News Column

Domino's Test-flies Pizza Drone: VIDEO

June 5, 2013

Ben Unglesbee

Domino's pizza drone (image: YouTube)
Domino's pizza drone (image: YouTube)

A United Kingdom Domino's Pizza has flown what may be the world's first unmanned aerial pizza delivery on record. Dubbed the "DomniCopter," the remote-controlled, eight-propeller aircraft flew two pepperoni pizzas over the skies of a town near London.

The U.K. Domino's franchise hired a creative agency based out of England called T + Biscuits to design the flight, according to NBC News, and uploaded video of the flight to its YouTube channel. Where the idea goes from here isn't clear.

Corporate spokesmen at the chain's Ann Arbor, Mich., headquarters put distance between the company and the U.K. franchise experimenting with drone-borne pizzas. Domino's U.S. spokesman Tim McIntyre told CNN Money that "this has nothing to do with us in the U.S., and we have no plans to pursue this idea."

Many anticipate that domestic drones could have many business applications, food delivery among them. Under current rules, the DomniCopter couldn't deliver a pizza to a U.S. customer because of restrictions against commercial use of unmanned aerial vehicles.

For now the vehicles are restricted to hobbyists, government offices and not-for-profit use. The Federal Aviation Administration is to rewrite those rules by 2015 to open the way for private use of the technology, but some cities and states have already put restrictions and bans on "domestic drones" to pre-empt privacy concerns.

Here's the video of the DomniCopter pizza drone:

To reach Ben Unglesbee, call 816-234-4072 or send email to Twitter: @Bunglesbee.


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