Walmart — playing catch-up with Amazon in the high-tech delivery space — said it has begun testing drones to deliver groceries and other household goods.
The Arkansas-based retail giant said Wednesday it has launched a pilot in Fayetteville, North Carolina with drone company Flytrex to deliver select grocery items and household essential items.
Walmart’s announcement included a video of a drone leaving a Walmart parking lot and flying over a suburb, stopping above a home where it slowly lowers a blue Walmart bag attached to a string. The bag is picked up by a boy and the drone flies away.
“We know that it will be some time before we see millions of packages delivered via drone,” Tom Ward, senior vice president of customer product said in a statement. “That still feels like a bit of science fiction, but we’re at a point where we’re learning more and more about the technology that is available and how we can use it to make our customers’ lives easier. ”
The pilot comes on the heels of Amazon winning approval last month from the Federal Aviation Administration to use drones to deliver packages via drone.
At the time Amazon said it would “fully integrate delivery drones into the airspace, and work closely with the F.A.A. and other regulators around the world to realize our vision of 30-minute delivery.”