Last Mile Delivery Latest Tech Trends

You may be wondering why there’s that pesky shipping and handling fee attached to your online orders. Well as your delivery gets closer to you, its path becomes more specific. As a result, the “last-mile” to you, the customer, especially in rural areas, becomes increasingly expensive.

While last-mile delivery is the most important part to individual customers, it’s also the most expensive part of the supply chain to distributions. Therefore, large distributors like Amazon are looking for ways to improve last-mile delivery methods. Below, we’ll discuss the latest, most disruptive last-mile delivery methods on the market today.

Amazon takes a lead by providing a variety of delivery services. Amazon Locker is a self-service delivery system that trades convenience for speed and affordability. Prime members can send orders to Amazon Locker locations which sometimes offer free, one-day delivery. On the downside, customers must pick up their packages themselves. If you live in a city, Amazon Locker is more convenient because there’s likely a store near you.

Additionally, Amazon is exploring delivery via drones to solve last-mile delivery in rural locations and make deliveries faster. This means you could get a package within 30 minutes, solving the predicament of finding a last-minute birthday or Christmas gift. Their new service, Prime Air, is being tested in Cambridge, England in hopes to expand to the rest of their members soon. Amazon’s most recent venture includes recruiting entrepreneurs to manage a fleet of Prime vans for local deliveries, ensuring their delivery reliability.

Kroger is exploring autonomous last-mile delivery. It has partnered with Ocado, Britain’s leading grocery delivery service, and Nuro, a driverless delivery company to fulfill same-day deliveries.

uShip uses crowdsourcing to provide cheap, fast delivery of oversized shipments, an overlooked sector of logistics. uShip allows transporters to bid on a customer’s business. The bid-based business model ensures that you are getting the lowest price available. uShip has successfully reduced delivery costs and transit times by up to 50% and 65% respectively.

Alibaba, based in China, is the first company to offer autonomous delivery for commercial use. Their robot, G Plus, will deliver food from restaurants or groceries. Customers can make their order from an app on their phone and then track the G Plus unit throughout the delivery. The app will also be used to open the unit ensuring orders won’t be stolen. Alibaba’s target market environment for G Plus are campuses and residential areas. If American competitors can offer autonomous delivery, your Uber Eats driver may be replaced by a robot.

We believe that the costly issue of last-mile delivery will soon be solved by using the benefits of autonomous delivery systems and are exited to continue covering this space with the latest research.

Johnny Kobori