Walmart is a massive company, housing almost anything a customer could ever want inside their stores. The size of some Walmart stores is astounding, with some Super centers being over 200,00 square feet in area. With stores so large, Walmart is considering using drones to help customers by retrieving groceries for them, to help customers save time and energy.
In the United States, drones are heavily regulated and require permissions to fly in many areas outdoors. Because Walmart wants to fly drones inside its stores, company officials anticipate being able to get permission to do so without any issues.
Fortune found a patent filed by Walmart involving a method that allows drones to carry items in shopping facilities. The drone would be able to pick up products and return with them, almost like a person shopper for the customer.
In order to facilitate this, according to the patent, a computer would monitor drones inside a store; the computer would direct the drones to the specified products and then to the delivery point. Drones will have sensors attached to them to prevent them from bumping into anything; and in order to avoid customers, drones will fly closer to the ceiling than to the ground.
Having personal shopper drones might encourage customers to come in even if they’re in a rush, or if they’d like to sit down and have something to eat until their drone is done shopping. Even if the customer would like to walk around the store, the drone would be able to carry products for them. Drones can also help with stocking shelves, and with helping people with disabilities shop by making the entire process more accessible.
Walmart is likely to implement their drone program quickly, as it can only help their company grow. Drones will not only allow shopping to be more convenient for customers, but they will also cut costs by allowing many employees with drones.