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Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Nuro: the Robo-delivery Startup

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Nuro is a company with the core belief that everyone should benefit from great technological innovations. Consequently, the team at Nuro is preparing for a future whereby robots help in making life more comfortable as well as helping this company connect with the things we love and people in society.

Therefore, together, our goal is to push the boundaries of robotics hence leading to an improvement of human life.

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The founders of this company, Jiajun Zhu and Dave Ferguson have dedicated their learning both machines and robotics. Up until recently, these two were involved in Google’s self-driving car project known as Waymo as Principal Engineers before deciding to form Nuro in 2016. The primary goal of founding this company was to exploit the power of artificial intelligence and robotics in a bid to solve the new challenges facing our society at a global scale thus saw the need to develop an autonomous delivery machine.

Our company also comprises of the brightest minds in both academia and industry with experts in autonomous vehicles, robotics, automotive and consumer electronics from companies such as GM, Apple, Google, Uber, Waymo, and Tesla.

Moreover, our staff comes from some of the top universities in the globe, and this includes Caltech, Cambridge, Berkeley, Freiburg, MIT, Princeton, Chicago, Oxford, Waterloo, U of M, Toronto, UNC, Stamford, Harvard, Fudan, and CMU. Some of our team members have also received awards from numerous global competitions such as DAPRA Urban Challenge, ImageNet, and DAPRA Robotics Challenge.

Features of the Nuro

  1. Inside the Nuro are two compartments which are used to store all the items being delivered to customers by these autonomous delivery machines. Additionally, this space can comfortably accommodate a maximum of 10 big shopping bags which weigh approximately 250 pounds.
  2. These autonomous delivery machines are smaller in comparison to self-driving vehicles with its size being about half the size of a sedan regarding width and depth. Hence, in comparison to self-driving vehicles, implementation of the Nuro is somewhat easier.
  3. In front of these autonomous delivery machines are black windshields like traditional care; therefore, individuals can easily tell which direction the Nuro is headed.
  4. Usually, the Nuro is not meant to travel on highways, only on local roads, thus meaning they never move at high speeds. Furthermore, they always ride in the middle of the lane, far from the curb.
  5. These autonomous delivery machines will come with a touchpad which customers use to unlock the vehicles, and compartments which can be controlled remotely.

The function of the Nuro

Nuro wants to avail these autonomous delivery machines to firms which would have otherwise not been able to offer delivery services, and this includes hardware stores, florists and local greengrocers. These businesses often do not provide delivery services, but with the Nuro, they can subsequently rent space in these autonomous delivery vehicles and send to their customers.

Future of the Company

According to Ferguson, one of Nuro’s founders, the company still has not decided on what business model it will take, whether it is charge by delivery, a subscription model or renting out space in these autonomous delivery machines. However, no matter the business model the firm decides to take, the management of all its fleet will still be done by the company.

Additionally, the objective of the company by the end of the year is to turn this prototype into something scalable. As a result, the company has embarked on a plan to have these autonomous delivery machines running in specific states in the United States.

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