Walmart set to test robot-driven delivery vans

by Apparel Resources News-Desk

20-June-2019  |  2 mins read

Walmart shopping centre
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Efficient and cost-effective robot-driven cars are on the way! Walmart, which is experiencing a boom in online sales, is considering on using robot cars to transport goods in between warehouses in order to increase efficiency and make it more cost effective.

The retail magnate, which has partnered with Gatik, a self-driving vehicle start-up, will test out its first self-driving vehicle along a two-mile route in Bentonville, Arkansas between two stores.

Self-driving cars have become a huge hype in the market with many businesses increasingly investing in start-ups offering such services. The retail market has a lot to gain from this technology. Analysts claim that the estimated market for transporting goods on a fixed route from warehouse to warehouse using driverless vehicles could be US $ 1 trillion.

“We are working with city and state officials to obtain the approval we need to operate and plan to start the pilot programme this summer with the aim to learn about the logistics of adding AVs into our ecosystem, operation and process changes, and more opportunities to incorporate this emerging technology,” Walmart spokeswoman Molly Blakeman said.

With the rise of online shopping, the robots will solve the problem of shortage of truck drivers which has led to 60,000 unfilled long-haul positions, according to data Bloomberg cited from the American Trucking Association.

Meanwhile, driverless delivery is already operational as Swedish start-up Einride recently began low-speed robot-deliveries on public roads in the country.

Einride’s T-Pod trucks are 60 per cent cheaper to build because they lack a passenger compartment. The T-Pods operate in self-driving mode 95 per cent of the time, according to CEO and Founder Robert Falck. A T-Pod can operate around the clock and cut shipping costs in half.

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