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Nuro’s Self-Driving Car Will Buy Your Groceries For You

If you’re not ready to risk your life aboard Uber or Google’s self-driving car (although real-world testing are showing great results!), then maybe you can take this first step into automated driving and let this self-driving car do your errands.

Last month, a Silicon Valley startup called Nuro launched their cute, minimalist appliance on wheels—what its co-founder Dave Ferguson is calling a “local teleportation service”—that will carry packages and groceries from door to door.

The tiny delivery pod comes with a customizable interior that can carry about 250 pounds. Customizable is a key word here since it can be tailored fit to the kinds of goods you want delivered. Groceries and raw meat? Stock it inside a refrigerated interior. Delivering bottles? Stick in some shelves. Transporting laundry? Equip the car with hanging racks.

 

 

The market for delivery service continues to grow with the rise of food delivery services and online shopping. In fact, many other companies tried testing human-free delivery services in the last years such as Ford’s Domino pizza delivery and Toyota’s e-Palette which already partnered with Pizza Hut and Amazon.

But Nuro has particularly gained attention after putting on-board its team a number of experienced employees sourced from Bay Area giants including Apple Inc., Google, Tesla Inc., and Uber Technologies Inc. Its other co-founder, Jiajun Zhu, was one of the very first engineers that worked on Google’s self-driving unit Waymo.

If you’re worried about security, Nuro assures that the vehicle is able to avoid a particularly unruly kid without leaving its lane.

“Most of these things sort of drive like my grandma. If someone’s inside the vehicle, that’s annoying. If no one’s inside the vehicle, that’s actually a strictly positive thing,” Ferguson said. He also said that the Nuro cars are equipped with a security technology that it will even crash itself into a parked car or tree to avoid crashing into a pedestrian.

With everything going the AI route nowadays, we can’t help but ask, are we ready to plunge into the future?