Mumbai Pizza Chain Already Delivering Pizzas by Drone
The FAA, killing “Pizza by Drone” since 2011.
Would you like your pizza home-delivered by an unmanned drone? That may not be impossible in future, for a little-known pizza chain in Mumbai last week succeeded in making a test-delivery less than 3km away from its outlet in Lower Parel by using a remote-controlled, GPS-enabled drone.
The ‘customer’ was actually a friend of the chain’s CEO, so it was technically not a sale, as commercial deliveries by drones are not allowed in India. Yet, in a way, it was a first for a product delivery Amazon has only planned. On May 11, the drone took off from the Lower Parel outlet and, flying at a speed of 30km an hour, manoeuvred its way atop the city’s mill district to reach its destination, a high-rise in Worli, in nearly 10 minutes.
The drone dropped the 13-inch plain margherita pizza, weighing half a kilo, on the 21st floor rooftop (where it was collected by the ‘customer’) before taking off again for the return journey. The speed with which the delivery was made thus beat the record for most leading pizza chains, which manually deliver pizzas within 30 minutes.
The drone used in the operation was custom-made, said an official from the pizza chain, adding that an auto engineer friend of his had helped him make the flight possible. The official said the chain had carried out the test-delivery as an experiment because it wants to be ready when regulations in India allow for such methods of product delivery.
Drones are quite common in India. The motion picture industry there has apparently been using them for years.