last mile

2017 May 16

are robots the answer to the last mile delivery problem?

The last mile of any home delivery is frought with difficulty and is very expensive and hugely wasteful.  Consumers demand convenience but the very nature of home delivery is inefficient.

Many big businesses are absorbed with this challenge including delivery giants UPS and eComm leader Amazon.   As a key global player, Amazon recognizes the huge opportunities that improving last mile delivery would present and they are currently testing drone delivery in the UK with their first successful delivery completed this March. 

Looking at an alternative automated delivery option, London based start-up Starship Technologies has developed a cute 6 wheeled delivery bot that can carry up to 18kg of goods working within a 3-mile radius and traveling at walking speed. The company already has partnerships in the United States with DoorDash and Postmates as well as deals in the UK, Germany, Switzerland and Estonia with Just Eat, Hermes Parcel Delivery, Media Markt, Swiss Post and Wolt.

“Starship is reinventing the last mile transportation process, allowing convenient and sustainable robotic delivery.”  Ahti Heinla, CEO of Starship Technologies

Starship aims to revolutionize local delivery with a combination of mobile technology, specially designed robots and a local hub system. The company aims to make local delivery faster, smarter and more cost-efficient. 


photo courtesy of starship

>< opinion

Due to the changes in the way people are shopping and changing attitudes towards convenience and on-demand, delivery will only continue to grow in importance as a differentiator. Lack of efficient and cost effective delivery is being seen as one of the main barriers to the growth of e-commerce so maybe robotic technology is the solution?  However things pan out, we are already working closely with our clients to help them meet the demands of this new technology with the best possible packaging solutions.


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