Amazon’s Jeff Bezos is committed to what Jeff calls Kaizen, the Japanese business philosophy of continuous improvement. Read here from Wired magazine how Bezos hopes to get stuff to us all more quickly and cheaply through the use of drones.
“Nineteen years ago, I drove the Amazon packages to the post office every evening in the back of my Chevy Blazer,” Bezos writes in his latest annual letter to shareholders. “My vision extended so far that I dreamed we might one day get a forklift.”But since then, Amazon has gotten a little more ambitious. After many critics (including us) derided his announcement late last year that his company was testing delivery drones, Bezos also used his letter say that the company is doubling down on this wildly ambitious project. Not only is the delivery drone program happening, but according to the CEO, it’s well underway. “The Prime Air team is already flight testing our 5th and 6th generation aerial vehicles, and we are in the design phase on generations 7 and 8,” he writes.
His bullishness on drones isn’t entirely unfounded, following arecent court ruling that nixed the Federal Aviation Administration’s authority to ban commercial use of small unmanned aerial vehicles. Others are working on drone delivery, and in the distant future, this kind of thing may be commonplace, assuming cultural norms evolve along with the technology. In the near term, it’s hard to see how swarms of small octocopters traveling from warehouses to people’s backyards will actually improve the efficiency of Amazon’s retail operation. But one way or another, the CEO’s letter shows, Amazon will continue to hone a delivery network that pushes the limits of instant gratification.