Insight: The Crazy Future of Dubai Deliveries
With an increasing demand from end-users over the speed of delivery, as well as considerations around the sustainability of deliveries, a host of new solutions are being tested in Dubai that promise speedy, green and safe delivery of goods. In this piece, we explore each.
Dubai has built a name as a city that pushes the limits of what's possible and the transport delivery sector is no different.
Technology offers many new ways to deliver goods, and because of this, we have a host of startups and tech experts entering the space with the new solutions below:
1. Self-Driving Vehicles
Quite understandably, there is much public concern over self-driving vehicles with questions arising such as 'is it safe?', and, 'Can we trust robots to do as they're told?'
In reality, concerns such as this aren't really the problem as autonomous vehicles are likely to be much safer than human drivers given they have preprogrammed speeds and a variety of sensors that stop any crashes.
Further, such vehicles don't suffer from lapses in concentration or tiredness, yet the core problem surrounds the issue of when and if something goes wrong, who is to blame?
This is the real question to be solved and its one Dubai is eager to fix given His Highness Sheikh Mohammed, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has launched the Dubai Autonomous Transportation Strategy.
The strategy aims to transform 25% of the total transportation in Dubai to autonomous mode by 2030, saving AED22 billion (US$6 billion) in annual economic costs.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed said: "Our goal is to make the UAE a global source of the future for various sectors, including smart cities, clean energy, autonomous transportation, sustainable infrastructure and legislation for the future."
2. Drone Deliveries
Modern day e-commerce is big business across the world now and the UAE is no different, with an anticipated US$8 billion in sales by 2025 in the sector.
This figure may be somewhat increased when H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum's vision to see his drone delivery initiative in full swing.
The drone delivery programme promotes new ways that unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) can be used in vital sectors such as health, security, shipping, and food.
The move is also part of making Dubai greener and cleaner.
Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed said: “The Dubai Programme to Enable Drone Transportation will create an advanced infrastructure that enables innovators and relevant entities to test prototypes of unmanned aerial vehicles in designated areas and develop legislation that optimises their implementation.
"The programme aims to provide new economic opportunities and consolidate Dubai’s leadership in advanced technology research and development across diverse future-oriented sectors.”
Recently, we saw this plan coming into fruition after the first successful trial of a medicinal delivery via drone in Dubai Silicon Oasis (DSO).
When one thinks of robots, you could be forgiven for imagining human-like bots running and jumping over buildings (thanks Hollywood!).
However, the reality isn't quite as dramatic, yet it is still truly amazing what robots have in store for us.
As recently explored, in warehouses in the logistical chain we're already seeing robots take centre stage, yet now bots are stepping into the delivery space too.
Robots, which usually look like small automated vehicles, are an increasing option for companies wishing to create gains in the last mile.
Robots have advantages over other transportation methods as they can use pavements, cycle lanes and roads while reducing congestion and being greener.
In essence, bots can also take shorter paths to their destinations, thereby clocking faster delivery times.