Uber Eats and Nuro are making autonomous food deliveries in Texas and California

More Uber Eats customers would receive their orders from vehicles with no delivery staff in sight. That’s because Uber has signed a 10-year partnership with Nuro to use its autonomous electric vehicles to deliver grocery orders across the US. They will launch in Houston, Texas and Mountain View, California this fall before eventually expanding service to the greater Bay Area.

Corresponding TechCrunch, customers have no choice and do not even know if their order will be delivered by a Nuro-Bot when making a purchase. It also means they will be charged the same shipping cost regardless of the shipping method. They’ll also get a refund for their tip if they give one through the app and a Nuro vehicle shows up instead of a human worker. However, you have to go outside to get your order yourself and that could be quite a hassle when it’s raining.

Based on the video the companies released to show what a Nuro delivery would look like, customers would have to enter a code to open the vehicle door and receive their order. Nuro introduced its third-generation delivery vehicle earlier this year, equipped with an external airbag to protect pedestrians. As it has not yet officially launched its new vehicle model, it will initially use its second generation cars called R2 for the partnership. Designed to be fully driverless, the R2 is equipped with 360-degree and thermal imaging cameras, lidar and radar to effectively navigate roads independently.

Nuro’s vehicles have been delivering to other companies like Walmart in Houston since 2019. In California, he was granted the state’s first autonomous vehicle deployment permit in 2020, giving him the authority to operate a commercial autonomous vehicle service. As TechCrunch notes that Nuro would receive a fee for every Uber Eats delivery in the state.

Nuro isn’t the only autonomous delivery company that Uber Eats has struck a deal with. The grocery delivery service began a pilot with Motional for orders in Santa Monica, California, in May, though the deliveries, which will be performed by an autonomous vehicle, will still have a safety driver behind the wheel. Uber Eats also launched a pilot service with street delivery company Serve Robotics for short-distance delivery in West Hollywood that same month.

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https://www.engadget.com/uber-eats-nuro-autonomous-food-deliveries-texas-california-045758421.html?src=rss Uber Eats and Nuro are making autonomous food deliveries in Texas and California

Russell Falcon

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