Currently recognized as the the world’s second largest internet company is Amazon.com. The company was founded in 1994 starting as an online bookstore but soon diversified, selling DVD’s, video games, apparel, software, electronics, and many more products. This year Amazon continues to innovate and create a more competitive advantage over other digital marketplaces. On December 1st, 2013 the founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, announced on 60 minutes that the company will implement “Amazon Prime Air”.
Amazon Prime Air is a conceptual drone-based delivery system in development by the internet company. Bezos revealed that his company has been developing Miniature Unmanned Air Vehicle technology intended to utilize GPS to autonomously fly individual packages to customers’ doorsteps within 30 minutes of ordering. The only hurdle in the way for this futuristic delivery concept is that commercial use of UAV technology is not yet legal in the United States. United States Congress issued the Federal Aviation Administration a deadline of September 30, 2015 to accomplish a “safe integration of civil unmanned aircraft systems into the national airspace system.” If the FAA accomplishes this task, I believe amazon will start a trend for online retailers across the country. The U.S. government already uses UAV technology in this country and across the world. If they can use it, then that sparks the interest for citizens and companies like Amazon to start using UAV technology.
In order to get ahead and use this delivery concept quickly as possible, Amazon has petitioned the FAA for exemption from rules barring from testing drones in the United States. The petition’s purpose is for the company to be ready so they can launch its drones when the legal framework is resolved. According to Alex Wilhelm, the drones can fly up to 50 miles per hour. Amazon stated “One day, seeing Amazon Prime Air will be as normal as seeing mail trucks on the road today, resulting in enormous benefits for consumers across the nation”. If everything goes as planned to Amazon’s favor, this society will see major changes in the skies. Hopefully the FAA figures out a safe way to avoid these drones from crashing into commercial airplanes. Be prepared for miniature buzzing UAV machines to fly door step to door step in your neighborhood fulfilling online customers.
Publication: July 10, 2014