UPS Flight Forward (UPSFF) recently partnered with CVS Pharmacy to develop and quickly launch a last-mile delivery platform that will deliver prescription drugs to consumers.
The new service is expected to roll out in several U.S. cities in the coming weeks. Flight Forward is the only company in the U.S. that can operate a “Drone Airline” under FAA Part 135 that was granted to the company on September 27, 2019.
@ups is taking drones beyond the #healthcare industry. In partnership with @cvshealth, they will explore the use of #drones for delivering prescriptions and retail products to the homes of CVS residential customers. #UPSdrones🚁 pic.twitter.com/UcgYBZphgF
— Sky Higgins, M.Ed. (@skyleehiggins) October 23, 2019
Earlier this month, we documented how UPS launched an air delivery service across WakeMed’s hospital campus in Raleigh, N.C.
We said, “Flight Forward is currently expanding drone networks on academic and hospital campuses across the country, and will shortly expand to other businesses. During the build-out, Flight Forward plans to go beyond the line of sight, which means the drones could one day fly from city to city, or even across the country.”
Flight Forward teamed up with Matternet, to produce the M2 quadcopter, has been exempted by the FAA to fly “beyond visual line of sight.” The drone can fly upwards of 6 miles, weather permitted of course, and carry a payload of about 5 pounds.
Flight Forward’s drone delivery service at WakeMed and soon to be an unknown number of CVS locations in several unknown cities in the coming weeks is a clear indication the parcel service is ahead of rivals Amazon and Google.
Last week, Flight Forward signed deals with the University of Utah Health hospital, Kaiser Permanente, and AmerisourceBergen Corp, to deliver biological samples and other cargo within a six-mile range.
UPS is expected to be the leader in unmanned aerial vehicle delivery across the U.S. through the early 2020s. Megacorporations have figured out that the only successful transportation method for the last-mile is drones.