Drone on your doorstep: UK start-up trials delivery service

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A UK start-up is testing out a drone delivery on demand service, delivering small items between addresses via your smartphone

By Rhiannon Williams – www.telegraph.co.uk

Leaving your keys at the office could be a thing of the past as a UK start-up trials its drone on demand delivery service, which could rival Amazon in the future.

BIZZBY, based in London’s TechCity, has developed a fully autonomous drone equipped with a secure storage box capable of holding items weighing up to 500g. It can fly up to 400 feet into the air, avoiding collisions with birds and other obstacles thanks to several sensors.

New service BIZZBY SKY summons a drone once a customer books a drone to deliver their object and agrees to the specified price via their smartphone. The drone’s journey can be tracked via real-time footage of its airborne travels through the skies streamed within the app, while pixelating anything identifiable.

“Although it may seem futuristic, technology is advancing rapidly and it’s a matter of time before we’re able to roll the service out to the public,” said founder and chief executive Rohan Sinclair Luvaglio.

The use of drones for commercial purposes has been explored for years, with Amazon chief Jeff Bezos proposing the use of unmanned drones to deliver small packages last December.

The system, called Prime Air, could dispatch products within half an hour of ordering, and be commonplace within four to five years.

Google announced its own drone goods delivery service in August, which it said could help provide aid to disaster-stricken areas.

The company flew chocolate bars, dog treats, cattle vaccines, water and radios between locations in the Australian outback over a week.

Concerns have been raised over the safety and efficiency of drone delivery. The Civial Aviation Authority (CAA) is yet to authorise the use of drones and other unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) within populated areas, and a fully automated drone cannot currently weigh more than 22 kilos without the CAA’s permission.

A Lords committee investigating the civilian use of drones met with operators and developers last week to discuss regulations around the civil use of the machines. Mr Luvaglio has created an e-petition requesting the government to consider a Drone Bill to permit the use of drones for filming and deliveries within the UK.