02
Dec
amazon air

We almost certainly won't have hoverboards or flying DeLoreans in 2015, but Amazon is aiming to give us the next best thing: crazy-fast package delivery via flying drones. Yes, people, welcome to the future. Though there are obvious hurdles to overcome before these autonomous delivery robots become a reality, Amazon hopes that one day, "Prime Air vehicles will be as normal as seeing mail trucks on the road today."

Eccentric Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced the Prime Air plans on the December 1st episode of 60 Minutes. Amazon is planning on having a fleet of "octocopters" at distribution centers with delivery to nearby addresses in half an hour or less, determined and delivered by GPS coordinates. It's a dramatic and ambitious project to say the least.

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Naturally there are some limitations. Current drones have a range of ten miles and a carry limit of five pounds (86% of Amazon's deliveries), and it looks like there are dimensional limits as well. But the biggest hurdle will be the Federal Aviation Administration, which regulates all civil and commercial air transportation in the US. According to Bezos, the safety and regulation backbone necessary to enable Amazon to legally operate a fleet of drones might be in place as early as 2015, though 4-5 years is more likely. "This is years of additional work," says Bezos.

Check out the full 60 Minutes segment with Charlie Rose at the source link below - it's well worth the time.

Source: 60 Minutes, Amazon Prime Air

Jeremiah Rice
Jeremiah is a US-based blogger who bought a Nexus One the day it came out and never looked back. In his spare time he watches Star Trek, cooks eggs, and completely fails to write novels.
  • Mr E

    This is awesome!

  • http://randomphantasmagoria.com/ Shawn

    Wow, this is all kinds of awesome.

    • teolinux

      kill it with fire!!!
      I'm frigging scared of approaching one of those chopping monsters to sign my delivery card!!!! If we don't stop them now, HAL9000 will be the next step

  • Ben

    It's neat, but I also find this creepy.

    • MikeCiggy

      It's got a big smile on it. What harm can it do?

      • teolinux

        kiddo running out of the house "Hey look mum, my Xmas gifts are..." *CHOPPED*

  • Mayoo

    Thunderbird 2, ready for takeoff

  • Cesar

    Welcome to the future.

  • Todd Fongemie

    Yah the sheer convenients on this idea is amazing.... But I do find the whole idea worrisome, do we really wanna see drones flying around in our skies? The reality of machines taking over our lives is clearly approaching alot faster than I thought it would have.

  • LE Sacks

    I know people who'd live that service..

    ... mostly stoners...

  • who?

    good luck implementing it without having idiots shooting them down all the time..

    • JonJJon

      News just in (in 2018); Amazon theft rate has increased 10,000%. In other news hundreds of drones are found lying in the streets due to unknown holes causing malfunction.

    • jesuguru

      They'd prob have some kind of photospheric camera that records video into a black box and/or uploads real-time to the cloud, so they could get a clear view of the shooter wearing a ski mask.

      • http://seapip.com/ Thomas Gladdines

        Dat sarcasm :D

    • Stylus_XL

      That's the first thing I thought of - package poaching. Cool idea but not practical in a number of ways.

    • John Daniel

      Shooting them down would be good stress relief for all their poor warehouse staff.

    • teolinux

      They could put defensive missiles on them.

    • http://GPlus.to/Abhisshack Abhisshack

      Forget Amazon's robotic drones - it's all about Waterstone's adorable team of O.W.L.S

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=agpB5FVMkOg

  • cheapskate88

    "Look out! Falling Amazon package!"

  • Dan

    Trumark Slingshot - $10 on Amazon
    1/2" Hex Nuts - $0.25 each on Amazon
    Kevlar speargun rope - $0.38/foot on Amazon

    Shooting down drones with a slingshot bola all summer long - Priceless

    • Dominic Powell

      This is what I think the biggest obstacle is to this service...

    • Mayoo

      Oh the irony. Shooting it down with items delivered by it.

  • http://cyanlabs.co.uk/ Cyanlabs
    • teolinux

      I imagine the swarm of drones coming out of the store at the sound of "The Ride of the Valkyries"
      *EPIC delivery*

  • Jason

    Am I the only one who sees a giant, flying barbecue grill?

    • http://www.thepixelpuse.com/ Aj Meadows

      Mmmmmm.... Flying barbecue sounds yummy.

    • Mayoo

      Amazon to deliver BBQ steaks within 10 min ... CONFIRMED!

  • Jens Lange

    Stop reporting about that - it's just free amazon advertisment. There are so many reasons why this won't work and Amazon knows this. It's vaporware and the media eats it. Chapeau - amazon pr department!

  • MJ

    Will Amazon send another drone to bomb your house when wife and kids are home if you default on a payment or something?

    • teolinux

      They send a Terminator T-800

  • teolinux

    I foresee a carnage of kids and pets, chopped by those unprotected rotor blades...

  • bondx99

    Drone hunting season begins soon..!!

  • shamwow

    We should put people in them. Let's call them a plane!

  • Bradikadis

    What's this to do with Android?

  • http://www.stevenmattera.com Steven Mattera

    Awesome idea, but they needs better packaging. Plastic containers don't decompose as fast and will end up sitting in landfills for years upon years. Why not continue using cardboard, but have it stored in a shoot under the quadrocopter? Also probably need to put some protection on those propeller blades.