from ars technica
Pizza delivery boys and girls, beware! Pizza giant Domino’s has unveiled an autonomous pizza delivery robot that is being trialled in New Zealand.
On Friday the company unveiled the Domino’s Robotic Unit (DRU), and announced that the bot had already carried out its first successful pizza delivery on March 8. “DRU is an autonomous delivery vehicle and is set to take the world by storm,” the company wrote in a statement on its website.
The vehicle’s development started in 2015 and was pushed towards commercialisation by Domino’s Australia-based skunkworks DLab. According to a promotional video (embedded below), DRU uses software developed by the Australian military contractor Marathon, which manufactures autonomous robots with obstacle-avoidance capabilities.
This feature has been incorporated in DRU, which according to Domino’s can dodge hurdles thanks using on-board sensors. The autonomous four-wheeler is about one metre tall and contains two different compartments to keep beverages cool and pizzas (up to ten per robot) hot, which customers can unlock with an order-specific code. It can carry out a delivery within 20 kilometres from the store before needing a battery charge, and it is designed to move on both footpaths and roads.