I just spent a week on the beach in Cape Cod, Mass. Nothing better than sunshine, relaxation with the family, and the occasional treat from the beachside ice cream truck.
Or so I thought.
I actually had to get out of my chair and walk a couple hundred yards to the ice cream truck, while the lucky beachgoers in Mablethorpe, a small seaside town in Lincolnshire, England, are lucky enough to have ice cream delivered to them via drone.
Rock & Ices, an ice cream shop located on the Mablethorpe seafront, successfully tested a drone delivery system that used a modified DJI Inspire drone and three GPS sensors to carry up to four ice creams to customers so they don’t have to break a sweat.
Customers use the Ice Me smartphone app to order one of six varieties of ice cream, and their order is displayed on an iPad in the store. Best of all: there’s no extra charge for drone delivery. The drone can carry up to 2.64 lb.
“We have often been asked about delivering ice creams on the beach and with the poor weather at the start of the season we are looking at ways at helping visitors to the resort enjoy more beach time now the sun has arrived,” said Nigel Stephenson, director of Rock & Ices. “We first looked at how someone could remotely order an ice cream and as most people now use apps for everything thought we should have an app. We then needed to find a cost effective solution to deliver ice creams to people on the beach.”
During the trials, a certified drone pilot flew the drone via remote control. However, if this ice cream drone delivery system is approved by the UK’s Civil Aviation Authority, Rock & Ices will have to figure out a long-term approach for flying the drones. It gets windy on the beach, and wind and drones don’t mix. Just ask aspiring model Jess Adams.