Google Testing Burrito-Delivering Drones In Virginia

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Thanks to numerous impressive technological advancements, we'll soon be able to wear smart jackets which notify us of incoming messages, ride in autonomous vehicles which will always be aware of traffic conditions and choose the optimal route on the fly, put on smart glasses which will record high-resolution video and upload it directly to our Snapchat, and—most importantly—get pilotless aircraft to deliver us burritos. In fact, students at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University are already experiencing the latter, i.e. living the dream. Namely, the said university is the testing ground of choice for the latest project of the secretive X division within Alphabet – a burrito-delivering drone.

The drone is the latest invention of Project Wing which has so far resulted in numerous drone experiments all over the world. X likely opted to test its food carrier at the Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg because that's the most densely populated US location out of the six approved for Project Wing experiments by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). People interested in participating in the company's burrito delivery test have to be invited by existing participants and aren't allowed to take professional pictures or videos of Google's aircraft. The test is conducted in an open area protected by safety nets opposing the famous Virginia Smart Road. Once they're at the location, participants order their food from a simple ticket dispenser which issues numbered tickets and charges a $5.99 drone delivery fee.

The drone is based in a Chipotle Mexican Grill truck parked in a nearby valley. From there, the small aircraft quickly and efficiently delivers food to its hungry customers. Of course, given that it's still a prototype, the actual package is handled by Google's employees who hand-serve the food to participants inside safety nets. After everything is said and done, participants can share their opinion on the experience by filling a short questionnaire and are given Project Wing hats so that they have something to remember the experience by. As if having a burrito delivered by a pilotless aircraft is something anyone would forget. Of course, we're still a long way from actual commercial applications of this technology but rest assured that the Google X team is hard at work designing a perfect delivery solution for all of us burrito lovers.

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