Volvo and Uber unveil a production-ready autonomous auto


Pricing for food delivery via drone will likely be consistent with Uber Eats delivery rates.

At its Uber Elevate Summit, the company said it had regulatory approval to begin tests of delivering food by drone in the region of San Diego, California.

The Uber Eats drone announcement is just one of the updates out of Uber's "Elevate" arm, which is dedicated to pursuing Uber's aerial travel business. Uber took an Uber Eats order from McDonald's in the video.

It works this way: Workers at a restaurant load the meal into a drone and it takes off, tracked and guided by a new aerospace management system.

In the future, Uber hopes to land the drones on parked vehicles located near each delivery location to allow the final delivery by hand.

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Uber plans to deploy these cars as an autonomous ridesharing service.

"We've been working closely with the FAA to ensure that we're meeting requirements and prioritising safety", said Luke Fischer, head of flight operations at Uber Elevate, the company's division focused on revolutionising operations in the skies.

Additional restaurant partners will be added to the trial later this year, including local restaurant Juniper and Ivy.

Following two years of collaboration, Volvo and Uber are ready to show off their jointly developed production auto capable of driving by itself. "When paired with our self-driving technology, this vehicle will be a key ingredient in Uber's autonomous product suite", commented Eric Meyhofer, CEO of Uber Advanced Technologies Group.

The Volvo XC90 prototype will be "capable of fully driving itself", according to an Uber statement, with sensors atop and built into the vehicle to allow it to operate and maneuver in an urban environment. "Our agreement with Uber underlines our ambition to be the supplier of choice to the world's leading ride-hailing companies", said Håkan Samuelsson, president and chief executive of Volvo Cars.