Wing said it will be launching its drone delivery service as a new option on the DoorDash app in a limited number of Queensland neighborhoods beginning this week. The initial trial run will be introduced in nine communities around its booming Logan market, then be gradually broadened to other areas the company operates in around Australia.
Wing says its link-up with DoorDash is the first of its kind for both companies, with its offer of rapid drone delivery service through another marketplace’s app representing an unprecedented step for the Alphabet-owned startup. The move could eventually become a significant business multiplier by introducing aerial transport as an option for the diverse range of restaurant and food outlets for whom DoorDash orchestrates deliveries.
Customers will use the DoorDash app as they normally would in placing orders, then be given the choice of selecting Wing’s drone delivery as their transportation option rather than habitual ground vehicles. That promises to get their food to them inside 15 minutes.
Its partnership with DoorDash follows earlier operational innovation to its Australian drone delivery model, including the creation of flight stations in unrented spaces in retail properties like malls, and a dedicated at-store logistics center for the supermarket chain Coles.
The addition of a large number of DoorDash food businesses to its existing drone delivery clients means Wing can carry an increasingly large selection of meals, grocery items, pantry staples, snacks, and household essentials to the front yards of Australian consumers.
Despite the development providing a potential boost to Wing’s aerial activities, the general manager of DoorDash’s Australian unit, Rebecca Burrows, says her company’s main objective is to create non-polluting, sustainable options for its deliveries of orders, not necessarily increase the volume of those with the help of drones.
“Drone delivery can provide an excellent complement to our ground delivery services,” Burrows said. “Delivery drones create a quick, efficient delivery option for smaller orders weighing just over a kilo, and free up ground delivery services for larger deliveries that provide better compensation to drivers… Whether it’s Vegemite and butter, iced coffee, corn chips and salsa, baby food and even band-aids, this will make accessing those last-minute necessities a whole lot easier.”
Wing Australia’s general manager Simon Rossi expects the move away from operating business exclusively through the company’s own app will be replicated over time to help fuel the demand for and operation of drone deliveries.
“While Wing has traditionally provided delivery services directly to residential and business customers, to further accelerate our technology development, we’ll be increasingly working with marketplaces and logistics partners to expand their delivery options, making fast drone delivery affordable and sustainable for them, and their customers,” Rossi said.