The Amazon Scout delivery robot introduced last year is rolling out into new markets, Amazon has announced. After successful tests in California and Washington state, the company will deploy its Scout rover in certain southern markets, including Atlanta. Amazon Scout will make deliveries from Monday to Friday, using sensors and other advanced tech to navigate itself.
The idea of using autonomous robots to deliver small items isn’t new — we’ve seen examples of these types of machines on college campuses and in select cities where they roll around with beverages, snacks, and other small, inexpensive products. In the case of Amazon Scout, the rover is entirely electric, moves about as fast as the average person’s walking speed, and is able to detect and avoid objects.
Amazon is deploying the rover in Franklin, Tennesee, and Atlanta, Georgia, where the Scout will be accompanied — initially, at least — by an Amazon Scout Ambassador. The company notes that these two markets have a much different climate than the places in California and Washington where they have already been tested, giving the team behind the product a chance to see how the machines handle hotter, more humid weather.
Amazon customers in these cities will place their orders like usual, but in cases where it is applicable, the products will be delivered with the robot rather than by a traditional human carrier. This delivery option won’t cost anything extra compared to ordinary delivery options, according to the company, which says that everything from same-day to two-day Prime shipments will be possible with Scout.
The expansion of this test is described as part of Amazon’s overall goal of introducing new emission-free delivery options, something that itself is part of the company’s net-zero carbon goal. Assuming everything goes as planned, Amazon wants to reach a state of net-zero carbon across its operations by 2040.