My first drone delivery conversation five or six years ago went something like this.
Jim Edwards: No way, that’s crazy.
Me: By the time they’re ready to actually do it you’ll be used to the idea. Just like autonomous vehicles.
Well, that day is just about here but here’s the thing. It’s not Jeff Bezos’s with Amazon. Despite him being the guy who kicked off the idea when he first floated it several years ago.
Instead, it’s Google. Google has thrown a bunch of things against the wall to see what sticks. For example, they’re partnered with FPL’s parent on wind farms in the Dakotas. Who would’ve guessed that one 15 years ago? Anyway, one of Google’s offshoot ideas is Wing Aviation and they just became the first drone company designated as an “airline” by the FAA. That distinction makes Google’s Wing Aviation as the first, and currently only, drone company that’s ready to be regulated as a business.
As I first pointed out, when Bezos first put the concept on our radar, the FAA had drone delivery systems on its 2020 agenda. If all continues to go according to plan, Google's current path has them on track to be the first company to officially enter the drone delivery space next year. If you haven’t gotten your head around drone delivery yet, you'll soon see them flying above your head and then it won't be just a theory.
Expect the drone delivery race to pick up quickly from here. Traditional delivery companies will likely be scrambling to make headway before they are left behind as the delivery business begins to shift.
Photo by: BORIS HORVAT/AFP/Getty Images