Walmart launched a test program — a pilot project — on September 9, 2020, in Fayetteville, North Carolina, with the help of Flytrex, which delivers goods with drones and is an end-to-end drone delivery company, whose drones are controlled via the cloud.
A Walmart press release states that the deliveries will carry “select grocery and household essential items from Walmart stores using Flytrex’s automated drones.”*
By having the retailer’s goods delivered by drones, Walmart could be cutting out the middle-man when it comes to its home delivery service.
Walwart points out the following about the use of drone:
“. . . it will be some time before we see millions of packages delivered via drone. That still feels like a bit of science fiction . . . we’re at a point where we’re learning more and more about the technology that is available and how we can use it.”*
The company added that pilot projects will provide the knowledge needed to “help shape the potential of drone delivery on a larger scale.”*
Flytrex, a pioneer in the field of drones, started making deliveries by drone in Reykjavik, Iceland in 2017. Yariv Bash, Flytrex Co-founder and CEO, stated:
“Less than a year after, we realized that home delivery is going to be the killer application for drones. We were already certified to fly above Reykjavik … beyond visual line of sight … which [is] still unheard of in most of the rest of the world. Then the FAA started … a pilot program for advancing the framework of commercial drones. They heard about our prior experience in flying real commercial missions, so we got accepted.”*
Other FAA pilot program participants with Flytrex include companies, such as Amazon, Uber and UPS.
Walmart’s launching of the pilot program for drone delivery, with the help of Flytrex, is another step in progress of drone technology and business opportunities in the end-to-end drone delivery. Given the tremendous amount of customers Walmart has between online shopping, as well as, in stores all over the world, Walmart recognizes the tremendous benefit of drones both now and in the future, which is very exciting for the drone market!