Kroger Starts Grocery Deliveries In Driverless Vehicles

Self-driving vehicles are hitting some roads but not all of them are intended to carry people.

Kroger, America’s largest supermarket retailer with stores in 35 states, has started its driverless vehicle grocery delivery trial in Arizona.

In June, Kroger announced its partnership with Nuro to launch on-road, fully autonomous vehicles to deliver groceries and now the pilot has started.

The trial is starting with a single location, Fry’s Food Store in Scottsdale, where customer can now place delivery orders. Shopping can be done online or through the store’s mobile app and orders are based on slot availability.

For a flat fee of $5.95, groceries can be scheduled for delivery the same day or next day by Nuro’s fleet of self-driving vehicles. Customers receive a text message when the groceries are on the way and can track the vehicle live on a map.

When in operation, the Nuro vehicles have a remote operator monitoring, with the capability of taking over in the event of a “potential unmanaged risk,” according to Nuro.

At the start of the program this week, a fleet of self-driving Priuses is being used and the robotic R1 are slated to be added in the fall.

“Our goal is to save people time, while operating safely and learning how we can further improve the experience,” stated Nuro co-founder Dave Ferguson.

This is not the only concept for delivering things rather than people in autonomous vehicles. Ford is working on self-driving vehicles for Domino’s Pizza deliveries, Toyota introduced a concept vehicle that could deliver food and Boeing is working on creating pilotless aircraft.

6 comments about "Kroger Starts Grocery Deliveries In Driverless Vehicles".
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  1. Gabe Greenberg from Gabbcon, August 17, 2018 at 5:49 p.m.

    How does the grocery delivery get to the house and how do you be sure you plck out the right groceries from the delivery vehicle? Interesting idea but if you are competing with Amazon and other delivery services the other more of a complete service, it seems that they will be hard pressed to find success at scale. 

  2. R MARK REASBECK from www.USAonly.US , August 17, 2018 at 10:05 p.m.

    So i spend the equivalent of 2 gallons of gas to get it delivered. Dumb idea, it takes the impulse sale out of the equation which contributes to the store's bottom line.  Could never go for this, I would miss squeezing the cantalopes.

  3. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, August 20, 2018 at 12:49 p.m.

    Guys, rumor has it that the tech nerds are developing an automated grocery store that comes right to your home in a large driverless vehicle and allows you to pick out your own mellons. It's sort of like that old Good Humor truck that used to drive around most neighborhoods when we were all much younger, dispensing popsicles and the like--except there is no driver. The machine merely honks its horn---or sends you a message on your smart TV, phone, tablet, etc. and you have five minutes to get out there and choose what you want before it moves on to its next call. Later, they send you a bill for what you took. Sounds like a great idea for other services---a driverless dentist's vehicle that comes to your home, gives you an X-Ray and decides whether to pull your tooth or fill a cavity. Or, a driverless tailor's wagon that cmes to your home, gives you a fitting and makes a suit---or a pair of shorts--- to your specs ---while you wait. What wonderful times these are. Sigh!

  4. Chuck Martin from Chuck Martin replied, August 20, 2018 at 12:59 p.m.

    Some similar scenarios to those you mentioned ara actually in the works, for real, Ed.

  5. Chuck Martin from Chuck Martin replied, August 20, 2018 at 12:59 p.m.

    Right, Gabe, scale is the real issue here.

  6. R MARK REASBECK from www.USAonly.US , August 21, 2018 at 8:58 p.m.

    We still have tailors??
    great idea till the truck gets grocery-jacked

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