What will take for drone delivery to finally become cost competitive?
For hundreds and thousands of people in the United States, 2022 was the year commercial drone delivery finally became a reality. Walmart expanded its drone delivery operations to 36 hubs spread across Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, North Carolina, Texas, Utah, and Virginia. Alphabet’s Wing began delivering to Texas’ Dallas-Fort Worth area. Heck, even Amazon‘s drone delivery program finally took off in a couple of cities in California and Texas before the year came to a close.
A lot more activity is expected in 2023, with Mitsubishi Electric going as far as to put together a drone-based logistics platform that will bring shippers, drone manufacturers, drone operators, and other service providers under one roof.
But as enticing as the promise of ultrafast drone delivery is, in the long run, this last-mile logistics model will be able to replace other means of transportation only when it is truly cost-effective – which begs the question…
How much does…