Alphabet's drone division has launched its first public delivery service

Daniel Fowler
April 12, 2019

The project is being led by Google's parent company Alphabet, which managed to fend off competition from Amazon to win over Australian regulators.

Today, we are excited to be launching our first air delivery service in North Canberra.

Wing partnered with local businesses to deliver small household items via drone to eligible homes in Canberra, located southwest of Sydney. The aviation authority says Wing must use this quieter drone for its commercial service.

Wing was spun out of Alphabet's X research division in July previous year to become an independent company within Alphabet and is part of the Other Bets division.

Approval has been granted with "strict conditions", including daylight-only operating hours; the drones are banned from crossing major roads, and must maintain a minimum distance from people on the ground. We are one step closer to drone deliveries for everything!

A Project Wing drone set to make a delivery.

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Wing estimated that its drone delivery service could add as much as $28.5 million to Australia's annual revenue at its full capacity, The Guardian reported. According to another resident, around 80% of the people living in the suburb were opposed to the presence of the drones.

And Wing's drones also have to obey a curfew, as they are only allowed to fly between 7am and 8pm on Monday to Friday.

"We're excited to connect with more local businesses in the Gungahlin area about how we can help them reach more customers faster, safer and more sustainably", Bouldin-Johnson said.

The new delivery service will start to be operational in a few weeks and will start operating in a few neighbourhoods in Canberra first before expanding to the entire city.

Currently, the internet giant is only operating its drone delivery service in parts of the USA with trials set to start in the United Kingdom.

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