By now, everyone has seen the video of a UPS drone delivering goods. They have also seen the Amazon drone commercial–Prime Air–doing the rounds. Why are drones suddenly becoming so common? Is this the future of online shopping deliveries? Why are so many companies using a package delivery drone to get the job done? We take a look at this phenomenon in this article, hoping to answer just those questions.
Understanding the Advantages
There are many benefits to using shipping drones for delivery instead of more conventional methods. Delivery drones are a more convenient and timely option for delivering packages, especially to outlying and remote areas. Drone delivery services have the potential to revolutionize the logistics industry and are already doing so, but they face many challenges still. These problems involve security, technology, logistics, and the law. But for now, let’s consider the benefits:
Reduced Wait Times
Most drone delivery systems are semi-automated, allowing drones to be deployed quickly. The drone will receive all the instructions it needs from the control center to successfully deliver the package as soon as the package is attached. Due to the fully autonomous nature of drone flight, we can expect zero delays or traffic jams.
Using drones for delivery will have a positive impact on a business’s bottom line in a number of ways. Unlike people, drones don’t get sick or lost. There will also be no fuel costs because they are battery-operated. Since the actual drone delivery operation is fully autonomous, there are also reduced labor costs.
For the greater good of the planet, logistics firms consistently seek out ways to lessen their fuel consumption and carbon footprint. Drones can be used at the end of the supply chain to drastically cut back on the amount of fossil fuels needed, which in turn saves money and benefits the environment.
Safer, Autonomous Shipping
Drones equipped with precise GPS technology and cutting-edge navigation systems will complete the final leg of the delivery journey independently. Customers can choose to have their packages delivered directly to their homes, or to a central location where they can retrieve their packages by scanning a QR code or similar.
Easier Shipping to Remote Areas
It’s clear that remote areas have benefited greatly from drone shipping, especially for the delivery of life-saving necessities like medical supplies and appliances. Drones have been used to deliver life-saving medications to countries like Rwanda and Ghana in as little as 45 minutes after an order is placed. Many rural communities around the world have also benefited from the use of drones to transport covid-19 vaccines.
Examining the Disadvantages
There will always be obstacles that must be surmounted before a new technological system can be implemented across an industry and bring about the desired results. Drones are not exempt from this, and we have talked about certain aspects of these challenges before.
Despite the fact that many businesses are already offering drone delivery services with some degree of success, there are some obstacles that must be overcome before the industry as a whole can expand rapidly. It is time to understand some of the very real challenges plaguing the future of drone delivery. These are:
Only local deliveries can be made at this time because even the most powerful drone has a short flight time due to the lithium-ion batteries it uses. This means that deliveries can only be made within a certain area. Therefore, businesses are limiting their drone delivery services to the immediate area.
Drones, being smaller than other aircraft, will be affected by stormy conditions. A lot of delivery drones are made to fly in the rain and cold, but they still pose a risk if the wind is blowing too strongly.
Concerns over personal privacy may also arise from the fact that many drones will have cameras installed for security reasons, particularly to deter theft. Nonetheless, privacy concerns would arise if the camera were to remain active throughout the delivery.
High Initial Cost
Establishing a delivery system that relies on drones will require a significant time commitment and a sizable initial investment. Drones, a delivery system, and the cost of training pilots and other operators, among other things, will add up.
Theft and Hacking Risks
Due to their low altitude flight, these drones will be easy targets for hacking and theft. In extreme cases, hackers may attempt to take command of the drone in order to reroute it to a different location.
What Does the Future Hold?
Drone delivery has a bright future ahead of it, and the industry as a whole is expected to expand rapidly in the coming years as more and more businesses follow Amazon drone use and deploy their own. People will be more receptive to having packages delivered by drones if they see how effective they have been in helping remote communities get essential medical supplies like the covid-19 vaccinations.
As you can see, drone delivery has the potential to become a widespread solution among commercial businesses, retailers, and consumers. If you want to get in on the action and need a leg up, PIRS Capital is always there to give you the initial boost in finances that you might need. Give us a call today if you want to know more details!