Domino’s to Deliver Pizzas Using Autonomous Vehicles in Houston Later This Year
In the future, it would appear that a lot more stuff will be delivered without the help of humans. We’ve seen self-driving trucks transporting beer. Just last week, Uber Eats announced plans to use drones to speed up its delivery service. And a couple months ago, Kroger partnered with a company called Nuro to trial autonomous delivery of grocery at a couple of its stores in Houston. Today, Nuro added another big partnership in the Houston area: The robotics brand’s unmanned vehicles will be used to deliver pizzas for none other than Domino’s.
The pizza giant has announced a pilot program that will see the two companies working together “later this year” to deliver select online orders from participating locations via one of Nuro’s R2s — a four-wheel, street-approved, autonomous vehicle that is closer in size to a golf cart than a car. If a customer’s order is eligible, they will have to opt in to get their food sent via R2, but once they do, you can track their pizza’s journey via the Domino’s app, and then unlock their grub with a unique PIN code once the vehicle arrives.
“We are always looking for new ways to innovate and evolve the delivery experience for our customers,” Kevin Vasconi, Domino’s executive vice president and chief information officer, said in the announcement. “Nuro’s vehicles are specially designed to optimize the food delivery experience, which makes them a valuable partner in our autonomous vehicle journey. The opportunity to bring our customers the choice of an unmanned delivery experience, and our operators an additional delivery solution during a busy store rush, is an important part of our autonomous vehicle testing.”
Nuro, which has been making deliveries in the Houston area since March, hopes this could be the beginning of a much larger partnership between the two brands and could potentially help bring them to other markets. “We are excited to expand our autonomous delivery service in Houston with Domino’s delivery,” Cosimo Leipold, Nuro’s head of partner relations, said. “Domino’s delivers millions of pizzas around the world every day, and the company shares our passion for focusing on the customer experience. We see incredible opportunity in offering Nuro’s world-class autonomous technology to Domino’s customers, accelerating our shared mission to transform local commerce.”