After two years of research and development in a non-descript red brick building on Google’s Mountain View corporate campus, the tech giant has unveiled its top secret drone delivery program known as Project Wing.
Google revealed the program to the world yesterday in an extensive profile within The Atlantic, which covers the entire story from concept to fruition with a test flight in Australia where a drone flies across a field on a cattle ranch and lowers a package of dog treats down to a farmer and his pets.
Amazing article about Google’s drone-delivery program: http://t.co/97wWIXHTav
— Ramit Sethi (@ramit) August 29, 2014
The man that Google Co-founder, Sergey Brin, tasked to head the Project Wing drone delivery program is MIT roboticist Nick Roy, who along with other Googlers on the project, walk The Atlantic Deputy Editor Alexis Madrigal through the entire history of the program.
While Google hasn’t unveiled, or hasn’t yet decided, whether it intends to launch its own drone delivery service or whether it is just building out the infrastructure for other companies to leverage and take flight, it’s flying forward with development of the platform as it views the underlying technology as key to making autonomous drone delivery a success.
That certainly makes sense as an out of control drone crashing into people, power lines, birds, and other aircraft as well as dropping packages like bombs over the urban landscape wouldn’t go over well with the FAA, let alone any government agency regulating the air or person on the ground.
Regardless, the future is here and drone delivery will happen in whatever form the market determines to be the safest, most efficient, and most profitable. Businesses and customers will benefit from this new technology the most as it’s anticipated to cut delivery time down to a minute.
“When the Pony Express came along, it really reshaped society to be able to move things around fairly reliably at that speed, which was measured in many days. The U.S. Postal Service—growing partly out of the Pony Express and having it be even more reliable and starting to shorten the time—really did change society again.
“FedEx overnight delivery has absolutely changed the world again. We’re starting to see same-day service actually change the world,” he continued. “Why would we think that the next 10x—being able to get something in just a minute or two—wouldn’t change the world?”