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Technology, rules keep Amazon drone delivery in hangar, for now

03
Dec
2013

By Bill Rigby SEATTLE (Reuters) – Amazon.com Inc Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos made a splash on Sunday with his radical plan to deliver goods to millions of its customers doors by using a fleet of unmanned drones, but the bold vision is not likely to become a reality this decade. By Bezos own admission, the technology that would enable electric-powered octocopters to fly to pre-programmed addresses unaided by humans is still early in development, and the United States is not likely to establish rules for civilian unmanned aircraft systems until 2015 at the earliest. The piece was aired on the eve of Cyber Monday, one of the busiest online shopping days of the year when it helps Amazon to be on the minds of customers. Dubbed Prime Air by Amazon, the vehicles could be used to deliver packages up to 5 lbs (2.3 kg) in less than 30 minutes within a 10-mile (16-km) radius of Amazons so-called fulfillment centers, said Bezos.

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