Domino’s Australia and Domino’s New Zealand have both released teaser videos featuring a sleek-looking new delivery robot – the Domino’s Robotic Unit (DRU). They designed the robot along with the help of Australian startup Marathon Robotics using GPS tracking and sensors to navigate around to customers' houses.
The four-wheeled robot has multiple compartments that keeps up to 10 pizzas toastie warm, whilst a refrigerating section keeps drinks and desserts cool. The Guardian reports that customers can open the compartments by entering a security code into their smartphone when the robot arrives at their door.
There’s no word yet on when exactly Domino's will be making the DRU a reality, though. In a statement they announced: “While he won’t be taking to the streets tomorrow, DRU is a big step forward in the work Domino’s is doing in the future commercialisation of this technology.”
“He is cheeky and endearing and we are confident that one day soon he will be joining the Domino’s family and delivering piping hot pizzas to your door,” they added.
DRU still appears to be in a prototype stage, and it’s not clear how it would fare against stairs, curbs, or traffic lights. As The Australian also points out, its AU$30,000 (U.S. $22,800) price tag will also make it easy pickings for “robot-nappers.” Domino's also conceded that the implementation of autonomous drones is still bound by many legal hurdles and regulations. However, it says it is working with Queensland Department of Transport and Main Roads to help get the drones on the road.
This isn’t the first company toying with robot delivery systems. Last year, online-giants Amazon announced they would be deploying a fleet of unmanned aerial drones to deliver its goods.