Walmart’s drone-delivery now reaches 4 million US homes
Walmart has partnered with drone operator DroneUp to expand its airborne delivery service to six states in the US this year.
Through the venture, the retailer will fulfil orders from 37 stores servicing 4 million households in parts of Arizona, Arkansas, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Florida.
Customers can order items collectively weighing less than 4.5kgs between 8am and 8pm. The eligible items will be packed and flown to the customer’s driveway or yard by drones. Orders need to be placed on the DroneUp’s website and there is a US$3.99 delivery fee.
“A core value at Walmart is to give back to the communities in which we operate, which is why as we scale our drone infrastructure, we’ll continue to influence the expansion of drone technology and enable other businesses to explore its benefits too,” said a statement on the company’s blog.
David Guggina, senior VP of innovation and automation for Walmart US, said customers use drone delivery to order convenience items such as laundry detergent, batteries and trash bags. One of the top-selling items is a weeknight meal – Hamburger Helper.
The retailer believes DroneUp’s services can be used for a number of aerial solutions including emergency response, real estate and insurance.