FRISCO, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – Robots are now sharing streets and sidewalks in Frisco with cars and pedestrians, delivering food and groceries to those who are quarantining at home during the coronavirus pandemic.
Businesses like Hurts Donut use a bot fleet to deliver donuts to homes.
“I thought it would be a better and new experience with our customers,” owner Keith Selby said.
He says it’s not just a novelty, it’s safe. “We are trying to be safe for our customers and being touch-less.”
Contact-less delivery is especially popular this time around because of the pandemic.
The robots are a creation of Starship Technology.
Items are put in a basket in the robot with gloved hands.
The app sends a signal to the robot to deliver to the house within the two-mile radius. Its sensors and cameras help navigate it through the streets and sidewalks.
“It has a bubble of awareness around it,” said Robert Beuhler, Director of Sales at Starship.
Julie Geiger who has used the service twice says it’s been quite entertaining receiving deliveries from a robot
“Its not only novelty but it is contact-less delivery, she said. “We never see another human being.”
“Who doesn’t like getting donuts from a robot,” son Jake Geiger joked.
Universities have used delivery bots for food. Starship services many universities including the University of Texas at Dallas.
But when the students went home, the company sped up its operations and moved the services to Frisco.
“In Texas there a law that allows personally delivery devices to drive around the streets but we are working with Frisco and be good partners.” Beuhler said.
Each delivery costs around $1.99
Several local businesses including Hareli Fresh Market, Kpop Burger & Crab King, Chicken Express, Gully Point and Fuzzy’s Taco are using robots to deliver food and groceries.
“Business are excited about opportunity to offer fully contact-less deliveries,” said Beuhler.