Amazon Prime Air
Amazon Prime Air is a conceptual drone-based delivery system currently in development by Amazon.
On December 1, 2013, Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos appeared on 60 Minutes to reveal ‘’Amazon Prime Air,’’ a futuristic delivery system for his company's products. In the interview he revealed that his company has been developing multirotor Miniature Unmanned Air Vehicle (Miniature UAV) technology intended to utilize GPS to autonomously fly individual packages to customers’ doorsteps within 30 minutes of ordering. To qualify for 30 minute delivery, the order must be less than five pounds, which, according to Bezos, includes 86% of the packages Amazon currently sells. The order must also be small enough to fit in the cargo box that the craft will carry, and the delivery location must be within a ten mile radius of a participating Amazon order fulfillment center.
Presently, the biggest hurdle facing Amazon Prime Air is that commercial use of UAV technology is not yet legal in the United States. In the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012, congress issued the Federal Aviation Administration a deadline of September 30, 2015 to accomplish a “safe integration of civil unmanned aircraft systems into the national airspace system.” Amazon’s own website states, “We hope the FAA's rules will be in place as early as sometime in 2015. We will be ready at that time.”
Public concerns regarding this technology include public safety, privacy, and package security issues. The webpage for Amazon Prime Air states, “Safety will be our top priority, and our vehicles will be built with multiple redundancies and designed to commercial aviation standards.”
- "Amazon Unveils Futuristic Plan: Delivery by Drone". CBS News. 1 December 2013. Retrieved 6 May 2014.
- Orsini, Lauren (2 December 2013). "To Deliver With Prime Air Drones, Amazon Has to Solve These 3 Problems". www.readwrite.com. Retrieved 6 May 2014.
- "FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012". www.FAA.gov. 14 February 2012. Retrieved 6 May 2014.
- "Amazon Prime Air". www.amazon.com. Retrieved 6 May 2014.