C-store giant 7‑Eleven Inc. is bringing a futuristic innovation to Mountain View, CA,. The convenience store chain is piloting autonomous delivery technology with Nuro, a robotics company specializing in autonomous vehicles.
The autonomous commercial delivery program is launching in California, 7-Eleven enabling customers in the pilot service area to order through its 7NOW delivery app, which now features a selection for delivery via bot.
“7‑Eleven has owned and defined convenience since 1927,” said Raghu Mahadevan, 7‑Eleven chief digital officer. “Our first foray into autonomous delivery was in 2016 when 7‑Eleven became the first retailer in the U.S. to make a drone delivery to a customer’s house."
How it works
- Consumers download the 7NOW delivery app.
- To place an order, users browse the app, add items to the shopping cart, begin the checkout process and choose autonomous delivery. Autonomous vehicle deliveries are available daily from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. PT and there is no additional charge for customers in Mountain View, CA.
- The 7NOW delivery app will send updates as the order is processed; orders are supposed to arrive within 30 minutes.
- When orders arrive, customers meet the autonomous vehicle outside and grab items from the back.
The 7-Eleven delivery service will begin with Nuro's autonomous Priuses. Its R2 robots, custom-built to transport products without any occupants in the vehicle, will be added to the service later. Nuro was reportedly the first autonomous vehicle company to receive a deployment permit from the California DMV.