Retail giant Walmart is launching a new pilot program with autonomous vehicle company Udelv in Arizona.
Facing heightened competition from e-commerce giant Amazon, Walmart is getting creative in its latest effort to increase customer convenience. The company announced today it has partnered with autonomous vehicle startup Udelv to expand its grocery pickup and delivery program to include autonomous delivery vans. The pilot program will take place in Surprise, Arizona.
This isn’t Walmart’s first venture into autonomous vehicle delivery testing, either. The company previously announced pilot programs with self-driving car companies Ford and Waymo as it expands delivery to more than 100 cities across the U.S. According to the announcement, the company is investing in these tests “to start understanding how customers will want to use the technology when it comes to their grocery shopping.”
CNBC noted Walmart is investing in online grocery delivery at the right time, as online spending by U.S. consumers for groceries is expected to climb 15 percent this year, according to a survey conducted by grocer advisory group Brick Meets Click.
Read the full announcement here.
Photo courtesy of Walmart.