David Sparks Ph.D.
David Sparks Ph.D.

At the University of Idaho campus in Moscow, there’s a lot of buzz about little FOOD DELIVERY ROBOTS cruising around campus.

“I was actually a little confused, I wasn’t really sure what they were.

I had never seen anything like this ever before,” said University of Idaho Senior Carlos Arriaga.

“It’s pretty neat, this is the first campus in Idaho to have food delivery robots,” said Andrew Tucker, Starship Technologies Site Lead.

“Definitely something that I was surprised to see but it was really cool, honestly. Especially when I found out what they actually did.  I didn’t know they delivered food until I saw the big ole sticker that said, Hey, I deliver food,” said Arriaga.

“We launched on campuses in 2018 and now this is about the 25th campus in the United States. We also operate in 5 countries,” said Tucker.

The autonomous delivery robots are a product of Starship Technologies, a company started in 2014 by the founders of Skype. It’s headquartered in San Francisco, with engineering operations based in Estonia. To use it, you download the Starship App onto your smartphone, and then you can order from one of the restaurants on campus.

“When you place your order, prior to that you just tell it where you want it to meet you, so that it’s going to be outside in front of your dorm room or in front of your house if you’re here on campus housing,” said Tucker.

“Once I downloaded the app it was super easy to navigate. You just pick a location where you want the robot to go, it has a real time tracker so you can track it, and then you come outside and pick up your food. Super easy to use,” said Arriaga.

“I ordered a bagel and a coffee, yeah. I had 15 minutes in between classes so I thought it’d be a perfect opportunity to test it out and it worked perfectly.”

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