Robots are taking over the food industry. If you’re alarmed, fret not; this is simply the next necessary step in evolution. They’re delivering our groceries. They’re running our grocery stores. They trawl the streets with our meals. In some places, they also prepare those meals. Resistance is futile. This is the new order.
For Dominos, which has spent the last few years breaking ground in the field of pizza gimmickry, a dive into the world of modern robotics was much more of a “when” than an “if.” Last year, initial tests saw a small fleet of autonomous vehicles deployed in Miami (albeit driven by humans at the time, for legal/safety reasons), to test whether customers would be receptive to the approach.
Now, CNBC reports that the international pizza chain will test another self-piloting vehicle in Houston later this year. In a statement on its partnership with robotics company Nuro, Domino’s executive vice president Kevin Vasconi observes that “Through all our prior rounds of testing we have learned that many customers are receptive to the idea of a self-driving vehicle delivering their pizza... Some customers even said they would prefer a self-driving vehicle to a delivery with a driver—we know it’s not for everybody, but there are customers who are interested in this type of delivery.”
Granted, Domino’s isn’t the only pizza company looking to get in on the future; early last year, Pizza Hut was the first to realize the warnings of the Black Mirror episode “Crocodile” with its own conceptual delivery vehicle. But with Domino’s and other companies helping to advance the cause, we’re just a handful of changed laws away from sharing the roads and highways with unmanned vehicles. Future’s great, right?