Last week, Volkswagen released the vision of their future at the Geneva Motor Show by showing off their concept car Sedric, the futuristic driverless autonomous car. This time, it is the turn of Ford Motor (NYSE:F). Ford is planning to come out with an army of autonomous vans and drones that will deliver things to your doorstep.
The Michigan-based automaker used virtual reality to surprise everyone at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona and reveal what it can do.
A woman was missing key ingredients, so she used “Autolivery” to place an order from an app. Her order is loaded into a self-driving van. A drone then flies it and lands at a landing pad on her balcony. Ford says the vans and drones will be electric and driverless, and they can deliver even to high-rise apartments.
Ordering Is Easy, But Delivering Is Difficult
It has now become very easy to order stuff online. But delivering the order can still be very difficult for the businesses. It can be expensive to deliver packages and parcels from the warehouse to the door. This requires a complex logistics, delivery drivers, and trucks that must navigate the “last mile”. This is why many businesses, like Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Domino’s and others are trying to come up with innovative solutions.
Ford has stated already they want to have a fully self-driving fleet of cars on the road within the next four years and launch their own ride-hailing and ride-sharing service like Uber. However, with this, Ford may go even further and carve a niche in a sector where they don’t have a presence yet.
This is important for Ford (NYSE:F) as they are trying to find new ways to make money and survive in a future where people will buy fewer cars.
The Ford Autolivery
Autolivery was developed by James Kuo, Chelsia Lau, and Euishik Bang, who are based out of Shanghai. These three Ford designers have been working for a while now to find a solution to the Last Mile Mobility Challenge of the business. Ford says online ordering will go exponentially and with this, the demand for local deliveries will grow too. So there is an urgent need to develop mobility solutions in urban areas.
Ideas such as Autolivery can reduce air pollution and gridlock and seems like a practical solution for the future.