Ride-hailing behemoth Uber has partnered with the US-based robotics company, Cartken, which will provide sidewalk robots to its subsidiary, Uber Eats, to deliver food.
As per The Verge, the delivery-commute company will be getting six-wheeled delivery robots, developed by a team of former Google engineers, mostly known for deploying their vehicles on college campuses.
Uber claims that its partnership with Cartken represents the robotics company’s “first formal partnership with a global on-demand delivery app beyond college campuses”.
According to the report, Cartken’s robots are electric, with a trunk that can hold nearly two dozen pounds of cargo, and embedded cameras that can detect obstacles and direct them to their destination.
It also mentioned that the robots have a delivery radius of several miles, but they only travel slightly faster than walking and they cannot climb stairs so they may not be as appealing to people living in multi-storeyed houses.
In October, Uber and Motional, a global driverless technology leader, announced a 10-year agreement to offer fully driverless rides using Motional’s new all-electric IONIQ 5-based robotaxis.
With this, Uber has now returned to the game of robotaxis after it sold its struggling autonomous vehicle business to the US-based Aurora Innovations in 2020.
The companies said they will strategically deploy the service in cities across the US, with the first trips expected to start later this year.