few hundred grams of pizza.
The robot is currently roaming around the streets of Queensland where it made its first deliveries in number of restricted streets permitted by the local transport authorities. The pizza chain is still unsure about when the technology will be fully road-ready but estimates say that we might see a significant upgrade in DRU over the next 6 months.
Regarding theft, DRU is completely air-tight to prevent anyone from snagging a free pizza and when it reaches its destination, the customer must enter a mobile code which will unlock it.
Domino’s also added that it will initially test the new droid in Australia and that it’s working with “global partners” to ensure the delivery robot meets the necessary requirements to be tested on roads and footpaths.