TikTok user @brithiq posted that video July 23, and shocked viewers as she explained that she was waiting for a drone to bring her coffee.
“So I brought the kids here today to get drone delivery from Starbucks,” she said at the start. Soon enough, the drone flew into shot and lowered down a delivery bag to the ground.
@brithiq and her children rushed to collect the delivery, showing two Starbucks drinks inside the bag.
“This is cool but scary at the same time,” wrote one viewer.
It might appear like the start of a Black Mirror episode, but it’s actually a part of the drone delivery industry, a field expected to reach more than $6 billion by 2026.
The drone itself is by company Flytrex, a Tel Aviv based startup testing out its delivery system with large chain partnerships, including Starbucks, Pollo Loco and McDonalds. The service is only available at certain locations in North Carolina so far, having only been approved by the Federal Aviation Administration to fly over populated areas in May.
Items are delivered to pick-up locations and eligible backyards within a five-minute drone flight. Customers need to download the Flytrex app and order their food or drink through the app.
“The service is currently available to any backyard in designated areas at two locations in North Carolina. We’ve been granted the widest approval that we know of from the FAA for backyard drone deliveries, and we’re continuing to expand on a daily basis,” explained CEO Yariv Bash.
“So far, both customer and restaurants have been really excited—as drones are much more affordable than any other on-demand delivery service,” he added.
“It’s amazing to see just how much customers are enjoying our services. Usually, people get super excited during the first few aerial deliveries, but even when the initial excitement wears off, they continue to enjoy the benefits of on-demand drone fulfilment long after—faster delivery times, lower prices, no need to tip, with total privacy (no cameras on board).”
Walmart has been working with Flytrex since 2020 on a pilot drone-delivery service program in Fayetteville, North Carolina. The Walmart program sees drone deliveries of up to 6.6 pounds.
For those worried about the safety of the drones, Flytrex have laid out the emergency plans should anything go wrong. The drones can endure motor loss, GPS loss and battery loss. If the drone flies the wrong way or falls, a system can sound a siren, shut down the motors and eject a parachute.
Another video shared by the TikTok user just a few days later showed that she was clearly impressed by the first experience, choosing to try it out with McDonald’s this time.
“We’re constantly expanding and are already working on offering more locations for our on-demand drone delivery service in the U.S.,” said Bash. “Our next steps are to open up more locations and continue to scale our services until we reach every backyard in the U.S.”
There you have it—Starbucks drone delivery and more. Hopefully coming to a backyard near you.