Amazon approved by FAA to deliver packages via drone

ByJoseph Pisani AP logo
Tuesday, September 1, 2020
Amazon's delivery drones may be grounded by new FAA rules
As Amazon finally gets FAA drone approval, here's a look at some of the rules that kept them grounded until now.

Getting an Amazon package delivered from the sky is closer to becoming a reality.

The Federal Aviation Administration said Monday it had granted Amazon approval to deliver packages by drones.

Amazon said that the approval is an "important step," but added that it is still testing and flying the drones. It did not say when it expected drones to make deliveries to shoppers.

RELATED: Walmart launches new subscription program with same-day delivery

Walmart Plus will offer customers perks in an effort to compete with Amazon.

The online shopping giant has been working on drone delivery for years, but it has been slowed by regulatory hurdles. Back in December 2013, Amazon CEO and founder Jeff Bezos said in a TV interview that drones would be flying to customers' homes within five years.

Last year, Amazon unveiled self-piloting drones that are fully electric, can carry five pounds of goods and are designed to deliver items in 30 minutes by dropping them in a backyard. At the time, an Amazon executive said deliveries to shoppers would be happening "within months," but more than 14 months have passed since then.

Seattle-based Amazon is the third drone delivery service to win flight approval, the FAA said. Delivery company UPS and a company owned by search giant Google won approval last year.

The video above is from previous reporting.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

SEE ALSO: Amazon reportedly looking to take over Sears, JCPenney stores as mall fulfillment centers

The Wall Street Journal reports Amazon is in talks with the largest mall owner in the United States, Simon Property Group, to convert former or current Sears and JCPenney stores into new fulfillment centers after being hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic.