Prime Air, a futuristic concept introduced on Sunday via a "60 Minutes" segment, could be the future for online shopping. Amazon, in conjunction with its Prime membership program that already offers free two-day shipping, debuts a new delivery concept.
The system involves using a drone (unmanned small plane or quadricopter) to deliver the package once the an Amazon order is placed, picked, and packaged. The drone would grab the packages, providing that it is less than five lbs, directly off a conveyor belt and fly it to its specified location.
While many have doubts that the technology would even work, or would at least experience difficulties navigating in certain urban or rural environments, Amazon and proponents think differently.
In fact, Amazon believes that once regulatory FAA hurdles are cleared, and some minor improvements are made in the technology, Prime Air could be operational by 2015. Amazon has already experimented with expanded grocery delivery, same day shipping, and even delivering on Sunday through the US Postal Service.
Using drones would just be the next step in customizing Amazon's delivery methods, enhancing the overall online ordering process.