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Thread: Amazon Unveils Futuristic Mini-Drone Delivery Plan

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    Franc Tireur's Avatar
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    Amazon Unveils Futuristic Mini-Drone Delivery Plan

    Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos revealed Sunday that his company is looking to the future with plans to use "octocopter" mini-drones to fly small packages to consumers in just 30 minutes. The US retail giant's ambitious project still requires additional safety testing and federal approval, but Bezos estimated that Amazon "Prime Air" would be up and running within four to five years.
    A demo video posted on the company's website showed the tiny robotic devices picking up packages in small yellow buckets from Amazon's fulfillment centers and then whizzing through the air to deliver the items to customers just 30 minutes after they made their purchase on Amazon.com.

    "I know this looks like science fiction. It's not," Bezos told CBS television's "60 Minutes" program.

    "We can do half-hour delivery... and we can carry objects, we think, up to five pounds (2.3 kilograms), which covers 86 percent of the items that we deliver."

    The mini-drones are powered by electric motors and could cover areas within a 10-mile (16-kilometer) radius of fulfillment centers, thus covering a significant portion of the population in urban areas.


    They operate autonomously and drop the items at the target locations thanks to GPS coordinates transmitted to them.

    "It's very green, it's better than driving trucks around," said Bezos.

    Amazon said the octocopters would be "ready to enter commercial operations as soon as the necessary regulations are in place," noting that the Federal Aviation Administration was actively working on rules for unmanned aerial vehicles.

    It projected a more optimistic timeline than Bezos himself for the project to be activated, saying the FAA's rules could be in place as early as 2015 and that Amazon Prime Air would be ready at that time.

    Bezos hinted that part of the motivation behind the mini-drones was to make sure Amazon remains on the cutting edge of the retail industry.

    "Companies have short life spans... And Amazon will be disrupted one day," he said.

    "I would love for it to be after I'm dead."
    Amazon Unveils Futuristic Mini-drone Delivery Plan

    Man, we are going to have a lot of traffic in the air very soon, LOL
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    "It's very green" until the copter blades wipe out migrating flocks of birds or vice-versa. And how about all the fun people will have trying to shoot 'em down, or stealing them as they hover by the door? Crazy idea IMO. LOL

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    There is an obscure Federal law or FAA regulation that makes it illegal for drones to be used for commercial purposes. I read that several real estate photographers have been cited for violation of this law. Bezos would have to get the law overturned or would have to get special licensing.

    I don't see how you can use drones to deliver packages. The drones would have to be fairly large. One or two hardcover books is beyond the lifting capacity for hobbyist drones. The drone in the picture in the article appears to have a spread of 4 to 6 feet and looks pretty dangerous to me. The first time it injures someone or damages a home the program will be over. This what happens when you have too much money and don't know what to do with it. Bezos' personal wealth is estimated at $25 billion.
    "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote." -- Benjamin Franklin


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    Using them for RE photography makes sense. Attempting to dispatch them for deliveries sounds absurd. The liability would be horrendous.
    -- Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and good with ketchup. --

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    I think Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is very good for creating buzz and promote Amazon at the right time, many think that he made an infomercial, which is very possible, others say that it is a billionaire eccentric idea.

    Anyway, I believe that it is a good laugh
    Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

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    I'd assume it really is just to get a little press as Cyber Monday kicks in. Bezos is no fool.
    -- Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and good with ketchup. --

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    Also, people will begin wondering what caliber of ammo would best take down an Amazon drone (I would assume a Marlin .30-30 works best).

    What one can find on the Houston Chronicle site!

    Amazon’s drones about to change the world of shopping - The Texican

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    Well, we're talking about Houston, ya know?
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    Quote Originally Posted by iowadawg View Post
    Also, people will begin wondering what caliber of ammo would best take down an Amazon drone (I would assume a Marlin .30-30 works best).

    What one can find on the Houston Chronicle site!

    Amazon’s drones about to change the world of shopping - The Texican
    You will have more chance to hit a drone with a skeet shotgun than a 30-30
    Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

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