Grocery delivery services are nothing new, but Walmart and Google autonomous vehicle venture Waymo’s new partnership aims to take one more factor out of the equation: the driver.
The two companies said Wednesday that a pilot program will take place in Waymo’s Phoenix self-driving car hub to allow shoppers to order groceries online and have them picked up and dropped off by an autonomous vehicle, according to NPR.
Participants in Waymo's “early riders” program can take a driverless shuttle to and from Walmart after purchasing their groceries online. They will be eligible to receive incentives such as no-cost rides to and from the store as part of the trial program. Store employees at Walmart pick out the customers’ groceries and bring them right out to the car, either a Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid minivan or Jaguar I-Pace electric crossover.
The goal of the pilot program is to “make shopping more convenient” according to a blog post by Waymo, which the company says is a top priority of its current users. The program will only last for a limited time in the Phoenix area at a single Walmart store in suburban Chandler, Arizona, to start.