Ford and Domino's Pizza in September will begin testing Michigan consumers' reactions to having their pies delivered by self-driving vehicles. Fred Katayama reports.
Domino's Pizza will deliver pies to randomly selected customers in the Ann Arbor area in a most unusual way - a self-driving Ford Fusion Hybrid. The test program will take place in September, and the Fords will be piloted by human drivers. Customers will be able to track them on GPS. They will get text messages once their pizza arrives. Autotrader's senior analyst Michelle Krebs says it's a nice try but not much more than a PR stunt. (SOUNDBITE) MICHELLE KREBS, SENIOR ANALYST, AUTOTRADER, (ENGLISH) SAYING: "We are a long way from self-driving vehicles being ubiquitous. We are going to see them roll out in specific fleets, specific purposes, but they're just not going to be everywhere, I suspect, for another decade." A number of start-up delivery services, many of them funded by venture capital, have been experimenting with on-demand delivery of different packages, including groceries, prepared food, and beverages. So have larger companies, from Uber Technologies to Amazon.