Rapid technological advancements in the last 10 years have taught us that what the norms are today, may not be the norms tomorrow.
For as long as automobiles have been around, there have been people behind the wheel. What would you think if you glance over to the car or truck next to you and notice that it is driving all by itself? I personally thought I would have to wait a long time before seeing something like that, but now it is becoming a reality for the near future.
Last February 9, Google filed a patent for its new package delivery platform – the autonomous self-driving vehicles. These vehicles are designed to receive destination information with a package securing subsystem, allowing self-driving cars to drive and deliver packages to desired location. This concept of delivering packages is not new to Amazon. The e-commerce giant has also been exploring ways to deliver packages using drones.
On Google’s patent abstract, it envisions its package delivery platform as “An autonomous road vehicle is operative to receive destination information, and to drive a destination based on the destination information. A package securing subsystem is attached to the autonomous road vehicle and comprises at least one securable compartment. Each securable compartment is operative to secure at least one package therein. Each securable compartment is associated with compartment access information. An access sub-system comprising at least one access information interface. The access subsystem is operative, upon receipt through the access information interface of compartment access information, to permit access to the compartment associated with the received compartment access information.” [Source: rcrwireless(dot)com]
The idea is that a self-driving truck will pull over outside your house at the set time of the delivery and will identify the compartment containing your package. Each compartment requires an access code for the package to be released. Google’s autonomous vehicles are currently being tested in some states including California, Texas, and Washington.
Google, Uber, Lyft, Tesla and Apple have taken extraordinary steps in the last several years to make this a viable alternative for people and companies.
This mass initiative is already active in the transportation and logistics industry; autonomous ocean freighters and trucks along with drones dropping packages at our front doors, are just some of the advancements that will be here in the next 10-15 years.
It will be exciting to see how this all unfolds.