|12 April 2017|
Logistics giant Hermes is trialling self-driving delivery robots in London.
It is doing so through a partnering with Starship Technologies. The pair have already worked together to test Starship’s six wheeled machines – which can hit a top speed of 4mph – in Germany.
Now Hermes will try out the robots in the London borough of Southwark, to see how they get on collecting parcels in the area. The delivery company says it will use the trial to gauge how they can be incorporated to provide better on-demand solutions.
To kick things off, a 30-minute time slot will be offered for collection – for products customers wish to send back to retailers, or for things customers or small businesses want to despatch with myHermes.
Carole Woodhead, CEO of Hermes, said: “Starship Technologies is a highly innovative and pioneering firm. We are extremely pleased to utilise their expertise to explore exciting new ways that will further strengthen our portfolio of services and offer greater choice and convenience for customers. We can already see first-hand the success they’ve had with food deliveries in London, and we are excited to team up with them in a bid to revolutionise the home delivery marketplace.”
The robots can be accessed through a link on a smartphone app and the secure compartments on them can accommodate loads weighing up 10KG. The ultimate goal is for the robots to be 99% autonomous with one person monitoring several robots via the internet and GPS, able to take back control if necessary.