Walmart has partnered with Ford and self-driving technology company Waymo in two separate fully autonomous grocery delivery service pilot programs.
With the Ford pilot, which is underway in Miami-Dade County, Florida, Walmart is leveraging its existing partnership with delivery service Postmates to see how the service would have to evolve when fully autonomous vehicles are added.
Walmart believes shipping costs would be halved with fully autonomous grocery delivery, according to a report in CleanTechnica. “The offering seeks to bridge the gap that separates its brick and mortar stores model and its online warehouse competition at Amazon with same day, low cost delivery windows that would undercut the competition,” the article says.
The brief pilot with Waymo ran within a group of 400 of Waymo’s daily users and was based out of Walmart’s Chandler, California location. It explored how customers work with self-driving cars when it comes to grocery shopping.
Waymo is the current iteration of what was formerly known as Google’s self-driving car project.