Robotic Food Delivery Startups Taking Over With Projected $1.8 Billion Industry Growth

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The future is here, and it looks like robots delivering food straight to your door. 

The rise in online food ordering and delivery services has created a demand for fast and accurate processes, driving many eateries to seek out innovative solutions for optimizing their delivery pipelines. 

Cue the robots. Autonomous and semiautonomous delivery systems offer a high degree of consistency, enabling faster order processing and reduced time spent navigating traffic, ultimately resulting in quicker service and higher levels of customer satisfaction.

Companies such as Kiwibot and Starship Technologies have made significant strides in this area. Kiwibot leases delivery robots and Starship launched on-demand food delivery services on college campuses.

Retail investors have been investing millions into AI startups like RAD AI and Atombeam. RAD AI has raised over $3.1 million from retail investors for its current Wefunder raise to scale its AI marketing platform. AtomBeam’s StartEngine campaign has already cleared $1.2 million for it’s patented AI data compaction platform.

Kiwibot: Kiwibot signed a groundbreaking $10 million deal with kineo finance, a Swiss asset financing group. The deal marks a significant milestone for the autonomous delivery sector, as it's the first of its kind and indicates it has reached the next stage in its maturity. With the help of leasing, Kiwibot can focus on developing and expanding its service beyond its current base and further revolutionize how customers receive their meals.

Its robotic delivery service is raising eyebrows with its combination of traditional GPS and generated maps. These smart robots can identify multiple routes to ensure timely delivery to their destinations. To supplement their navigation, each Kiwibot comes equipped with its own onboard software and remote monitoring to ensure smooth operations. This level of sophistication comes at a price, making each unit costly. Despite the expense, Kiwibot remains committed to providing its customers with high-quality service, even if it means investing in advanced technology.

Coco Delivery: Southern California has become a testing ground for companies hoping to distinguish themselves in this competitive market. Among these companies is Coco Delivery, previously known as Cyan Robotics, which operates a fleet of semi-automated robots that deliver food across neighborhoods in Los Angeles.

Equipped with GPS tracking, two-way microphones and a human pilot controlling them from far away, Coco's 50-pound pink robots have captured the attention of hundreds of stores and restaurants. According to the company, these bots can fulfill orders within up to a two-mile radius of the store, providing quick and efficient deliveries to customers.

Starship Technologies: Starship Technologies recently announced the launch of its on-demand food delivery service at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNC Charlotte). The leading provider of autonomous delivery services has deployed a fleet of 30 robots to deliver food and drinks from Wendy’s, Bojangles and Shake Smart, with more campus eateries to be added throughout March. By the end of the month, the robots will service 10 retailers on campus.

With a student and faculty population of almost 30,000, UNC Charlotte is an ideal location for Starship to showcase its technology. Users can order their meals through the Starship Food Delivery app (available for iOS and Android) and have their food delivered to any location on campus within minutes. This new service provides a convenient and efficient way for students and faculty to access their favorite meals and snacks, while also demonstrating the potential of autonomous delivery technology.

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Nuro Inc.: Domino’s Pizza was one of the first chains to implement the use of AI robots for delivery. In 2021, Domino's been experimenting with robot delivery systems in select markets. The company partnered with robotics startup Nuro Inc. to deploy autonomous vehicles for pizza delivery. These vehicles were equipped with temperature-controlled compartments to keep pizzas warm during transit, and customers can use a unique code to unlock the compartments and retrieve their orders.

The delivery robots market is poised for explosive growth in the coming years, according to a report by MarketsandMarkets™. The report states that the market is projected to grow to $1.8 billion by 2028, representing a compound annual growth rate of 33.7%. 

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