Amazon Drone Delivery Just Came Closer to Reality

Image Credit: Sean Gallup/Getty Images News/GettyImages

Most visions of the future involve robots, for better or for worse. It's not all Terminator or The Matrix — sometimes we imagine a world where friendly technology genuinely makes our lives easier, safer, and cheaper. Sometimes we even bring it into being. After all, we now think talking to a smart speaker is as normal as ordering a latte from a barista. Sometimes the future comes into view while no one is even looking.

That might be the case for one of Amazon's long-held goals: to speed up deliveries and to cut out the middleman as much as possible. Over the weekend, the Federal Aviation Administration granted the Everything Store a special certificate that enables Amazon to start offering drone deliveries widely in the United States. There's no further information on when this might go on offer, and Amazon has been working toward delivery drones since at least 2013. But if all goes according to plan, your Prime order might someday drop at your door in 30 minutes or less, and sooner than you think.

Of course, there are reasons to be wary of these plans. Researchers at the University of Texas at Dallas have just published a study into how drone deliveries would change supply chains and production capabilities, and Amazon itself has faced backlash in the past for pushing profits over personnel. If the thought of letting Amazon drones (or even just delivery people) break into your house or your car unnerves you, you have plenty of other shopping options. It might pay to use them before we're all ducking packages dropping out of the sky.