Mumbai: Recently, Mumbai’s Francesco Pizzeria delivered an order received by its Ville Parle outlet area by flying it on a four-rotor drone to Worli.
While Francesco’s Pizzeria chief executive Mikhel Rajani have stressed that it was only a test-flight but its results confirm that it can be used routinely in a few years. Rajani says that although, at present, there are certain restrictions on the regulatory fronts such as the drone is not allowed to fly above 400 ft altitude and is barred from flying over security establishments, he is keeping his eyes and ears open for Federal Aviation Authority’s revised [expected] regulations on usage of drones.
It’s certainly not a novel idea; but the first one that has been practically put to use in India: delivering pizza using an unmanned aerial vehicle. Dominos too had previously tested the idea but it seems the idea has been relegated to a mere publicity and promotional activity.
The limitation in both cases has been the carrying capacity. While the four-rotor version drone had a limited payload capacity, Rajani said that it can be increased to up to 8 kg in case of a an eight-rotor drone. DomiCopter too could deliver only two pizzas at a time.
In June 2013, the company used a drone called DomiCopter to test the new delivery method. E-commerce giant, Amazon, too had proposed to launch a delivery-by-drone service. The internet fabled Tacocopter still seems to be by far the most interesting idea. Alas, it remains a fable. But with the recent developments in the Raphael Pirker case, the idea of using drones for delivery seems to be at the arm’s distance.