Pizza delivery with 5G and autonomous driving: the future has arrived

In Stockholm, the experimental phase of Doora, the small self-driving robot that has a very specific task: to deliver pizzas to your doorstep, has begun.

Among the many innovations that a widespread, stable and powerful 5G network will be able to enable, there is also autonomous driving: vehicles connected to the Internet, able to follow a map to make a route interpreting, thanks to artificial intelligence, what is happening on the road as they move. For the transportation of humans, this technology is not yet ready, partly due to safety regulation issues, but for the transportation of pizza apparently it is.

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In Sweden, in fact, the telephone operator Tele2 has announced an agreement with foodora, the German food delivery giant, for the deployment of a self-driving robot on wheels, named Doora, connected in 5G, which will have a very specific task: to bring pizzas home to the citizens of Stockholm. It is still a test, started this week, but the prospects are promising also thanks to the very low traffic in Stockholm, which makes life much easier for Doora. At the same time it's a very interesting experiment in the application of IoT, the Internet of Things (where everything is connected to send and receive data and commands), to the world of retail. Less happy are riders, who may soon find themselves with a dangerous competitor.

How Doora, the pizza robot, works

Doora is basically cube-shaped pizza containers resting on two motorized wheels, or a hoverboard with a pizza basket mounted on top, if you will.

Because it is connected to Tele2's 5G network, Doora can sense its surroundings, communicate with its servers and receive a map and route for delivery, which it will then carry out unassisted thanks to autonomous driving. Doora has a camera that sends real-time information via 5G to foodora, which can track and follow the robot and quickly send data to and from Doora.

Thanks to the same system also the customer can follow the status of his pizza delivery, looking on the map where Doora is with the precious load.

Si può fare grazie al 5G

Per quanto Doora sia un dispositivo IoT mobile di piccole dimensioni, le sfide (e soprattutto gli ostacoli) che deve affrontare ogni giorno sul suo tragitto sono gli stessi che incontrano anche le più moderne auto a guida autonoma e semi-autonoma in commercio o in fase di test.

In altre parole: per compiere il semplice gesto di consegnare una pizza Doora deve analizzare, calcolare e ricevere trasmettere una enorme molte di dati, in continuazione e senza “buchi" che potrebbero causare uno stop della consegna perché il robot, semplicemente, non sa più dove si trova.

Il segreto, naturalmente, è il 5G che con la sua velocità di trasmissione e la sua bassissima latenza permette lo scambio di una gran quantità di dati in modo assai rapido ed affidabile.

È fantastico poter condurre questo test insieme all’innovatore foodora. Qui abbiamo l’opportunità di mostrare i vantaggi tangibili sia per i consumatori che per le aziende con 5G e IoT, come stabilità, risposta rapida e velocità più elevate. Con Doora, mostriamo cosa possiamo fare con il 5G, sia ora che in futuro“, afferma Stefan Trampus, Business Area Manager per il mercato aziendale di Tele2.