Since Amazon’s surprise in late 2013 with their delivery drone, last-mile delivery for parcels have been a hot topic, especially in the last 12 months. The cost of those deliveries is estimated at $75 billion, and 40% of that is in China, Germany, and the United States. This market is also growing, at a yearly rate between 7 to 10% in mature markets, and up to 300% in developing markets like India. With these numbers in mind, no wonder that various organizations, established companies, and start-ups, see a great potential in last-mile delivery.
Consumer preferences are pushing for new offerings in last mile delivery. According to a survey conducted by McKinsey&Company, almost 25% of respondents are ready to pay premiums for same-day of even shorter delivery. The remaining respondents prefer the cheapest option.
With this in mind, below is a non-exhaustive timeline of various last-mile delivery initiatives that show the impact of drones with last mile delivery.
And now, what can we expect within the next 10 years? According to the McKinsey&Company study, autonomous vehicles will deliver 80% of parcels by 2025. Depending of the inhabitants’ density, aerial drones, wheeled drones, or autonomous vehicles with lockers will establish themselves as the dominant delivery modes. These will replace or improve current last mile delivery methods such as lockers, bike couriers and human driving delivery trucks.