Should Amazon be broken up? 'No,' says Amazon executive

Ann Santiago
June 7, 2019

Likewise, Amazon said it plans to use its "world-class fulfillment and delivery network" to scale up Prime Air and make deliveries using the drone within months. The new model is described as featuring a "hybrid design" with improved stability and efficiency, as well as better safety than the previous version.

The new Prime Air drone is fully electric and can fly up to 15 miles within 30 minutes.

Amazon Prime Air will start delivering packages via drones "within months", according to a statement from Amazon Worldwide Consumer CEO Jeff Wilke.

"We know customers will only feel comfortable receiving drone deliveries if they know the system is incredibly safe", he said.

Amazon's drone service has been in the works for years, and in 2013 Amazon founder Jeff Bezos said drones would be flying to customers' homes within five years - but that deadline passed due to regulatory hurdles.

The company has said it views automation as a way to help workers.

Amazon said earlier this year it would speed up its free delivery for its Prime subscribers, now 2 days for most items, to a single day, with North American customers the first to benefit.

The Federal Aviation Administration told PCMag it's so far only given Amazon a special certificate to operate the drones for research and development purposes in certain authorized flight areas.

While Amazon is already piloting delivery drones in the United Kingdom and has approval to test drone deliveries in the U.S. its timeline for Prime air drone sounds ambitious.

The Federal Aviation Administration, which regulates commercial use of drones in the USA, did not immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday. This can allow the drone to recognize other aircraft, a chimney tower, and of course people and pets as the machine lands to make a delivery.

The certificate is for one year and can be renewed, the FAA said. The press release indicates that the drone will use "explainable stereo vision in parallel with sophisticated AI algorithms" to detect any humans or animals before it approaches the ground.

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