Domino’s introduced a pizza delivery drone in the summer of 2013, and now it is going to start testing actual pizza-by-drone deliveries soon. The testing will take place in New Zealand, and is being done in partnership with drone company Flirtey. The company isn’t offering too many details about its plan at this time, though it does say it will kick off the testing later this year and that it’ll happen alongside ordinary (read: people-powered) pizza deliveries.
The idea of pizza drone deliveries spawned around the time Amazon made the idea of anything-drone deliveries public. Though we’re still a long way off from seeing any substantial number of drone-based deliveries, companies have been actively testing such systems, including Walmart and more, and Domino’s is no exception.
Many companies have been forced to look outside of the U.S. for its testing, though, due to difficult regulations in the nation. New Zealand recently instituted new UAV/drone regulations that allow companies such as Domino’s to carry out these tests. Assuming Domino’s likes what it sees with this test, it will be carrying out similar tests in half a dozen other places, including the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, France, Japan, and Australia.
As far as the New Zealand test goes, Domino’s will have limitations on what items can be delivered via drone, including things like how much the order weighs and where the customer is located. However, it could expand the number of items available by drone in the future.
The company has indicated that drone deliveries are more sensible than vehicular deliveries for many orders — if you’re just getting a small pizza, for example, having someone hop in an SUV to drive it over seems pretty wasteful.