Amazon will be using self-driving robots to deliver packages in the near future but testing has already begun in Seattle. It was developed at Amazon's R&D lab and is designed to avoid pedestrians, pets or anything else in its path. In theory, it works similar to the suitcase that follows you around. It sort of resembles a small Ice Box which will house packages inside it for Amazon customers.
Amazon says “the devices will autonomously follow their delivery route but will initially be accompanied by an Amazon employee. We developed Amazon Scout at our research and development lab in Seattle, ensuring the devices can safely and efficiently navigate around pets, pedestrians and anything else in their path."
The robot is called “Amazon Scout” and can roll on sidewalks that can navigate around obstacles. At the moment, Amazon will use six robots to make deliveries this week; although it will be accompanied by an Amazon employee. The robot will have a few hurdles to face such as extreme weather conditions, steep inclines, curbs and other engineering challenges, which is why it's not certain when we can see it being used in the mainstream places. Previously, Amazon was testing out drones for delivering packages; however, we have not seen that idea come to fruition as of yet.
Amazon already uses robots to move inventory in their warehouses. However, considering those robots have a pre-defined path, using robots in the real world can be risky. Having said that, Amazon is not the only company tapping into robot delivery as other startups are also looking into this technology. Amazon Scout, on the other hand, cannot replace trucks that carry loads of packages. However, it can be used at the last phase of delivery.
If you want to know how the delivery robot will work, you can watch the video below: