Domino’s has teamed up with a robotics company to test automated pizza delivery in Houston.
The robotics company, Nuro, has developed an unmanned vehicle known as R2 for deliveries.
Before the automated pizza delivery system goes up later in 2019, Domino’s is testing how unmanned pizza delivery will affect customer experiences. The vehicle also needs to be tested for its operational abilities, but Domino’s plans on making the automated delivery service ubiquitous sometime in 2019. Nuro raised over $1 billion from investors including Softbank, and the founders of Nuro were also the principle engineers behind Google’s Waymo, another self-driving vehicle project.
This isn’t the first adventure Domino’s has had with automated delivery and autonomous vehicles. The pizza chain has been through three rounds of joint testing with Ford. “Through all our prior rounds of testing we have learned that many customers are receptive to the idea of a self-driving vehicle delivering their pizza,” said Domino’s Executive Vice President Kevin Vasconi. According to Vasconi, many people actually prefer automated deliveries to drivers delivering their food, but some aren’t too keen to jump on board. Ultimately, it comes down to personal preferences, but there is definitely demand for automated pizza delivery.
The automated delivery service will be available to customers who order online from participating locations. Once an order is placed, the customer will be able to track the delivery from the Domino’s location to their home.