Domino’s is launching autonomous pizza delivery with a tiny self-driving car

  • In Houston, Domino’s delivers pizzas in an autonomous robot.
  • Nuro, the robotics company, also works with CVS, Walmart, and Chipotle.
  • During the pandemic, delivery for restaurants was huge, and chains like Domino’s are on the rise.
  • You can find more articles on Insider’s business page.

Domino’s will begin delivering pizzas using autonomous self-driving robots from Nuro, the companies said.

The program will be available to certain Houston, Texas customers with Nuros R2, the first autonomous on-road delivery vehicle to be approved by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Customers can order pizza online and receive delivery through Nuro. They then receive texts with information about the location of the vehicle and a PIN that they can enter on the touchscreen and receive their pizza.

Continue reading: Chipotle’s chief technology officer reveals the chain’s strategy for using Nuro’s autonomous vehicles for burrito bowl deliveries and more

Dennis Maloney, senior vice president and chief innovation officer for Domino, says Nuro is part of the development of the delivery.

“With this program, we can better understand how customers react to the deliveries, how they interact with the robot and how this affects business operations,” Maloney said in a statement. “The growing demand for savory pizza is driving more deliveries and we look forward to seeing how Autonomous Delivery can work with Domino’s existing delivery experts to better serve customers’ needs.”

Nuro x Dominos Image 1

Pizza and wings were hailed as early winners of the pandemic as Americans increasingly ordered from brands like Papa John’s and Wingstop that were already set up for delivery. Domino added over 600 new stores in 2020. Total sales increased by 10.4% over the course of the year. The rest of the industry saw huge losses, up to $ 30 billion in March 2020 and $ 50 billion in April 2020.

During the pandemic, delivery, roadside pickup and drive-thru sales for restaurants skyrocketed as indoor dining closed and consumers avoided shopping at restaurants and grocery stores.

Nuro from California uses this surge in delivery as an opportunity to expand. So far, the company has partnered with Walmart, CVS, Kroger and Chipotle.

“Nuro’s mission is to improve everyday life through robotics. Now, for the first time, we are launching autonomous deliveries in the real world with R2 and Dominoes,” said co-founder and president Dave Ferguson in a statement.

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