Autonomous cars have the potential to drastically change the way our society operates, making certain driving-related professions completely obsolete. Kroger, America’s largest supermarket retailer, has teamed up with Nuro to create and test self-driving vehicles. Nuro is a Silicon Valley-based robotics company which is relatively new to building autonomous cars. It was founded by two ex-Google engineers who worked on Google’s self-driving car.
Kroger says it will launch a test pilot with Nuro’s self-driving grocery delivery vehicles. The pilot will begin this fall. Customers will be able to place an order on Kroger’s ClickList ordering system and Nuro’s app, and the service will offer same-day delivery. The groceries will be divided into individual locking sections, so when the autonomous shuttle arrives, customers will be able to access their groceries using their smartphone. Looking at the prototype, the sections will most likely offer refrigeration to keep the food fresh.
Kroger operates 2,800 stores in 35 states, so this type of technology could spread quickly if it works well. Dave Ferguson, Co-Founder of Nuro, said that unmanned delivery will be a game-changer for local commerce, and together with Kroger, they are thrilled to test this new delivery experience to bring grocery customers new levels of convenience and value.