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Self-Driving Grocery Delivery Service Tested By Kroger In Arizona

Kroger is conducting a test of self-driving tech for food delivery in Scottsdale, Arizona. Autonomous vehicles from Nuro are being used in the test for Fry’s Food Stores.

If you don’t have the time to go to buy food or don’t want to, you may be interested in hearing about this food delivery technology. Kroger is conducting* a test of self-driving tech for food delivery in Scottsdale, Arizona. Autonomous vehicle technology from Nuro are being used in the test for Fry’s Food Stores. The fee is $6 for same or next-day delivery in the 85257 ZIP code. In the earliest stage of the trial, a Toyota Prius will be the delivery vehicle, and it will have a human onboard to make sure the technology doesn’t drive the vehicle erratically or cause an accident.

The idea sounds a like a helpful one for people who can’t or don’t drive for whatever reasons, like for the sick, elderly, or folks who don’t have access to their own vehicles and may not live near public transportation. Another potential use case would be in severe weather, and the Scottsdale/Phoenix area is well-known for its heat. Stay-at-home parents who also work remotely might be interested as well.

Some technology appears to be driven by a need to appear ‘slick’ or futuristic, but autonomous home delivery could offer some advantages — perhaps most obviously with medicine or medical supply delivery to the incapacitated or isolated. It would be really interesting to study the usage data to see who chose to try the service during the pilot, what their experience was, and if they would use it again. Trying new technology can be turned into a competitive advantage for some organizations because innovation is required for survival. In other words, not being open to innovation can sink a company. If a grocery store could provide self-driving deliveries and use electric vehicles to do so, it might also be a differentiator in the marketplace.

Are you interested in such a self-driving delivery service, and would you try it if the pilot was in your area?

*h/t Engadget

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