While the word "drone" might conjure images of people being killed by an unmanned craft or being spied on, Manayunk Cleaners in Philadelphia is using a remote-controlled drone to deliver laundry to their customers.
“I’m all about technology and I see a lot of these cleaners, it’s so old school," Manayunk Cleaners owner Harout Vartanian told NBC Philadelphia. "You come in … and you just pick it up. I needed to spice things up.”
Vartanian has converted a DJI Phantom quadracopter into a dry cleaning delivery drone (video below).
“We fly it to your house, it makes a noise, you pick it up and that’s that,” Vartanian said. “We posted a video to YouTube and it went viral. And ever since then, people have been asking ‘Hey, can you deliver my clothes by drone? Right now, this particular model can only carry 1-2 pounds. There’s a higher-end model that we haven’t purchased yet, but obviously in the future that’s what we’re going to use. It carries around 5-10 pounds.”
Vartanian wants to eventually use drones to deliver clothes to all his customers.
The Federal Aviation Administration, or FAA, actually bans people or businesses from operating a drone for compensation or hire, but Vartanian doesn't think his drone falls under the FAA rules. He says his drone is “just a toy” to promote his business.
Congress has told the FAA to develop guidelines for commercial drone use by 2015.
Source: NBC Philadelphia