Meituan, the Chinese food delivery platform, has unveiled its fourth-generation drone model, designed to enhance its urban low-altitude logistics and distribution services. The new model boasts improved economy, environmental adaptability, and safety features, making it suitable for a variety of weather conditions. Meituan has partnered with Ad-MOTO, an advertising technology start-up, to convert 200 of its e-scooters into digital advertising displays, offering a potential new revenue stream.
The fourth-generation drone has a maximum load capacity of 2.5 kg and can cover a delivery distance of up to 10 kilometers. With an average delivery time of 15 minutes within a 3-kilometer radius, the drone aims to provide efficient and convenient delivery services. It is equipped with advanced features such as dual flight control redundancy, binocular stereo vision cameras, and 4D millimeter-wave radar for enhanced safety and navigation.
Meituan’s drone business, which currently operates in cities like Shenzhen and Shanghai, is set to expand following the recent release of regulations by the State Council and the Central Military Commission to promote the commercial use of drones. The company aims to collaborate with the government to explore additional routes.
According to Mao Niannian, head of Meituan’s drone business, the integration of drones into Meituan’s delivery network is intended to complement the work of delivery staff, rather than replace them. The drones are expected to improve work efficiency and reduce congestion on the roads, ultimately providing a better service experience for customers.
The launch of the fourth-generation drone is part of Meituan’s broader strategy to establish an urban low-altitude logistics network. The company has obtained the necessary approvals from the Civil Aviation Administration of China, allowing it to operate as a city-level cargo airline. Meituan’s intelligent dispatching system, powered by artificial intelligence, enables efficient route planning and real-time monitoring of the drone fleet for enhanced safety.
As consumer demand for timely delivery continues to grow, Meituan aims to meet these expectations by leveraging drone technology. With its advantages in speed, efficiency, and environmental sustainability, drones are becoming an increasingly popular choice in the distribution industry. Meituan’s investment in the drone business reflects its commitment to innovation and providing efficient delivery services to its customers.