Amazon, the largest e-commerce company in the US, wants to use autonomous drones to deliver packages to customers. However, it is being frustrated at the slow pace of drone legislation by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), so is now testing its Prime Air system in countries more favourable to drones.
As E&T News reported recently, while the FAA has issued an experimental airworthiness certificate to an Amazon business unit and its prototype drone, allowing test flights over private rural land in the state of Washington, a British delivery firm has already beaten Amazon to complete the UK’s first test delivery by drone, shipping a belt tensioner to a customer aboard a modified off-the-shelf unmanned aircraft.
As if that wasn’t bad enough, the tortoise-in-treacle pace of FAA legislation has allowed companies in other countries, such as the UK, Japan and China, to get a headstart in the drones marketplace at the expense of American firms.
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