Fast Company's Adele Peters reports that a San Francisco-based startup, Zipline, plans to start making drone deliveries at a commercial, high-volume scale—making it potentially the first company to do so, ahead of larger players such as Amazon and DHL.
Zipline plans to begin using its new drones to deliver medical supplies—namely, blood—in July. The drones would pick up blood from Rwandan blood banks to rural areas for emergency transfusions.
"It's a really tough logistics challenge," says Keller Rinaudo, Zipline's cofounder. "So what we're trying to do is instead of them trying to predict what they need and having a large percentage of that blood go to waste, they can basically keep all of the blood centralized in two blood banks in the whole country. Then every single hospital and health center is in a 15- to 45-minute delivery of any blood transfusion regardless of the type of blood, all the time."